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**Boiling Point - Composition
**

Curve for Cyclohexane-Toluene

mixture

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4 Usually occurs at a particular mole fraction.1 0.0 Can have maximum azeotrope a minimum or boiling point Can limit the separation and purity of the product Changing the pressure can be the solution – Extractive .1 0.5 0.3 0.8 0.VLE – An Azeotrope EA and Eth form an Azeotrope at 55% EA An azeotrope is formed when the liquid and vapour compositions are the same Ethyl acetate Ethanol VLE 1.0 0.5 0.2 0.9 Separation by conventional distillation is not possible 0.3 0. Outside this point separation is possible 0.0 0.6 0.7 0.0 0.9 1.7 Dewpoint and bubble point are the same at the azeotrope 0.4 0.6 Xa (EA liquid) 0.8 Ya (EA vapour) 0.2 0.

9 1.Min BP Azeotrope – EA Ethanol Ethyl acetate Ethanol VLE Bubble Ethyl acetate Ethanol VLE (T-x-y) 1.8 0.6 Xa (EA liquid) 0.7 77 0.3 73 0.0 0.5 0.6 Xa.3 0. Ya (EA) 0.6 76 Temp C Ya (EA vapour) Dew 0.1 0.5 0.0 0.2 72 0.5 0.2 0.1 71 0.4 0.0 .2 0.7 0.4 75 74 0.8 0.4 0.9 1.8 78 0.7 0.0 80 0.9 79 0.0 70 0.0 0.3 0.1 0.

8 0.9 1.4 0.1 0.6 106 0.1 0.5 105 Temp C Ya (H2O vapour) 0.9 Xa.4 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.6 Xa (H2O liquid) 0.7 107 0.5 0.7 0.Max BP Azeotrope . Ya (H2O) Other azeotropic mixtures include [water .8 0.9 109 108 0.0 0.0 0.3 0.0 .0 0.3 104 103 102 0.2 101 0.0 99 0.2 0.8 0.7 0.6 0.5 0.0 0.nitric acid] [water hydrochloric acid] and many [water – alcohols] 1.Water Formic Acid Water Formic Acid VLE Bubble Water Formic Acid VLE (T-x-y) Dew 1.1 100 0.

Dalton and Raoult Dalton’s Law Pa = yaP Pa is the partial pressure. xa is the liquid mole fraction We assume we law are and dealing with ideal From Raoult’s Dalton’s law. ya is the vapour mole fraction and P is the total pressure Raoult’s law – applies to an ideal mixture Pa = Poaxa Poa is the vapour pressure. if we know the vapour pressure we can calculate the mole fractions of the liquid and vapour phases You can then plot an x-y diagram or a T-x-y diagram. we have: Combining Dalton and Raoult… PT Pbo xa o Pa Pbo Pao x a ya PT Therefore. Remember.If equilibrium data are not available Partial Pressure. .mixtures. this is for constant pressure only.

3 60 149.0 80 354.9 90 525.8 100 760.5 5 6.3 70 234.0 20 17.Methano l Water Temperatu Vapor re pressure (°C) (mmHg) 0 4.3 30 31.0 .5 40 55.8 10 9.5 50 92.

.

2.p. Next. From Relative Volatility This is another way to get mole fractions.b Pao o Pb is a function of VP which is a function of T. include Dalton’s law to get an expression for mole fractions: xa ya 1 x a 1 . Use the definition of relative volatility and Raoult’s law to get the following: a . (If you need just one then take the average of at the two b.’s). We can determine the relative volatility from the Vapour Pressures.

1 0.072 85. Perry is a source for data (limited) 105 0.508 79.000 0.0 0.583 0.8 0.0 0.5 0. The T-x-y data are given as follows.234 81.0 Xa.684 100 95 Temp C Ethanol Water Temp Xa Ya 100.0 0.7 0.573 90 85 80 75 0.7 0.124 82.5 0.6 0.9 1.3 0.Activity – Eth H2O Ethanol and Water are separated by distillation.470 0.3 0.545 0.389 0.8 0.2 0. What happens when the mixture is boiled? What is the highest conc of eth that can be achieved in this way? .000 89.4 0. Ya (Eth) Fermentation gives an ethanol conc of about 15%.327 79.3 0.656 0.

L Lx y * dL ( L dL) ( x dx ) Lx y * dL Lx Ldx xdL dxdL dL ( y * x ) Ldx dL dx * L ( y x) x xf L F x xW L W .SIMPLE DISTILLATION Total mole present when time t= o.

.

FLASH DISTILLATION .

.

• At constant system pr.Steam Distillation Steam Distillation : • Possible to distill an organic compound at much lower temp. • Due to immiscibility of water .PT .steam lowers the partial & vapor pressure of organic compound & its corresponding boiling pt.it can be separated from product by simple condensation & followed by decanting. Application : Purification of heat sensitive material as an alternative to .

**Azeotropic & Extractive Distillation.
**

Very close boiling mix can be separated economically by this technique.

Solvent when added will increase the difference between volatilities of

light & heavy component. The attraction of solvent to one of the

component reduces the volatility of solvent & the component to whichit

is attracted.

**Solvent for Distillation should be
**

• Non-corrosive.

• Should not react with feed to form undesirable product.

• Non-toxic.

• Azeotropic solvent should have volatility near the major

component

desired in overhead product & in Extractive distillation its

volatility

should be lower than major component to be withdrawn at

bottom.

Extractive Distillation :

• An agent modifies the relative volatility between key

component

Without forming an azeotrope. The agent is nonvolatile &

called Solvent.

• Extractive Distilation is simpler process than Azeotropic

Distillation

Overhead

vapor

Total

condenser

Top

of column

Top stage

Distillate

Rectifying section

(Enriching section)

Feed

Feed stage

Stripping section

(Exhausting section)

Bottom stage

Boilup

Partial reboiler

Bottom

of column

Bottom

product

Applications: Equipment: • the most widely used large-scale method for separating homogeneous fluid mixtures in the chemical and petrochemical industry • if no azeotropes are encountered. overhead and bottom products may be obtained in any desired purity • suitable for the separation of liquid mixtures of components having similar boiling points into their individual components (at low relative volatility. but >1.05) • Tray Columns (stagewise contact between the phases on individual trays) • Packed Columns (continuous contact between the phases on the surface of a packing material) .

partially graphical design procedures for tray columns separating binary mixtures: Ponchon-Savarit (1921/22). thermal-hydraulic design of the condenser and reboiler) Determination of main dimensions of the distillation column: estimating the number of equilibrium stages required for a given separation. CHEMCAD ) . Naphtali-Sandholm (1971) commercial process simulation software allowing design and rating calculations of tray and packed columns operating at steady or unsteady state conditions (ASPEN .Types of Binary Distillation Calculation Energy requirements and heat exchanger design for a given adiabatic separation process (calculate the heat duties of the condenser and reboiler. McCabe-Thiele (1925) approximate calculation methods for the solution of multicomponent. the column height and the column diameter for a desired pressure drop (H = f(N). Gilliland (1940). Underwood (1946) design of packed columns based on NTU/HTU concepts: Chilton. multistage separation problems (Shortcut methods): Fenske (1932). D) Historical Review of Calculation Methods until 1970s: simplified. Colburn (1935) in the present: complex mathematical matrix methods allow to find exact solutions of nonlinear equation systems: Wang-Henke (1966). specify the heating steam consumption and coolant requirements.

That means. 2) The component heat capacity changes and the heat of mixing are negligible compared to the heat of vaporization (considering ideal behaviour of binary mixtures). 3) The distillation column. The liquids and vapors are always at their bubble points and dew points. the condenser and the reboiler are well insulated so that heat losses to environment are negligible. 4) The pressure is constant throughout the column. . that all liquid and vapor molar flow rates in the rectifying section are constant and that all liquid and vapor molar flow rates in the stripping section are constant but not the same as those in the rectifying section. 7) The streams leaving each stage are assumed to be in vapor-liquid equilibrium. This approach assumes that the amount of molecules which evaporate and which condensate in each stage are the same or nearly the same. Further requirements are: 5) Kinetic and potential energies are negligible. The above assumptions lead to the concept of constant molar overflow. respectively.Fundamentals of Binary Distillation Assumptions for an Approximate Calculation of the Binary Distillation Assumptions and Simplifications: 1) The two components have equal and constant molar enthalpies of vaporization (latent heats). no pressure drop occurs. 6) The distillation column is operated at continuous steady state conditions.

.

The liquid removed from the reboiler is known as the bottoms product or simply. . and as it exits the top of the unit. The condensed liquid is stored in a holding vessel known as the reflux drum. the heating source may be the output streams of other columns. The source of heat input can be any suitable fluid. The condensed liquid that is removed from the system is known as the distillate or top product. it is cooled by a condenser. Some of this liquid is recycled back to the top of the column and this is called the reflux. The vapour raised in the reboiler is re-introduced into the unit at the bottom of the column.Basic Operation and Terminology The vapour moves up the column. In refineries. although in most chemical plants this is normally steam. Heat is supplied to the reboiler to generate vapour. bottoms.

Ln D Ln D y R x x D Rn 1 R 1 Stripping section including the partial reboiler: Vm1 Lm 1 y m 1 xm 1 m th plate Overall material balance Lm Vm 1 W Component balance A Lm xm Vm 1 y m 1 WxW y m1 Lm WxW xn Vm 1 Vm 1 y n 1 Lm WxW xn Lm W Lm W 1 W .L V L F. Rectifying section including the total condenser: V = L + D. The method uses material balances around certain parts of the column and the equilibrium curve. xD Overall material balance Vn 1 Ln D n th plate Vn1 Ln yn1 xn Component balance A Vn1 y n 1 Ln x n Dx D y n 1 Ln Dx D xn Vn 1 Vn1 y n 1 Ln Dx D xn . xW y Lm WxW x Lm W Lm W R L D . D = V .McCabe-Thiele Method for Trayed Towers The mathematical-graphical McCabe-Thiele Method can be used to determine the number of ideal stages N needed for a given separation of a binary mixture (to produce a distillate and a bottom product ) and column operating pressure. x F D. L = V – D.

.7 V ' y L' x WxW f L’ f-1 V V ' (1 q ) F .8 y (1 q ) F x qF ' FxF y q x x F 1 q 1 q .4 Over material balance up sec tion V L D . x F SS L' L qF L L qF .9 ........3 y V V ' x L L' DxD WxW Sub V V & L L values in 9 Over material balance lower sec tion ....... vapor.5 Component A balance Vy Lx DxD ....10 .2 ' V V (1 q ) F ' V ’ f-1 substracting 6 8 ..1’ V ... The feed-stage condition influences the change in slope of the operating lines: a) Feed is a saturated liquid b) Feed is a saturated vapor L V F...........The quantities of the liquid and the vapor streams change abruptly at the feed tray f since the feed may consist of liquid. x F L f+1 F... or a mixture of both........6 V ' L W f+1 RS f L’ V .....

Possible feed-stage conditions: a) b) Saturated liquid h% F h% h% h% q 1 Saturated vapor h% F h% h% h% q 1 F F c) Subcooled liquid d) Superheated vapor e) Partially vaporized (liquid + vapor) q0 q0 L& L& L& F& L& V& V& V& V& F& L& L& L& F& L& V& V& V& V& F& % h% 0 q 1 L& L& L& F& V& V& V& F& h% F h Slope q>1 1 q 1 q 0<q<1 q=1 q=0 ~ y Eq. (8) q<0 For cold liquid Energy to convert 1 mole of feed to saturated vapour Molal latent heat of vapourization C (T T f ) p b 0 ~ x ~ zF ~ zF q 1 Effect of thermal condition of feed .

In 1925. N 2) Draw the rectifying section operating line a) Locate the distillate product composition S R from the x D selected reflux ratio b) Determine the slope y Rn 1 x R 1 y% x% 0 % x D r 1 0 3) Draw the q-line : a) Locate the feed composition on the diagonal z% F q tan b) Determine the parameter q q 1 % x B z% F % % 1 x D xN 1 6) Step off the theoretical stages. McCabe and Thiele published an approximate graphical method for combining the equilibrium curve for a binary system with operating lines to estimate the number of equilibrium stages required for a desired degree of separation of the feed. Alternatively. 1 1) Draw the equilibrium curve p=const. . changing operating lines at the feed stage c) Calculate the slope 4) Determine the point of intersection S of the rectifying section operating line and the q-line % x B 5) Draw the stripping section operating line a) Locate the bottoms product composition diagonal 0 on the The staircase can be stepped of from the top to the bottom. starting from the point on the diagonal. the stages can be stepped of from the bottom (from the partial reboiler) at the point to the top.

Reppich | Conceptual Design of Distillation. As a result. Dr. | Prof. the reflux ratio can be selected anywhere from the minimum to an infinite value. Absorption and Stripping Systems | 36 | . Thus. at infinite operating costs (heat for the reboiler. s Nmin 0 x% B x% 1 x% D The infinite reflux ratio corresponds to the minimum number of equilibrium stages required for the separation. all liquid leaving the bottom stage is vaporized and returned as boilup to the column. power for the reflux pump). thus to minimum capital costs.For a given specification. Furthermore. there are two important limiting conditions that need to be considered for distillation: a) Minimum Number of Equilibrium Stages Nmin at Total Reflux The entire overhead vapor is condensed and returned to the top stage as reflux. no products are withdrawn from the & & column (D B 0) and there is no feed: 1 y% r. condenser coolant. M.

The number of equilibrium stages required increases because the operation lines move closer and closer to the equilibrium curve. q = 1): y% 0 min Pinch Point S x% D rmin 1 N rmin 0 x% B z% F x% 1 x% D The minimum reflux ratio corresponds to the need for an infinite number of stages at a minimum boilup ratio. a limiting condition is reached when the point of intersection S´ is on the equilibrium curve and therefore an infinite number of stages is required. thus at minimum operating costs necessary for the separation. Absorption and Stripping Systems | 37 | . Reppich | Conceptual Design of Distillation. the intersection of the two operating lines and the q-line moves from the diagonal toward the equilibrium curve.b) Minimum Reflux Ratio rmin As the reflux ratio decreases from the limiting case of total reflux. Dr. M. thus requiring more and more stairs to move from the top of the column to the bottom. Finally. 1 y% y% 0 min The minimum reflux ratio rmin can be determined graphically from the ordinate intercept of the rectifying operating line or by the Underwood equation (that can be applied to saturatedliquid feed. | Prof.

5 · rmin at high energy costs rmin ropt at high costs of construction materials A first estimate of the optimum reflux ratio can be obtained from ropt = 1. which is the sum of the installed capital and operating costs. that frequently occurs in the range of r 1.2 · rmin. the one for which the total annual cost Ctot of the distillation. with the corresponding number of equilibrium stages required varying from infinity to the minimum number Nmin.05 · rmin < ropt < 1.An distillation column must be operated between the two limiting conditions of minimum reflux rmin and total reflux. Ctot (r) Cop (r) The reflux ratio influences both the number of stages required (and thus the installed capital cost Ccap 1/r) and the energy requirements (and thus the operating costs Cop r). C [€/a] The reflux ratio to be used for a new design should be the optimum. Ccap (r) The total cost must pass through a minimum at the optimum reflux ratio. Ccap total installed annual capital cost Cop annual operating and maintenance cost (heating and cooling costs) total annual cost C tot . will be the least.

For binary mixtures of this kind a graphical model has been developed by RUHEMANN. based on the use of an enthalpy-composition chart. and SAVARIT. For a non-ideal system. the calculations become much more tedious. . where the molar latent heat is no longer constant and where there is a substantial heat of mixing. PONCHON. It is necessary to construct an enthalpycomposition diagram for particular binary system over a temperature range covering the two-phase vapor-liquid region at the pressure of the distillation.

3. 4. . Heat of mixing and dilution as a function of temperature and composition.The following data are needed: 1. Heat capacity as a function of temperature. Latent heats of vaporization as a function of composition and pressure or temperature. 2. composition and pressure. Bubble-point temperature as a function of composition and pressure.

B T Tref Hsol Enthalpy-composition diagram (4) Hmix hmix mix (5) mix xA A xB B (6) .A T Tref xB CP.Enthalpy of liquid: n hm hi i In “regular” / ideal mixtures: hi xi hio For gaseous / vapor mixtures at normal T and P: n n i i Hm hi yi i hmix xA hA xBhB Hsol (3) hmix xA CP.

(7) to (9) gives: V L hF VH Lh L Steady-state flow system with phase separation and heat added V (H – hF) = L (hF – h) L H hF V hF h Substituting eq.The enthalpy-concentration diagram may be used to evaluate graphically the enthalpy and composition of streams added or separated. q = 0: Substituting eq. (7) to (8) gives: V (y – xF) = L (xF – x) L y xF V xF x (10) (11) (12) (13) . Over-all material balance: F=V+L Component material balance V F xF = V y + L x (7) (8) Enthalpy balance: F hF = V H + L h F q (9) For adiabatic process.

the slopes of both lines are the same. Since both lines go through the same point (F).Comparing eq. . q = 0 H hF y xF hF h xF x According to eq. (11) to (13) gives: H hF y xF hF h xF x (14) Eq. the lines lie on the same straight line. (15). (14) can be rearranged: H hF hF h y xF xF x (15) ___ H F hF h Theslope oflineVFis: V Theslope of lineFLis: L x ___ y xF Enthalpy-concentration lines – adiabatic.

LEVER-ARM RULE PRINCIPLE V F x H A L B xF L H hF V hF h hF Consider triangle LBV ___ FV AV H hF L ___ ___ LF BA hF h V h ___ y ___ V LF Similarly: F ___ LV ___ L FV ___ V LF ___ L FV ___ F LV .

HLEnthalpy B (19) balance: FhF qB DhD qD BhB (20) . xB. xD. HLD L0 x0 HL0 Component material balance: F x F = D xD + B x B F xF HF (17 F xF = D xD + (F – D) xB (18 F xF xB D xD xB qB B.Over-all material balance: V1 qD F=D+B (16) D.

(21) and (24): L0 h QD H1 D D H1 hD (25) Internal reflux is shown as: L0 hD QD H1 V1 hD QD h0 (26) .TOTAL CONDENSER A Material balance around condenser: qD V1 = L0 + D (21) Component material balance: V1 y1 = L0 x0 + D x0 (22) Enthalpy balance: V1 L0 D xD qD + V1 H1 = L0 h0 + D h(23) D Designating: L1 QD qD D V1 H1 = L0 h0 + D (hD – QD) (24) Combining eqs.

Internal reflux between each plate. D y1. xD h0. can be shown as: (hD – QD). Lm h QD Hm1 until a point in the column is D Vm1 hD QD hm reached where a stream is added or removed. x0. hD Lm m D xD . xD (27) A qD H or h hD – QD – H1 H1 L0 V1 H1 – hD Vm+1 L0.

x0 y1. yD . yD HD – QD – H1 V1 D H or h HD. x0. yD H1 – h0 h0. (HD – QD).

. . . . (35) and (36): xD = x n Vn+1 (29) (30) Ln For the enthalpy balance: L0 h0 – V1 H1 = L1 h1 –V2 H2 = L2 h2 –V3 H3 = . . =L h –V H = – D (h – Q ) = h (31) LF Combining eqs. . (23) and (31): h = hD – QD (32) m m m+1 m+1 D D . = Lm – Vm+1 RECTIFYING SECTION qD V1 V2 V3 D xD L0 L1 L2 =–D = L0 – V1 = – D = (28) For the component material balance: L0 x0 – V1 y1 = L1 x1 – V2 y2 = L2 x2 – V3 y3 = .The material balance equation maybe Enthalpy balanceof total condensor: rearranged in the from of difference: qD + V1 H1 = L0 h0 + D h(23) D L0 – V1 = L1 – V2 = L2 – V3 = . . = Lm xm – Vm+1 ym+1 = – D xD = x L0 x0 – V1 y1 = – D xD = x Combining eqs. . .

(hD – QD)] • This is designated as point . . and all lines corresponding to the combined material and enthalpy balance equations (operating line equations) for the rectifying section of the column pass through this intersection. the difference point.• These 3 independent equations [eqs. and (30)] can be written for rectifying section of the column between each plate. the differences in enthalpy and in composition always pass through the same point. (29). • On the enthalpy scale and on the composition scale. (28). ([xD.

PLATE-TO-PLATE GRAPHICAL PROCEDURE FOR DETERMINING THE NUMBER OF EQUILIBRIUM STAGES: 1. h1). Repeat steps 2 and 3 until the feed plate is reached . h) 4. Use Equilibrium data alone to establish the point L1 at (x1. Draw the operating line between L1 and . xD. HD or hD to establish the location of point with x = xD and h = hD – QD or h = HD – QD 2. Since L1 is assumed to be a saturated liquid. 3. H2). x1 must lie on the saturatedliquid line. (x. Use R. This line intersects the saturated-vapor line at V2 (y2. H or h V4 V3 V2 V 1 L3 L2 x or y L1 D .

(40) and (41): x xB (35) For the enthalpy balance: LM hM VM1 HM1 B hB QB LM1 hM1 VM HM LM 2 hM 2 VM1 HM1 . Lm xm Vm1 ym1 x N VM LM1 VM1 LM (34) Combining eqs. Lmhm Vm 1 Hm 1 h qB B xB Combining eqs..The material balance equation maybe rearranged in the from of difference: LM VM1 B LM1 VM STRIPPING SECTION LM2 LM1 .. (1) and (4): h hB QB (36) (37) .... Lm Vm1 m Lm Vm1 (33) For the component material balance: LM xM VM1 yM1 BxB LM1 xM1 VM yM LM 2 xM 2 VM1 yM1 ..

• On the enthalpy scale and on the composition scale. and all lines corresponding to the combined material and enthalpy balance equations (operating line equations) for the stripping section of the column pass through this QB intersection. (hB – QB)]. the differences in enthalpy and in composition always pass through the [xB. is usually not known. the difference point. same point. and (35)] can be written for stripping section of the column between each plate. It can be derived from over-all material balance: (38 F=D ) +B Combining eq. (33). . (34). (38) with eqs. • This is designated as point . (28) and (33) gives: (39 F ) Equation (39) impliesthat lies on the extension of the straight line passing through F and .• These 3 independent equations [eqs.

Draw the operating line between Lm(xm. 2. Assuming the reboiler to be an equilibrium stage. Draw a vertical straight line at xB all the way down until it intersects the extension of line F in 3. This line intersects the saturated-liquid line at VM V V 6. Draw a straight line passing through F and . 5.PLATE-TO-PLATE GRAPHICAL PROCEDURE FOR DETERMINING THE NUMBER OF EQUILIBRIUM STAGES: 1. the vapor V M+1 is in equilibrium with the bottom stream. Use equilibrium data alone to establish the value of y m+1 on the saturated-vapor line. hm) and VM+1. xB . 4. M1 H or h M 1 hB LM LM1 x or y . Repeat steps 4 and 5 until the feed plate is reached.

the other difference point is used to complete the construction. when an equilibrium tie line crosses the line connecting the difference points through the feed condition. F qB B • In either case. indicating either the condition at the top or the bottom of the column. • Proceed as explained in previous slides. .TOTAL COLUMN V1 qD D L0 • The construction may start from either side of the diagram.

V1 H or h H or h L1 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 y1 1 F xB xF xD x1 .

Btu/hr. Condenser duty feeding 10. c. Minimum equilibrium stages at total reflux.117 cal/mole H1 = 12.000 lb of feed/hr.723 cal/mole L0 hD QD H1 D H1 hD 5. d. SOLUTION (a) From the graph: hD = h0 = 5.621 cal/mole .117 Q D 12. determine the following for the conditions in Example 1.5 Minimum reflux ratio L0/D.117 QD = – 26.EXAMPLE 3 Using the enthalpy-concentration diagram from Example 2. Btu/hr. The number of theoretical stages for an operating reflux ratio of R = L0/D = 2. a.723 2 .723 5.5 12. b. assuming a saturated liquid feed. Reboiler duty. e.

117 – (– 26. • Extend the line until it intersects a vertical line passing through xB. Number of stages = 11 .621) = 31.The coordinate of point is: x = xD = 0.97 h = hD – QD = 5. at • Draw operating lines and equilibrium lines in the whole column using the method explained in the previous slides.738 cal/mole • Draw a straight line passing through and F.

F .

700 cal/mole (b) L 0 hD QD H1 D H1 hD F L0 D h H1 H1 hD min 21.117 = 1.723 5.723 12.18 . = 21.700 12.

(c) 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 F N=7 .

350 + 5.8 Btu lb mole mole B 10.426 mole cal mole mole F 103 lb mole F = – 1.843 Btu/hr (e) hB – QB = – 14.738 cal/mole hD = 5.(d) hD – QD = h = 31.574 mole cal mole mole F 103 lb mole F = 2.751 cal/mole .117 cal/mole QD = – 26.886 cal/mole QB = 14.236 cal/mole cal 1.621 cal/mole QD 26.981.350 cal/mole hB = 5.886 = 20.631.8 Btu lb mole mole D 10.236 0.000 lb F hr 0.000 lb F hr QD 26.621 cal 1.

FACTORS AFFECTING DISTILLATION COLUMN OPERATION Vapour Flow Conditions Adverse vapour flow conditions can cause • Foaming • Entrainment • Weeping/dumping • Flooding .

Although it provides high interfacial liquid-vapour contact. Excessive weeping will lead to dumping. . It could also contaminate high purity distillate. foaming may be so bad that the foam mixes with liquid on the tray above. Excessive entrainment can lead to flooding. Weeping is indicated by a sharp pressure drop in the column and reduced separation efficiency. Entrainment Entrainment refers to the liquid carried by vapour up to the tray above and is again caused by high vapour flow rates.Foaming Foaming refers to the expansion of liquid due to passage of vapour or gas. but is sometimes due to tray designs and condition. Whatever the cause. In some cases. That is the liquid on all trays will crash (dump) through to the base of the column (via a domino effect) and the column will have to be re-started. Whether foaming will occur depends primarily on physical properties of the liquid mixtures. excessive foaming often leads to liquid buildup on trays. Therefore. Weeping/Dumping This phenomenon is caused by low vapour flow. liquid starts to leak through perforations. The pressure exerted by the vapour is insufficient to hold up the liquid on the tray. separation efficiency is always reduced. It is detrimental because tray efficiency is reduced: lower volatile material is carried to a plate holding liquid of higher volatility.

Column Diameter Most of the above factors that affect column operation is due to vapour flow conditions: either excessive or too low. Tray efficiencies are affected by fouling. and the rates at which these occur depends on the properties of the liquids being processed. if the column diameter is not sized properly. State of Trays and Packings Remember that the actual number of trays required for a particular separation duty is determined by the efficiency of the plate. any factors that cause a decrease in tray efficiency will also change the performance of the column. Not only will operational problems occur. causing an increase in liquid holdup on the plate above. hence column capacity. Thus. The increased pressure from excessive vapour also backs up the liquid in the downcomer. the column will not perform well. the maximum capacity of the column may be severely reduced. Thus.Flooding Flooding is brought about by excessive vapour flow. causing liquid to be entrained in the vapour up the column. Thus appropriate materials should be specified for tray construction. Vapour flow velocity is dependent on column diameter. wear and tear and corrosion. Weeping determines the minimum vapour flow required while flooding determines the maximum vapour flow allowed. the desired separation duties may not be achieved. Flooding is detected by sharp increases in column differential pressure and significant decrease in separation efficiency. Depending on the degree of flooding. . and the packings if packings are used.

Although many of the columns are insulated. The same applies to condensors. changing weather conditions can still affect column operation.Weather Conditions Most distillation columns are open to the atmosphere. . Thus the reboiler must be appropriately sized to ensure that enough vapour can be generated during cold and windy spells and that it can be turned down sufficiently during hot seasons.

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