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Equipment Design

Non spontaneous process

Require energy or external forces
Mixtures exist as
Physical or chemical separation
2nd phase, added or developed
energy-separating agent eg. Distillation
mass separating agent eg. Extraction
Or both eg. Azeotropic distillation
Distillation Absorption
Azeotropic Distillation Extractive Distillation
Stripping Extraction
Crystallization Adsorption
Chromotography Ion Exchange
Semipermeable barriers with application of forces-
Microfiltration Ultrafiltration
Nanofiltration Osmosis
Gas Sepaartion Pervaporation
Based on External Force Fields
Centrifugation Thermal Diffusion
Electrolysis Electrophoresis
Separation Processes based on
Mechanical Forces
Centrifugal Force
Pressure Reduction
Electric Field
Magnetic Field
Major Processes
Settling Sedimentation
Floatation Centrifugation
Drying Evaporation
Recovery Percentage of Key Component from
Product Purity
Feed and Product Composition
Flow rate
Composition of key component
If key component dilute, cost of separation higher
Product Purity
Exploitable Property Difference
Separation in Pure products need large difference in
properties or higher number of stages/cost
Characteristics of Separation Process
Developed processes easier to scale up and design
using softwares
Pilot plant data might be needed for new processes
Barrier separations more expensive than phase
Vapor Pressure
Distillation Absorption
Stripping Drying
Crystallization Leaching
Distribution Coefficient
Solvent Extraction Adsorption
Exchange Equilibrium
Ion Exchange Chromatography
Surface Activity
Froth Floatation
Molecular Geometry
Membrane Dialysis

Molecular Kinetic Energy

Mass Diffusion Thermal Diffusion

Electrical Field

Particle Size
Filtration Screening
Settling Sedimentation

Particle Size and Density

Centrifugation Scrubbing
Thickening Decantation
Feed Condition----Liquid and/or Vapor
Phase creation by repeated Vaporization and Condensation
of fluid
Separating agent-----heat transfer
Exploitable property difference---Vapor Pressure/ Relative
Simple Flowsheet
Low Capital Investment-Major Equipment Required are a
column, a reboiler, a condenser
Easily Scalable-even can be scaled to 100 stages
Low Risk
Handles wide range of feed concentrations and throughput
Produce high-purity products
Can separate mixtures with Relative Volatility of 1.2
High mass transfer rates between phases
Suitable for large scale operations
Expensive when Relative volatility below 1.2
Multicomponent separation requires number of
distillation units that might become expensive
Under extreme temperature and pressure
conditions cost increases significantly
Temperature Range -20C to 2500C
Pressure Range 2KPa to 5MPa
for thermally unstable mixtures and
where undesirable reactions may take place
Byproducts may cause loss in production and/or
fouling of trays
Feed Condition---Vapor/Gas
Separation of a solute from a gas stream
Liquid solvent preferentially absorb one or more
component from gas stream
Separating agent---Liquid Solvent plus heat transfer
Basic Variables
Liquid flow rate
Absorption factor L/KV should range between 1.2 to 2.0
Economic 1.4
Temperature increase, may result in decrease in solubility
High pressure needed for greater solubility---costly
Recovery of solvent needed
Cross contamination
Strip volatile component from liquid
Feed Condition---Liquid
Separating agent---Stripping Vapor
Recovery step of absorption
Stripping Factor, KV/L, 1.2 to 2.0
Optimum 1.4
Temperature decrease due to stripping so need
high temperature and/or decrease in pressure
Cross contamination might be issue
Feed---Azeotropic or closed boiling liquid mixtures
Separating agent---Liquid solvent
Separation based on difference in solubility of liquid
Energy efficient process especially when solvent
recovery easy
Process is easily scalable and provides great flexibility
in selective solvents
Requires distillation column as a next step for
recovery of soluble components from solvent
Cross contamination and solvent loss are major issues
Precipitation of dissolved solid upon cooling, removal of
solvent or by addition of precipitating agent
Separating agent---heat transfer
Basic factors
Phase equilibria
Rate and amount of nuclei generated
Rate of crystal growth
Unpredictable so needs pilot plant studies to establish
design parameters
Advantages include single processing step at low
temperature, energy efficient, large capacity variations
Limitations---Staging not easy so need parallel units,
limited to crystal forming components
Selective permittivity of a specific component of feed
stream to pass through membrane barrier
Stream passing through membrane
Stream retained by membrane
Driving force---Pressure Difference
Fairly simple processes with no complex control
Classification based on size of particles/molecules
Microfiltration Macroporous Membrane
Ultrafiltration Mesoporous Membrane
Nanofiltration Microporous Membrane
Reverse Osmosis Molecular Membrane
Gas Separation Molecular Membrane
Pervaporation Molecular Membrane
Incompatibility of membrane with
components in feed stream
Eg. Aromatics and oxygenated solvents damage
polymeric membranes
Membranes may damage at higher
Process is limited to non fouling fluids
Require chemically stable membranes
Uneconomical for high flow rates
Scale up an issue
Selective adsorption of components on a solid
Adsorption is followed by desorption
Adsorption and desorption are
performed in same units
function of time and thermodynamic property
Cyclic operation introducing complexity in the
Energy release in adsorption and energy needed
in desorption must be considered
Chromatography similar to adsorption
Used for Lab work or for small, high value chemicals
Ion exchange is also similar since solid polymer
in sodium form removes calcium ions from water
Separation by gravitational forces acting on
particles or drops
Sedimentation involves creation of a slurry
Large capacities
Low capital and maintenance costs
Poor filtrate clarity
High filtrate loss
Require large differences in density
Separation of solid-solid mixture
Gas bubbles in solid are generated that
becomes attached to selected solid particles
that rise to surface
Solid particles from surface are removed by
mechanical scraper
Additives might be needed to increase
activity of solids
Large capacity range
High operating cost
Application of centrifugal force
Applied for heterogeneous mixtures where
gravity separations are slow because of
Close densities
Small particle size resulting in low settling
Formation of a stable emulsion
High separation efficiency
High capital and energy costs
Limited capacity
Discharge difficult
Removal of liquid from liquid-solid system to produce dry
Gas-solid contacting provides heat of vaporization
Gas-solid contacting depends on
Condition of the feed
Desired form of the product
Temperature sensitivity of solid
Temperature sensitivity of solid
Types of drying devices
Mechanical solid-gas contacting devices
Fluid moving contacting devices
Further subclassification: Direct and Indirect heating
Staging inconvenient
May need parallel units
High energy requirements
Precise temperature controls and vacuum might be needed for
heat sensitive material
Additional equipments needed for dusty materials
Liquid dryers or concentrators
Separate solvents from solution by evaporation
Solute nonvolatile
Evaporators are more of reboilers with liquid-
vapor separation
Natural or forced circulation is employed
Thermal economy is the major concern
Can only be used when no other alternatives is
Solid particles in gas or liquid are removed by
passing the mixture through a porous medium
Cake filtration
Particles are retained on surface of filter medium
Filter media---A cloth of natural or artificial fibre

Depth fitration
Particles are retained within the filter medium
Filter media---granular medium

High operating costs
Batch processes
Poor with toxic or hazardous materials