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Experimental Validation of Multiple Steady States in Homogeneous Azeotropic Distillation


T.E. GŁttinger, C. Dorn, M. Morari

vol. AUT96-04

Bekiaris, Meski, Radu and Morari (1993) explained the existence of multiple steady-states in homogeneous ternary azeotropic distillation, based on the analysis of the case of infinite reflux and infinite column length (infinite number of trays). They showed that the pre- dictions of multiple steady-states for such infinite columns have relevant implications for columns of finite length operating at finite reflux. In this article, experiments are described for the ternary homogeneous system methanol-methylbutyrate-toluene which demonstrate the existence of multiple steady-states (output multiplicities) caused by the vapor-liquid-equilibrium. The experiments on an industrial pilot column show two stable steady-states for the same feed flow rate and composition and the same set of operating parameters. The measurements are in excellent agreement with the predictions obtained for infinite columns using the infty/infty analysis tools as well as with stage-by-stage simulation results. These experiments represent the first published validation of the predictions and simulations by various researchers showing that type of output multiplicities in distillation.


Type of Publication:

(04)Technical Report

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% Autogenerated BibTeX entry
@TechReport { G_tDor:1996:IFA_1492,
    author={T.E. G{\"u}ttinger and C. Dorn and M. Morari},
    title={{Experimental Validation of Multiple Steady States in
	  Homogeneous Azeotropic Distillation}},
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