(52a) Pilot Plant Testing Results in Successful Liquid-Liquid Extraction Scale-up
Pilot plant testing is a powerful tool that process engineers use to generate the data required for accurate design of liquid-liquid extraction columns. A well-designed and conducted test program followed by emperical scale-up to the production column is the most accurate method used for the design of extraction columns. This paper covers three (3) case studies where pilot plant testing was used for successful design and implementation of extraction columns. Each case involved a new process for which the author could find no previous operation for the same application. Glass shell columns were used for testing each application. The benefit of glass shell columns is that visual observation of the phase behavior (droplet formation, dispersed phase hold-up, coalescense, interface behavior, etc.) allow the engineer or scientist to quickly asses the column performance and systematically tweak the process conditions to optain optimal performance. The paper presents the data generated in the pilot plant test programs and shows how the data was used to design the production size extraction columns.
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