(237b) Helix Reactor: Great Potential for Flow Chemistry
The Helix reactor is highly suited for precise reaction control based on good hydrodynamics. The hydrodynamics are controlled by the Dean vortices, which create excellent heat transfer properties, approach plug flow and avoid turbulence. The flexibility of this reactor has been demonstrated using a very exothermic, temperature sensitive alkylation reaction, a mechanically delicate emulsion polymerisation reaction and a precipitation reaction. The reactor proved to be able to control the highly exothermic reaction leading to no side reactions. In the case of the emulsion polymerisation reaction the gentle mixing conditions of the Helix reactor were used to control particle size and size distribution in contrast to the same reaction performed in a straight tube reactor. This holds through also for the precipitation reaction. It is demonstrated that the helix reactor is a worthwhile tool transforming batch wise processes to continuous processing reducing costs while improving safety and quality.
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