(215d) Modeling Luyben's Chemical Processes with COCO and ChemSep

Kooijman, H., Clarkson University
Van Baten, J. M., AmsterCHEM
Walker, B., Clarkson University

For the past few years Bill Luyben has been steadily publishing a series of papers in which he shows in some detail how a complete chemical process can be modeled. Several of these process descriptions have recently been compiled into a book (Principles and Case Studies of Simultaneous Design, Wiley, 2011). The description of this book on Amazon.com starts as follows:

“There are many comprehensive design books, but none of them provide a significant number of detailed economic design examples of typically complex industrial processes. “

As someone that teaches process design, the first author of this paper will happily affirm the truth of this statement. The growing series of papers on process design from Luyben is of immense value to those in the teaching profession that, each year, are required to find a new process flowsheet, model it, and guide their students through the recreation of the same thing. (Of course, it can also become a curse if their students manage to find his papers on the web!)

Luyben uses a commercial flowsheet simulation package to get students a chance to get hands on experience. This is excellent for getting students experienced with the particular package in question, however, since the package often cannot be installed on students own PCs, it simultaneously prevents students to really become creative in their process design classes. To change this we ported the published Luyben flowsheets to a free (as in free beer), CAPE-OPEN compliant, flowsheet package called COCO/Chemsep that can be downloaded from the web anywhere in the world. To entice professors and students to consider this alternative, we have added flowsheets for important industrial processes such as Air separation, LNG, EO, and more to the Luyben set.