(732c) Extraction of Chemicals From Fermentation Broths Using a KARR Column

Glatz, D. J. - Presenter, Koch Modular Process Systems, LLC

Fermentation processes have become more important in recent years for the creation of valuable chemical products.  Liquid-liquid extraction (LLE) is a logical first step in the recovery process since many of the chemicals produced are organic chemicals with higher boiling point than water.  These processes generally require a high number of theoretical stages to achieve that required separation.  As such, agitated LLE columns are necessary instead of static columns, including packed columns and columns with sieve trays.  However, most fermentation broths have a high tendency towards emulsification when contacted with solvents for extraction.  Agitated columns using rotating internals only intensify the tendency towards emulsification.  The KARR® Column however, uses a reciprocating plate stack with open area greater than 55% for providing the agitation during counter current flow of the two phases.  This type of agitation has proven to work effectively when columns with rotating internals have failed.  This paper will present several case studies where the KARR® Column was used to provide solutions for several such processes.