(730e) Design of a Pervaporation Assembly Using Static Mixers
In general, pervaporation process suffers from mass transfer limitations due to poor mass transport in the feed side (liquid side). A common model to describe the mass transfer mechanism in a pervaporation device is the resistance-in-series model, in which the overall mass transfer coefficient (kall) is linked with each of kliquid, kmembrane, and kgas (1/kall = 1/kliquid + 1/kmembrane + 1/kgas, and 1/kgas can be safely ignored in most scenarios). In our design, we employ static mixers to create complex flow dynamics thus enhance mass transfer in the feed side (increasing kliquid). The static mixers can be either commercial ones or self-designed and fabricated using 3D printing technologies.
In this work, we introduce a combination of simulations and experiments approach for pervaporation module design with static mixers as key components in continuous flow process. We design the pervaporation module with static mixers using computer-aided design (CAD) programs, and evaluate its performance by coupling and simulating the hydrodynamics and mass transfer performance. Moreover, the device is tested with ethanol â water and diethyl ether â water systems experimentally. From both approaches, we confirm that static mixers are beneficial to higher separation rates. In addition, we are able to fit the membrane mass transfer coefficient (kmembrane) to show that our simulations are capable of reproducing the experimental data. Then we can use simulations to show whether the devices could fulfill the desired functionality. Therefore, fundamental understanding is gained using the proposed methodology and applied to otherwise more challenging and more complicated membrane processes.