(129b) Foaming Effect on Random Packing Performance | AIChE

(129b) Foaming Effect on Random Packing Performance


Chen, G. - Presenter, Praxair, Inc.
Cai, T. J. - Presenter, Fractionation Research, Inc.
Chuang, K. T. - Presenter, University of Alberta
Afacan, A. - Presenter, University of Alberta

The effect of foaming on the performance of 16 mm Pall rings was determined in a 0.15 m distillation column with a bed depth of 1.23 m. The tests were conducted with the methanol/water system at 1.0 bar pressure. A controllable foaming inside the packed bed was generated successfully with the addition of the surfactant, Triton X-100, to the reflux stream. The performance of the packing with and without foaming was determined and compared. It was found that foaming increases the HETP by about 20 percent, reduces the capacity by approximately 30 percent. The results also show significant increase of bed pressure drop caused by foaming. In addition to the distillation tests, the foaming tendency and surface tension were measured for the methanol/water system at different methanol concentrations. Foaming tendency was measured using ASTM methods. The measurements revealed direct correlations between foaming tendency of the mixtures and the corresponding changes in surface tension.