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EXPERIMENT 1

BATCH SEDIMENTATION
Badiang, John Piox
Banting, Saturnino Jr.
Molinos, Jasper
Introduction
Sedimentation is the partial separation or concentration of suspended solid particles from
a liquid by gravity settling. This field may be divided into the functional operations of thickening
and clarification. The primary purpose of thickening is to increase the concentration of suspended
solids in a feed stream, while that of clarification is to remove a relatively small quantity of
suspended particles and produce a clear effluent. These two functions are similar and occur
simultaneously, and the terminology merely makes a distinction between the primary process
results desired (Green & Perry, 2008).

When a particle is at a sufficient distance from the walls of the container and from other
particles so that its fall is not affected by them, the process is called free settling. Interference is
less than 1% if the ratio of the particle diameter to the container diameter is less than 1:200 or if
the particle concentration is less than 0.2 vol% in the solution. When the particles are crowded,
they settle at a lower rate and the process is called hindered settling (Geankoplis, 2014).

A particle falling under the action of gravity will accelerate until the drag force balances
gravitational force, after which it falls at a constant terminal or free-settling velocity. For spherical
particles, the basic principle behind the settling of particles is given by Stokes law (Green & Perry,
2008):
2 ( )
=
18
Where = free-settling velocity
= particle diameter
= particle density
= liquid density
= liquid viscosity

For many cases of settling, a large number of particles are present, and the surrounding
particles interfere with the motion of individual particles. The velocity gradients surrounding each
particle are affected by the close presence of other particles. The particles settling in the liquid
displace the liquid, and an appreciable upward velocity of the liquid is generated. Hence, the
velocity of the liquid is appreciably greater with respect to the particle than with respect to the
apparatus itself (Geankoplis, 2014):
2 ( ) 2
= ( )
18
Where 2 = volume fraction of the slurry mixture occupied by the liquid
1
= dimensionless quantity which is equal to 101.82(1)
During the settling of particles, different compositions, wherein there are differe nt
concentrations of particles, could be observed within the sedimentation tank. These differences of
compositions are termed as zones. Different zones are shown in figure 1:

Figure 1. Sedimentation zones during slurry settling through time (Slurries Sedimentation of
Slurries, n.d.)

Zone A is the constant composition zone, where the suspension moves at a uniform rate.
Free settling occurs in this zone. Zone B is variable composition zone, where hindered settling
occurs. Concentration of the particles does not remain the same in different areas. Zone C is the
sediment zone. Solid particles which are obtained at the end of sedimentation process are found
here. Zone D is the clear liquid zone, where it is free of particles. As the interface of the particles
moves down, sludge builds up and the point where two levels becomes equal is known as Critical
Point as shown in figure 2: (XnaXia, 2012). The critical point is shown at point C 2 .
Figure 2. Graphic analysis of interface (Sedimentation)

Objectives

This experiment aims to conduct a batch sedimentation process using cornstarch as a


sample. Specifically, the experiment further aims to:
(1) To establish a settling curve diagram of the cornstarch slurry sample at differe nt
concentrations
(2) To determine the effect of different concentrations on the settling rate of the cornstarch
slurry sample
(3) To plot the settling rates of the slurries as a function of time
(4) And lastly, to determine the time at which critical settling rates and critical
sedimentation points of the cornstarch slurry occurs
Scope and Limitations

This experiment is done in order to establish the settling curve of a cornstarch slurry. Thus
the material that will be used in the experiment will be limited only to cornstarch particles. The
cornstarch that will be utilized in the experiment will be purchased at the local market of Miagao,
Iloilo.

The effect of cornstarch slurry concentration on its settling rate will also be determined in
the experiment, thus concentration of 25 g/L, 50 g/L, 75 g/L, and 100 g/L will be prepared and
used in the experiment. Concentrations beyond 100 g/L will be out of the scope of the study since
bigger concentration may result in a more hindered settling, thus requiring a lot of time to let it
settle. Also, concentrations less than 25 g/L are not considered since the mixture may be negligib le
and settling may not properly occur. Only batch sedimentation process will be conducted in the
experiment using 1 L graduated cylinders.

The experiment will only cover the determination of the following: establishment of
settling curve, effect of concentration on settling rate, and critical settling rate. The average particle
diameter on the other hand will not be determined because the particle density, liquid density, and
liquid viscosity are outside the scope of the experiment.

The experiment will be assumed to be conducted at controlled conditions, therefore effects


of external forces such as ambient temperature, atmospheric pressure, humidity, and weather
conditions will be assumed to be negligible. Also, the angle of the table where the graduated
cylinders are to be placed were ignored. Although it may affect the manual volume readings of the
interphase and slurry, a perfectly leveled table cannot be established.
Results and Discussion
Results

Interphase Height vs Time


60

50
z, Interphase Height (cm)

40

Slurry A
30
Slurry B
Slurry C
20
Slurry D

10

0
0 500 1000 1500 2000
t (min)

Figure 3. Plot of the interphase height as a function of time with its corresponding concentration.

Settling Rates vs Time


0.18

0.16

0.14

0.12
Slurry A
0.1
Slurry B
0.08
Slurry C
0.06 Slurry D
0.04

0.02

0
0 200 400 600 800 1000 1200 1400 1600

Figure 4. Plot of settling rates as a function of time with its corresponding concentration.
Interphase Height vs Time
60

50
z, Interphase Height (cm)

40

Slurry A
30
Slurry B

Critical Sedimentation Points Slurry C


20
Slurry D

10

0
0 500 1000 1500 2000
t (min)

Figure 5. Determination of the critical settling rates of different concentrations


Discussion
In order to compare the settling behavior and settling characteristics of cornstarch slurry at
varying concentrations, a batch sedimentation experiment was performed. Cornstarch slurry at
different concentrations were prepared as follows: Slurry A (25 g/L), Slurry B (50 g/L), Slurry C
(75 g/L), and Slurry D (100 g/L). Simultaneous mixing was done in the first part so that at no pre-
settling will occur and the different slurry concentrations will settle at the same starting time. As
time elapsed, solid concentration began to settle and the formation of the clear zone, transitio n
zone, and settled solids has been observed. Data has been recorded as shown in Table 2, and the
interphase height (z) as a function of time was then plotted in Figure 3.
Figure 3 illustrates the settling curves for the different slurry concentrations of A, B, C,
and D. It can be observed in the figure that the slurries with varying concentrations also exhibits
different slopes, with Slurry A having the steepest slope, followed by Slurry B, then Slurry C, and
the last is Slurry D. The slope of the settling curve determines how fast the settling rate of the
particles in the slurry, thus the steepest slope indicates the fastest settling rate and vice versa. The
differences between the slopes indicates the differences between the settling rates. The higher the
concentration of the slurry, the less steeper the slope, as shown in Figure 3. This shows that the
settling of the solid particles are mostly hindered. This also mean that the concentration of the
solids present in the mixture is high enough that the particles interact with each other and affected
the supposedly free settling of the particles. As the concentration increases, the more hindered the
settling of its particles, which in effect the solid particles takes longer time to settle and longer to
arrive at its critical sedimentation point, compared to slurries with dilute concentratio ns. This
verify the theory in which mixtures with highest concentration exhibits the highest hindered
settling or lower settling rates (Geankopils, 2014).
Free settling rate (constant rate period) also varies with concentration, in which the more
dilute the concentration, free settling rate is highly possible. As observed in figure 3, Slurry A has
the steepest slope since it is the most diluted, thus free settling is occurring since less interactio n
of the solid particles occurs that will probably hindered the settling of solid particles.
Figure 5 represents the critical settling points of the slurries at different concentrations, in
which at this point, only two distinct phases, clear zone and settled solids can be observed. In order
to determine the critical points, tangent lines were drawn at the starting point and endpoint of the
curve, and a perpendicular line is connected to the point of tangency of the curve as shown in
Figure 2. Critical points can also be determined by observing the time in which abrupt shift of the
curve happened. In Figure 5, it can be observed that Slurry A has the least time in reaching the
critical point in sedimentation while Slurry D has the highest time in attaining its critical point in
sedimentation. This is because as the concentration is increased, the more hindered the settling is,
which in effect the solid particles takes longer time to settle and longer to arrive at its critical
sedimentation point, compared to slurries with dilute concentrations. Critical settling rates occurs
at the 700th minute of Slurry A, 750th minute of Slurry B, 800th minute of Slurry C, and 850th
minute of Slurry D.
Settling time is also greatly affected by the concentration. If data were really recorded
precisely and not per long interval, it can be observed that longer time is needed for the more
concentrated slurry to fully settle compared to the dilute ones. This is due to the compression
period (hindered settling) which normally is very slow. The liquids are pushed upwards through
the solids, so as the suspended solids grow thicker, the longer time the liquid would go through up
to the clear zone. Compression would be very quick if the slurry is diluted, and it is much faster to
achieve than having a concentrated one. Evidence of this can also be explained through the settling
rates of each slurry concentration. It would be expected that Slurry A will settle the fastest since it
has the fastest settling rate, and Slurry D will take more time to settle.
Figure 4 shows the plot of the settling rates as a function of time. As shown, no definite
trend can be observed within the different slurry concentration. Theoretically, settling rates will
tend to decrease with respect to time. The abnormality of the data may be due to the errors
committed during the reading of the interphase volumes which was really not accurate and only
estimations were made because of the large increment of volume of the graduation of the graduated
cylinder, thus can affect the results of the experiments. Also, during the experiment, equally
levelled surface was hard to find in laboratory which resulted to the deviation of the volume
readings.

Conclusion
The settling curve for corn starch slurry at various concentrations was established. Varying
concentrations of the slurry definitely affect its settling rate. The settling curve will change
depending on how concentrated or diluted the slurry is, with the steepness of the slope
corresponding to how fast the solid particles settled. Settling time for concentrated slurries is
longer compared to the dilute ones. Critical settling point is achieved faster for dilute slurry than a
concentrated one, which in turn will make it enter the compression stage faster.

Recommendations
In order to achieve an experiment with more accurate data, the group recommend the
following:
(a) It is recommended to use a graduated cylinder with smaller increment of the volume of
graduation in order to accurately read the volumes during the experiment
(b) Do not conduct the sedimentation experiment in LR4 since no levelled surface is
available in LR4; place the graduated cylinders in an equally levelled surface in order
to accurately measure the volumes
(c) Use an automatic measuring device that can monitor the volume of the clear zone,
transition zone, and settled solids over a wide range of time.
(d) Use another sample for sedimentation process
(e) Increase the trial for every concentration

References
Geankoplis, C. J. (2014). Transport Processes & Separation Processes Principles (Includes Unit
Operations). Pearson Educated LImited: pp 931-934.
Green, D., & Perry, R. (2008). Perry's Chemical Engineer's Handbook. The McGraw- Hill
Companies, Inc.:p22-64
Sedimentation. (n.d.). Retrieved from Wastewater Engineering Handbook.on February 4, 2017.
Slurries Sedimentation of Slurries. (n.d.). Retrieved from Big Chemical Encycloped ia :
http://chempedia.info/page/061113151247010240228226186051060248009217054174/
XnaXia, V. (2012, April 19). Sedimentation. Retrieved from Engineering: Its a Learning &
Informative blog for Engineering Students:
http://engrsl.blogspot.com/2012/04/sedimentation.html
Appendices

A. Raw Data

Table 1. Varying amounts of cornstarch per liter of water


Type Amount of Volume of water Concentration Diameter
cornstarch (g) (L) (cm)
Slurry A 25.03 1.00 25.03 g/L 4.92
Slurry B 49.98 1.00 49.98 g/L 4.94
Slurry C 75.10 1.00 75.10 g/L 4.98
Slurry D 100.22 1.00 100.22 g/L 5.05

Table 2. Interphase readings per time interval


Slurry A Slurry B Slurry C Slurry D
t, (min) Clear Transition Settled Clear Transition Settled Clear Transition Settled Clear Transition Settled
zone, Zone, Solids, zone, Zone, Solids, zone, Zone, Solids, zone, Zone, Solids,
(mL) (mL) (mL) (mL) (mL) (mL) (mL) (mL) (mL) (mL) (mL) (mL)
0 0 1000 0 0 1000 0 0 1000 0 0 1000 0
2 0 1000 0 0 1000 0 0 1000 0 0 1000 0
4 5 995 0 2 998 0 1 998 1 1 998 1
6 7 993 0 5 994 1 5 993 2 5 993 2
8 10 989 1 7 992 1 7 990 3 10 987 3
10 12 987 1 12 986 2 10 986 4 12 984 4
12 17 982 1 15 983 2 12 984 4 12 983 5
14 18 980 2 16 981 3 12 983 5 12 982 6
16 20 977 3 16 980 4 13 981 6 13 980 7
18 22 975 3 20 976 4 18 975 7 15 977 8
20 25 972 3 21 974 5 19 973 8 18 973 9
22 30 966 4 25 969 6 20 971 9 20 970 10
24 35 960 5 28 964 8 22 968 10 22 958 20
26 35 957 8 30 960 10 28 959 13 26 949 25
28 36 954 10 32 957 11 30 955 15 28 947 25
30 40 949 11 34 953 13 31 949 20 29 941 30
32 45 943 12 40 946 14 34 945 21 31 931 38
34 48 939 13 42 943 15 37 938 25 34 926 40
36 50 937 13 45 939 16 40 934 26 36 922 42
38 55 931 14 46 938 16 41 929 30 38 916 46
40 56 930 14 47 933 20 42 923 35 40 913 47
42 58 924 18 48 927 25 43 920 37 41 911 48
44 59 922 19 49 924 27 45 915 40 42 909 49
46 60 921 19 50 923 27 46 914 40 43 908 49
48 61 920 19 52 920 28 48 911 41 45 906 49
50 63 918 19 54 918 28 50 909 41 48 903 49
52 65 916 19 55 917 28 51 908 41 50 900 50
54 66 915 19 56 916 28 52 907 41 51 899 50
56 67 913 20 57 914 29 53 905 42 52 897 51
58 68 912 20 58 911 31 54 904 42 53 896 51
60 69 911 20 59 910 31 55 900 45 54 895 51
62 70 909 21 60 905 35 57 898 45 55 890 55
64 71 908 21 61 902 37 58 896 46 56 889 55
66 72 906 22 64 896 40 60 892 48 57 883 60
68 75 903 22 65 895 40 61 889 50 60 880 60
70 80 897 23 68 885 47 64 885 51 61 877 62
75 90 885 25 70 880 50 68 881 51 65 872 63
80 95 875 30 78 870 52 75 870 55 71 859 70
85 100 868 32 87 860 53 79 865 56 75 854 71
90 108 859 33 93 854 53 84 856 60 82 844 74
95 112 855 33 95 852 53 87 851 62 85 830 85
100 120 847 33 100 847 53 92 846 62 90 825 85
105 125 839 36 103 844 53 99 838 63 96 819 85
110 130 833 37 108 837 55 102 828 70 99 813 88
115 140 822 38 111 833 56 103 827 70 101 809 90
120 145 816 39 118 822 60 110 818 72 104 804 92
125 150 810 40 122 817 61 116 812 72 110 796 94
130 155 804 41 130 807 63 121 806 73 115 788 97
145 175 784 41 150 787 63 135 785 80 130 765 105
160 190 768 42 165 772 63 147 770 83 145 747 108
175 212 746 42 180 757 63 165 752 83 158 731 111
180 220 738 42 188 748 64 175 741 84 164 724 112
267 320 638 42 290 645 65 250 660 90 220 660 120
370 440 518 42 410 522 68 350 559 91 310 568 122
475 530 428 42 470 461 69 380 529 91 370 507 123
615 800 158 42 625 306 69 650 259 91 575 302 123
708 925 32 43 875 55 70 825 83 92 800 76 124
841 957 0 43 930 0 70 908 0 92 876 0 124
1435 957 0 43 930 0 70 908 0 92 876 0 124

Table 3. Interphase Height and Settling Rate per time interval


Slurry A Slurry B Slurry C Slurry D
t, Interphas Settling Interphas Settling Interphas Settling Interphas Settling
(min e Height Rate e Height Rate e Height Rate e Height Rate
) (cm) (cm/min) (cm) (cm/min) (cm) (cm/min) (cm) (cm/min)
0 52.62598 0 52.2007 0 51.36553 0 49.9514 0
2 52.62598 0 52.2007 0 51.36553 0 49.9514 0
0.13156 0.05220 0.02568 0.02497
4
52.36285 5 52.0963 1 51.31416 3 49.90145 6
0.05262 0.07830 0.10273 0.09990
6
52.2576 6 51.9397 1 51.1087 1 49.70164 3
0.07893 0.05220 0.05136 0.12487
8
52.09972 9 51.8353 1 51.00597 6 49.45188 8
0.05262 0.13050 0.07704 0.02497
10
51.99447 6 51.57429 2 50.85187 8 49.40193 6
0.13156 0.07830 0.02568 0.02497
12
51.73134 5 51.41769 1 50.80051 3 49.35198 6
0.02631 0.02568 0.02497
14
51.67872 3 51.36549 0.0261 50.74914 3 49.30203 6
0.05262 0.05220 0.02568 0.02497
16
51.57346 6 51.26109 1 50.69777 3 49.25208 6
0.05262 0.05220 0.12841 0.02497
18
51.46821 6 51.15669 1 50.44095 4 49.20213 6
0.07893 0.02568 0.07492
20
51.31033 9 51.10449 0.0261 50.38958 3 49.05227 7
0.13156 0.10440 0.02568 0.04995
22
51.0472 5 50.89569 1 50.33822 3 48.95237 1
0.10525 0.07830 0.05136 0.04995
24
50.8367 2 50.73908 1 50.23549 6 48.85247 1
0.02631 0.05220 0.15409 0.09990
26
50.78407 3 50.63468 1 49.92729 7 48.65266 3
0.02631 0.05220 0.05136 0.04995
28
50.73145 3 50.53028 1 49.82456 6 48.55276 1
0.10525 0.05220 0.02568 0.02497
30
50.52094 2 50.42588 1 49.7732 3 48.50281 6
0.13156 0.15660 0.07704 0.04995
32
50.25781 5 50.11268 2 49.6191 8 48.4029 1
0.07893 0.05220 0.07704 0.07492
34
50.09994 9 50.00827 1 49.465 8 48.25305 7
0.05262 0.07830 0.07704 0.04995
36
49.99468 6 49.85167 1 49.31091 8 48.15315 1
0.13156 0.02568 0.04995
38
49.73155 5 49.79947 0.0261 49.25954 3 48.05324 1
0.02631 0.02568 0.04995
40
49.67893 3 49.74727 0.0261 49.20817 3 47.95334 1
0.05262 0.02568 0.02497
42
49.57368 6 49.69507 0.0261 49.15681 3 47.90339 6
0.02631 0.05136 0.02497
44
49.52105 3 49.64287 0.0261 49.05408 6 47.85344 6
0.02631 0.02568 0.02497
46
49.46842 3 49.59067 0.0261 49.00271 3 47.80349 6
0.02631 0.05220 0.05136 0.04995
48
49.4158 3 49.48627 1 48.89998 6 47.70358 1
0.05262 0.05220 0.05136 0.07492
50
49.31055 6 49.38187 1 48.79725 6 47.55373 7
0.05262 0.02568 0.04995
52
49.2053 6 49.32966 0.0261 48.74588 3 47.45383 1
0.02631 0.02568 0.02497
54
49.15267 3 49.27746 0.0261 48.69452 3 47.40388 6
0.02631 0.02568 0.02497
56
49.10004 3 49.22526 0.0261 48.64315 3 47.35392 6
0.02631 0.02568 0.02497
58
49.04742 3 49.17306 0.0261 48.59179 3 47.30397 6
0.02631 0.02568 0.02497
60
48.99479 3 49.12086 0.0261 48.54042 3 47.25402 6
0.02631 0.05136 0.02497
62
48.94217 3 49.06866 0.0261 48.43769 6 47.20407 6
0.02631 0.02568 0.02497
64
48.88954 3 49.01646 0.0261 48.38633 3 47.15412 6
0.02631 0.07830 0.05136 0.02497
66
48.83691 3 48.85986 1 48.2836 6 47.10417 6
0.07893 0.02568 0.07492
68
48.67904 9 48.80766 0.0261 48.23223 3 46.95431 7
0.13156 0.07830 0.07704 0.02497
70
48.41591 5 48.65106 1 48.07813 8 46.90436 6
0.10525 0.04109 0.03996
75
47.88965 2 48.54665 0.02088 47.87267 2 46.70456 1
0.05262 0.08352 0.07191 0.05994
80
47.62652 6 48.12905 1 47.51311 2 46.40485 2
0.05262 0.09396 0.04109 0.03996
85
47.36339 6 47.65924 1 47.30765 2 46.20504 1
0.08420 0.06264 0.05136 0.06993
90
46.94238 2 47.34604 1 47.05082 6 45.85538 2
0.04210 0.03081 0.02997
95
46.73187 1 47.24164 0.02088 46.89673 9 45.70553 1
0.08420 0.05220 0.05136 0.04995
100
46.31087 2 46.98063 1 46.6399 6 45.45577 1
0.05262 0.07191 0.05994
105
46.04774 6 46.82403 0.03132 46.28034 2 45.15606 2
0.05262 0.05220 0.03081 0.02997
110
45.78461 6 46.56303 1 46.12624 9 45.00621 1
0.10525 0.01027 0.01998
115
45.25835 2 46.40643 0.03132 46.07488 3 44.90631 1
0.05262 0.07308 0.07191 0.02997
120
44.99522 6 46.04102 1 45.71532 2 44.75645 1
0.05262 0.04176 0.06163 0.05994
125
44.73209 6 45.83222 1 45.40713 9 44.45674 2
0.05262 0.08352 0.05136 0.04995
130
44.46896 6 45.41461 1 45.1503 6 44.20699 1
0.07016 0.06960 0.04794 0.04995
145
43.41644 8 44.3706 1 44.43118 1 43.45772 1
0.05262 0.05220 0.04109 0.04995
160
42.62705 6 43.58759 1 43.81479 2 42.70844 1
0.07718 0.05220 0.06163 0.04329
175
41.46928 5 42.80458 1 42.89021 9 42.05908 1
0.08420 0.08352 0.10273 0.05994
180
41.04827 2 42.38697 1 42.37656 1 41.75937 2
0.06120 0.04428 0.03215
267
35.78567 0.06049 37.0625 1 38.52415 1 38.96209 3
0.06131 0.06081 0.04986 0.04364
370
29.47055 2 30.79841 6 33.38759 9 34.46646 7
0.04510 0.02982 0.01467 0.02854
475
24.73421 8 27.66637 9 31.84663 6 31.46938 4
0.10149 0.09906 0.07314
615
10.5252 3 14.35519 0.09508 17.97793 2 21.22934 3
0.07073 0.08419 0.09665
708
3.946949 4 6.525088 5 8.988967 6 9.990279 0.12085
0.01266 0.02158 0.03205 0.02854
841
2.262917 2 3.654049 7 4.725628 5 6.193973 4
1435 2.262917 0 3.654049 0 4.725628 0 6.193973 0
B. Sample Calculations

For Slurry A:
Internal diameter of graduated cylinder: 4.92 cm
Cross-sectional are of graduated cylinder:

= 2
4

= 4.922
4
= 19.002 2
Conversion of volume to height:

=

1000 3
=
19.002 2
= 52.626
Determination of settling rate:
1
1 = 2
2 1

52.3629 52.626
1 =
42

1 = 0.13156

C. Photos

Figure 6. Cornstarch slurries at their final compression stage

Figure 7. Interphase at various time interval