Anda di halaman 1dari 7


[Pharma Engineering]
Site Address:



[This PDF gives you the brief outline for designing the industrial distillation column regarding pharma
This Page is Intentionally Left Blank
Column Of Industrial Solvent Recovery
Distillation Column:

Just Follow the steps for the design

1) List out the following specifications needed to find out the right design for our column, such as,
F=amount of feed that we want to process
D=amount of distillate,
W= residue amount,
Xf=molefraction of the desired component in the mixture,
Xd=molefraction of the desired component in the distillate i.e., top product,
Xw=molefraction of the desired component in the residue mass,
α =relative volatility, i.e., the ratio of the vapor pressures at the temp where we have to carry
our distillation,
the vapor pressures can be found from the available charts or can be calculated from the
antonie equation, i.e., logp=A-B/(T+c), the antonie constants can be found on internet, be
careful while selecting the antonie constants as they vary from temperature to temperature.

Material balance equations used if any specification is not mentioned

2) Plot a x-y on a graph paper , i.e., a 450 line,

3) And then plot our equilibrium line from x-y data, that can be calculated from the equation,
Y=(α*X)/(1+(α-1)X), and the equilibrium line will look a like,
4) Then lets point out the Xw, Xf, Xd on the x-axis and project it onto the 450 line,

Xw Xf Xd

5) Now its turn to draw the operating lines for the feed section, enriching section(i.e., for top
product), and stripping section,

Xw Xf Xd

Sketch for Feed operating line , i.e., q-line

Q line depends on the feed condition, i.e., whether feed is at bubble point, dew point, saturated
feed, subcooled feed etc,

Liquid at boiling point


Liquid + vapor Liquid below boiling point

0<q<1 q>1

Saturated vapor , q=0,

Bubble point

Superheated vapor


6) So now I’ll consider our feed as saturated vapor, then my feed operating line is a horizontal one,
Xw Xf Xd
Now have to construct the enriching section operating line, i.e., by just projecting a line from the
point (where the Xd projection meets the 450 line) to the point where feed operating line meets
our equilibrium curve,


Xw Xf Xd

So now we have constructed the enriching section operating line and also I did one thing
in extra, i.e., extending that operating line to the y-axis, because the intersection point gives a
clue regarding the reflux ratio, now we can calculate the reflux ratio from the intersection point
by equating the Y1 to Xd/(R+1).

Xd- we can get the specifications,
Y1- from the graph

Now the way for constructing the stripping section operating line will be a bit easy, to
construct that we need to construct a line from the intersection point of Xw projection to 450
line to the intersection of feed operating line and enriching section operating line, try as below,


Xw Xf Xd

Equations for the operating lines of enriching, feed are as follows

Y=(R/R+1)X+Xd/(R+1)------enriching section
Y=(q/q-1)X-Xf/(q-1)-----------feed section
7) Calculation of minimum reflux ratio, which can be defined as the ratio which is applicable when
column is operated with infinite number of trays for achieving the required sepeartion of Xd and
Xw. We can get it fortunately from graph,

So now for calculating the minimum reflux ratio we need to calculate it from graph,



Xf Xd
Xw X1

8) Time for calculating the theoritical trays, construct a step wise pattern over the operating lines
from Xd to Xw as shown below, and add them

So here we got 3 trays from graph and adding a partial reboiler gives us the total
number of plates, so its total 4.
9) Feed Tray location:
Its quite simple for locating a feed tray, the tray which is intersected by the q-line gives us the
feed tray, in our case the q-line meets the 3rd tray while intersecting the equilibrium curve, so
the 3rd tray would be the feed tray, where the feed need to be entered.

10) Calculating Height of column:

To calculate the height of column we need to multiply the number of trays with tray spacing,
Height of column= total plates* tray spacing.

We need to consider tray spacing in between 1 and 1.5m,

11) Calculating the column diameter,
For calculating the column dia we need to calculate the vapor velocity, for a successful column
design we need to consider the vapor velocity as 50 to 80% of flooding velocity
For calculating the vapor velocity,
ρL-Liquid density
ρV-vapor density
kv-vapor load at column top

Kv can be calculated using the following formula G

FLV=(LW/VW)*sqrt(ρv/ ρL)
LW=L1*MWave D
Condenser duty= G*δHVap
Reboiler duty=L1* δHVap+L1*Cp*δT

column dia=VW/(0.85*VV) m

here I considered the vapor

velocity as 85% of flooding velocity. W

That’s it.. 

For designing a Packed tower we need to using packing material instead of the trays
such as 752y, that depends on the pressure that the packing must withstand