Simulation and Design of Thermosyphon Reboiler Systems

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Andrew W. Sloley
The Distillation Group, Inc.*
P.O. Box 10105
College Station, Texas 77842-0105

Gary R. Martin
Process Consulting Services Inc.
P.O. Box 1447
Grapevine, Texas 76099-1447

Presented at the
AIChE Spring Meeting
20 April 1994, Atlanta

Abstract copyright Andrew W. Sloley

Thermosyphon reboilers provide a simple, low-maintenance design for distillation tower reboiler systems. Design of true thermosyphon exchangers requires an intimate knowledge of a distillation tower's heat balance, temperature levels, and pressure balance in the reboiler loop. Depending on system relative volatilities, the temperature levels vary strongly with composition gradients. This paper compares the commonly used simulation networks for different thermosyphon exchanger-distillation tower configurations. The implications on exchanger design of the correct and incorrect simulation configuration will be shown in case studies of two industrial units. The two cases compare a low relative volatility (alpha) system (ethylene-ethane splitter) and a high alpha system (fluid catalytic cracking unit deethanizer). Main factors presented include impact on equipment size and design. Proper design criteria for the simulation of the thermosyphon exchanger and distillation tower and for integrating process and equipment design are shown.

26 pages.
Electronic versions available in Adobe Acrobat PDF format files 016.PDF 440k.

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This page updated June 1, 1999.
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