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Inactive Spacers For Optimizing Hydraulic Loading In Packed Columns

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000019376D
Publication Date: 2003-Sep-12
Document File: 3 page(s) / 742K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

Cryogenic air separation distillation columns which employ structured packing can have multiple packed sections in order to accommodate incoming and outgoing liquid and vapor streams along with distributors and redistributors. Thus in general the liquid and vapor loading will vary in the different sections. To maximize the utilization of the packing it is desirable to operate each section as close to its flooding limit as possible, such as 75 - 85% of flooding velocity. There are several ways to accomplish this objective.

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Inactive Spacers For Optimizing Hydraulic Loading In Packed Columns

Cryogenic air separation distillation columns which employ structured packing can have multiple packed sections in order to accommodate incoming and outgoing liquid and vapor streams along with distributors and redistributors. Thus in general the liquid and vapor loading will vary in the different sections. To maximize the utilization of the packing it is desirable to operate each section as close to its flooding limit as possible, such as 75 - 85% of flooding velocity. There are several ways to accomplish this objective.

The simplest method is to optimize each section individually, which can result in different diameters in each section. This can be especially true if one limits the choice of packing to just one type in all of the packed sections. The different diameter sections can then be connected to each other by means such as conical transitions between the different diameter sections. But this method may not be cost effective if it adds substantial extra labor and column heights where the coned sections are present.

In some situations it is more advantageous to use the same diameter for all of the packed sections. This may reduce manufacturing costs. In order to obtain optimum loading with this system, two methods are known from the patent literature. Lockett et al(1) describe the use of variable surface area density packing in each section, such that every section is loaded to the same fraction of flood. McKeigue et al(2) describe the use of variable crimp angle packing in each section for the same purpose.

The current disclosure descri...