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Keywords:

  • crystallization processes;
  • high-gain observer;
  • nonlinear identification;
  • population balance equations;
  • crystal-size distribution;
  • finite difference method

Abstract

A high-gain observer was designed to estimate the crystal-size distribution (CSD) in batch crystallization processes. The observer is based on the discretization of population balance equations describing the evolution of the CSD using finite difference method. Due to process impurities and other batch-to-batch variations, the kinetic parameters involved in the dynamic model of the crystallization, relating primary and secondary nucleation in particular, are subject to significant variations. In order to avoid any estimation divergence, an on-line parameter identification algorithm was added to the observer. Assuming that measurements of the nuclei particles are available, the observer is shown to provide a discretized reconstruction of the entire CSD which can be used for control purposes or process supervision. © 2006 American Institute of Chemical Engineers AIChE J, 2006