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Experimental investigation of liquid distribution over structured packing



The thickness of a liquid film on the structured packing inside a distillation column was measured at the region of counter-current flow of gas and liquid by fiber-optic sensors. The local distribution of liquid inside a typical geometrical cell formed by the corrugated Koch 1Y sheets was examined in this study. It is shown that, in the vicinity of the sheet contact points inside the cell, the liquid film thickness is maximal, and peculiar meniscuses are formed where liquid flow redistribution over the corrugation surface occurs. A counter gas flow decreases pulsations of the liquid film thickness by a factor of 1.5–2 on the rib and lateral surfaces of corrugation. Experimental data on the effect of operation parameters on the local distribution of liquid in the cell and the pressure drop in the column are presented. © 2008 American Institute of Chemical Engineers AIChE J, 2008