Conceptual design of distillation processes for mixtures with distillation boundaries. II. Optimization of recycle policies



Geometric design methods for the conceptual design of azeotropic distillation processes are fast and efficient tools for the economic screening of different process alternatives. The second article of this two-part series presents a novel optimization-based conceptual design framework for azeotropic distillation processes, which allows a rapid screening of the different process alternatives with respect to feasibility and economic incentive. The design framework is based on the economic assessment of distillation columns by the rectification body method. The feasibility limits imposed by the azeotropes are incorporated using the split feasibility test introduced in the first part of this series. The application of the framework is highlighted with several ternary and quaternary process alternatives for the production of high-purity alcohols. © 2010 American Institute of Chemical Engineers AIChE J, 2011