• internal thermally coupled distillation;
  • high purity control;
  • generalised predictive control;
  • adaptive


Internal thermally coupled distillation column (ITCDIC) is a frontier in the energy-saving distillation researches. One of the bottlenecks to prevent the column from being commercialised is the difficulty in control design due to the high sensitivity to disturbances, strong asymmetric nonlinearity and inverse response especially under high purity. An adaptive multivariable generalised predictive control (AM-GPC) strategy of ITCDIC process is proposed to solve the difficulties in high purity. The simulation results of AM-GPC are compared with single input and single output GPC (S-GPC), multivariable GPC (M-GPC), modified IMC (M-IMC) and traditional PID control in detail. The performances confirm the accuracy and validity of AM-GPC for the high-purity ITCDIC process. © 2011 Canadian Society for Chemical Engineering