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Keywords:

  • acrylic;
  • polymerization;
  • runaway;
  • pressure relief;
  • process modeling

Abstract

Consequences of acrylic resin reactor runaways can be devastating, as it is evident in investigation reports of industrial accidents. Critical in preventing major accidents is the safety screening of any acrylic resin formula to be manufactured in large scale. Computer model simulations facilitate the evaluation of “layers of protection” against acrylic polymerization runaways. This work describes the adaptation of a chemical process dynamic simulator (DuPont™ TMODS™) for use in simulating acrylic polymerization runaways. “Loss of cooling” and “monomer pooling (accumulation)” scenarios are the causes of these runaways. Simulations show that scenarios leading to “monomer pooling” result in more energetic runaways and to larger emergency relief capacity requirements than “loss of cooling” scenarios. © 2009 American Institute of Chemical Engineers Process Saf Prog, 2009