Application examples of Corning Advanced Flow reactors

Tens of reactions have already been successfully tested with Corning® Advanced-FlowTM reactors, including reactions with miscible and immiscible liquids, gases utilization and gases release as well as reactions involving solids formation. Translating lab-scale experiments or pilot-scale tests to the industrial scale production line, we've made estimates of the economic advantage of Corning reactor-based lines over comparable traditional batch processes for several tested applications. Below, detail is provided on two examples of industrial scale operations assessment. For each case, the assessment of potential economic effect was made considering the following five process characteristics: utilities and raw materials costs, labour, capital depreciation cost, process yield and product quality as well as product throughput.

The first case covers a nitration plant with an annual capacity of 400 tons of end-product. The basis for this case is a pilot system being successfully used for selective nitration [7]. Significant benefits for this type of application can be obtained due to the ability to operate at higher concentrations, thus reducing use of solvent, while at the same time improving yield and selectivity. Other factors contributing to cost benefits include significant reduction of the size of the downstream equipment, smaller production line footprint and lower raw material inventory. Additionally, this test case demonstrated the ability to achieve significant reduction in the development cycle, moving from laboratory to production in less than 16 months. Comparison with the same using batch

Fractional chart of CAP EX com pari son for continuous vs. batch plants for selective nitration at 400 tones/year

Fractional chart of CAP EX com pari son for continuous vs. batch plants for selective nitration at 400 tones/year

Fractional chart of OPEX comparison for continuous vs. batch plants for selective nitration at 40 0 tone sty ear

88 Baxh ■Continuous

Figure 2: Fractional CAPEX and OPEX comparison of batch vs. continuous flow production plant for selective nitration.

88 Baxh ■Continuous

Figure 2: Fractional CAPEX and OPEX comparison of batch vs. continuous flow production plant for selective nitration.

process was made, illustrating achievable economic impacts on capital investment and operation cost, fig. 2.

Another example evaluation of Corning® Advanced-Flow™ reactor application is a hydrogenation plant with production capacity of 400 tones/year. The reaction performed is a selective highly exothermic hydrogenation, with application of a noble metal catalyst in slurry combined with hydrogen gas. This case demonstrates a different set of economic advantages of continuous-flow processes over batch production, since the optimized batch reaction demonstrated 100% yield and selectivity [8]. The advantage of continuous process in this case is related to drastic reduction of the reaction time - about 2 minutes for continuous vs. 10 hours in batch. Other benefits of continuous over batch in this case include reduction in the amount of expensive catalyst being used, smaller equipment footprint, and lower cost of the production facility due

Fractional chart of CAPEX comparison for continuous vs. batch plants for selective hy tirogenation at 400 tones ¡"year

1.16

Fractional chart of CAPEX comparison for continuous vs. batch plants for selective hy tirogenation at 400 tones ¡"year

1.16

Fractional chart of OPEX comparison for continuous vs. batch plants for selective hydrogenation at 400 tones/year
Corning Flow Reactor

Batch ■ Continuous

Figure 3: Fractional CAPEX and OPEX comparison of batch vs. continuous flow production plant for selective hydrogenation.

Batch ■ Continuous

Figure 3: Fractional CAPEX and OPEX comparison of batch vs. continuous flow production plant for selective hydrogenation.

to a decrease in the level of safety requirements. The fractional cost comparisons for hydrogenation plant are presented below, fig. 3.

Significant additional advantages can also be achieved, especially in the case of a green-field plant, due to the much smaller plant footprint required. For instance, based on Corning's assessment, the batch line for nitration operating at capacity of 400 tones/year, will require a footprint of 2,927.52 m2, whereas the same production line, employing Corning equipment can be allocated on an area of 455.84 m2. Afterwards, maintenance and utility costs for a smaller production facility will continue to bring additional financial benefit and reduced energy consumption.

Of course, as any known technology Corning® Advanced-Flow™ reactor may have some limitations in applicability and economic benefits. Detailed analysis of applicability and estimates for potential economic benefits should be conducted on a case-by-case basis.

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