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Development of Adiabatic Criterion for Runaway Detection and Safe Operating Condition Designing in Semibatch Reactors

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journal contribution
posted on 27.11.2017, 00:00 by Zichao Guo, Liping Chen, Wanghua Chen
To prevent the occurrence of thermal runaway accidents in semibatch reactors (SBRs), it is desirable and practicable to develop criteria that can distinguish between the safe and runaway operating regions. In this article a new safety criterion, namely, the adiabatic criterion, has been developed for SBRs in which liquid homogeneous as well as liquid–liquid heterogeneous reactions with arbitrary reaction orders occur. It states that an SBR is operated in the potential runaway situation if the value of the adiabatic criterion exceeds zero at a segment of the reaction path. Numerical results show that the adiabatic criterion is more conservative than the two other criteria (divergence criterion and target temperature criterion). However, the adiabatic criterion is not suitable to reactions with autocatalytic behaviors. Also knowledge of activation energies and reaction enthalpies is necessary to utilize the adiabatic criterion.