13 Feb 05 15:44
To increase the throughput on your vessel you need to increase the settling rates and improve coalescing.
Settling rates are a function of droplet size, the gravity difference between the fluids being separated and the viscosity of the continuous phase.
To create optimum separation conditions you need to do the following: -
- Maximise droplet sizes in the vessel by minimising shear upstream of the vessel (No unnecessary pressure drops!) and by installing media in the vessel that encourages droplet growth (coalescing media).
- Creating optimum settling rates by adjusting the feed temperature. The optimum feed temperature can be determined by calculating the settling velocity using Stokes law, over a range of feed temperatures. If the feed temperature is to be increased remember you may have to increase cooling capacity downstream of the vessel.
The cost of providing additional heat input upstream of the vessel (larger heat exchangers and fuel\utility costs) together with the costs of installing new coalescing media within the vessels should be compared to simply installing larger vessels to increase residence time.
If you are not used to carrying out these evaluations yourself it might be worth enlisting the services of a design house or consultant who will be helpful in formulating an overall execution plan for carrying out the upgrade.