Bifurcation analysis in heterogeneous azeotropic distillation

Soemantri Widagdo, Warren D. Seider, Donald H. Sebastian

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


Parameterization with respect to the aqueous reflux ratio has been carried out for the steady‐state analysis of a tower to dehydrate secbutanol using disecondary butyl ether as the entrainer. With an equilibrium‐stage model, singularities are observed as the second liquid phase is introduced on the trays and regions of steady‐state multiplicity are demonstrated. Furthermore, a critical aqueous reflux ratio, in the vicinity of which two liquid phases are introduced on most of the trays, varies only slightly with the number of trays in the tower. The model predicts that the product purities and recoveries remain high using one‐third of the trays in the industrial SBA‐II tower. Bifurcation analysis for a single stage does not explain these observations, and the effect of recycle is suspected.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1457-1464
Number of pages8
JournalAIChE Journal
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1989
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biotechnology
  • Environmental Engineering
  • General Chemical Engineering


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