Most of the published literature on reactive distillation (RD) has been focussed mainly on aspects such as conceptual design with the aid of residue curve maps, steady-state multiplicity and bifurcations, and development of equilibrium (EQ) stage and rigorous non-equilibrium (NEQ) steady-state and dynamic models [1, 2]. Relatively little attention has been paid to hardware design. In this chapter the concepts underlying the selection of the appropriate hardware for RD columns are discussed. For RD column design, detailed information on hydrodynamics and mass transfer for the chosen hardware is required, but this information is often lacking. Modern tools such as computational fluid dynamics (CFD) can be invaluable aids in hydrodynamic and mass-transfer studies.
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