A light component balance around the wth tray in the stripping section yields (see Figure 2.20):
This is called the operating-line equation. It has the form of a straight line: y = mx + b. The slope of the line is the ratio of liquid to vapor flow rates in the stripping section. This straight line can be plotted on an x-y diagram (see Figure 2.21).
The intersection of the operating line with the 45° line (where x = y) occurs at xB. This is easily proved by letting the point of intersection be xt = yt. Substituting into equation (2.27) gives:
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