Chemical Engineering Research & Design, Vol.125, 257-264, 2017
Phase holdup distribution and dispersion performance in a novel liquid-liquid cyclone reactor of isobutane alkylation catalyzed by ionic liquid
To improve the existing problems of traditional reactors for isobutane alkylation catalyzed by ionic liquid, a novel liquid-liquid cyclone reactor (LLCR) was designed for the liquid-liquid heterogeneous reaction. The LLCR mainly includes two parts: a reaction chamber and a separation chamber, so the isobutene alkylation reaction and separation between the products and catalyst could occur in the same reactor. Compared with the traditional hydrocyclone, the LLCR consists of two kinds of inlets, one for the light phase and one for the heavy phase. The light phase is injected into the reactor through two symmetric tangential slots in the inlet, while the heavy phase inlet is an axial entry with a guided vane. The phase holdup distribution and dispersion uniformity of light phase in the LLCR were investigated using a novel sampling device and software MATLAB R2012b. One special radius was proposed, rs, which separated the reaction chamber into two parts: upward flow and mixing area. Experimental results indicate that when the total inlet flow is 2 m(3)/h, the flow field in the LLCR is irregular. Moreover, the discharge of the upward flow timely benefits the stability of flow field in the LLCR. Besides, a new parameter, dispersion uniformity of the light phase, beta, was used to evaluate the dispersion performance of the light phase in LLCR. By analyzing the dispersion uniformity under different operational parameters, the dispersion of the light phase becomes more desirable under high total inlet flow, feed ratio and overflow ratio. (C) 2017 Institution of Chemical Engineers. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.