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Towards a Unified Model on the Description and Design of Process Operations: Extending the concept of Separation Units to Particle Sedimentation

Author(s):

Julio L. Bueno de las Heras, Antonio Gutiérrez-Lavín, Manuel María Mahamud-López*, Marisol Muñiz-Álvarez and Patricia Rodríguez-López  

Abstract:


Analogy is a well known and efficient tool, not only in the interpretation of events with academic or coaching purposes, but also in the generalized modelling, prospective, innovation, analysis and synthesis of technological processes. Classical models for hindered sedimentation allow solid flux in the direction of the gravity to be formulated by analogy to changes obeying a potential, as molecular transfer in the direction of the gradient and chemical transformation throughout the reaction coordinate. Bridging the gap between levels of description, microscopic (gradient in transport and affinity in conversion) and macroscopic (convective and segregative macrofluid flow), different design conceptions can converge in a unitary way of formulation that consolidates the analogy and parallelism in the description of unit operations. This article introduces and justify the fundamentals of such a suggestive generalized analogy through the definition of the time of the sedimentation unit (TSU), the area of a sedimentation unit (ASU) and the number of sedimentation units (NSU) , as intensive and extensive components of a particular case of a common type of sizing equation These new concepts and method, compatible and complementary with others handled at length, try to contribute to the integration of some, although useful, marginal, imaginative, heuristic or rustic procedures for the design of settlers and thickeners, into a unified methodology previously defined in the specialized bibliography and theoretically and practically consolidated by use in Chemical Engineering: a generalized extension of the analogy on the design of unit operations of transference and transformation.

Keywords:

Unit operations, Separation processes, Design, Particle technology, Sedimentation

Affiliation:

Dept. Chemical and Environmental Engineering, University of Oviedo. Faculty of Chemistry, 33006-Oviedo, Dept. Chemical and Environmental Engineering, University of Oviedo. Faculty of Chemistry, 33006-Oviedo, Dept. Chemical and Environmental Engineering, University of Oviedo. Faculty of Chemistry, 33006-Oviedo, Dept. Chemical and Environmental Engineering, University of Oviedo. Faculty of Chemistry, 33006-Oviedo, Dept. Chemical and Environmental Engineering, University of Oviedo. Faculty of Chemistry, 33006-Oviedo



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