The major sources of solvent losses in hydrogen peroxide production and how to calculate them. Hydrogen peroxide is a chemical used across a host of applications like wastewater treatment, chemical synthesis, bleaching (pulp paper, textile, etc,.), metal processing, microelectronics, cosmetics, and healthcare to name a few. In the production of Hydrogen peroxide - solvents loss is a key factor affecting the cost of production. An efficient solvent recovery process brings these costs down. As a result, manufacturers take stock of Kilograms of solvent lost against the kilograms of production regularly, keep an eye on solvent losses and take the needful steps to optimize recovery.
There are three major sources where solvent loss can happen:
- From storage tank vents
- From the reactor outlets
- From Solvent vapour gas outlets
- From Storage Tanks: The storage tanks are regularly emptied and refilled. When the tanks are empty the whole space in the tank is filled with solvent vapour with remaining solvent. The vapour is in equilibrium with total pressure. The vapour in the tank is pushed out whenever the tank is refilled, thus causing solvent loss.
- From the Reactor Outlets: Solvent losses happen from the Reactor also called the Oxidiser. The hydrogen peroxide production involves oxidization of the hydrogenated working solution. This oxidation is done by air. As outlet of the oxidizer carries over the solvent vapour this is where the vapours are recovered and pushed back into the process.
- From Solvent Vapour Gas Outlets: In a Gas scrubber the solvent vapour is introduced from the bottom of scrubber and scrubbing solution is fed from top. The Scrubbing efficiency indicates whether the out of gas scrubber needs further recovery of solvent vapour.
How is the solvent loss calculated?
In all the cases the solvent loss can be calculated by knowing the vapour pressure data at working temperature and pressure.
Sv - Solvent saturation Vapour pressure at operating temperature and pressure
Pt - Total pressure at the system.
Then: Sv/Pt = vapour fraction = Mol Fraction.
With Mol fraction we can find the solvent loss per product unit.
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