Particle dynamics in horizontal stirred bed reactors characterized by single-photon emission radioactive particle tracking

P. Christian van der Sande*, Evert C. Wagner, Jack de Mooij, Gabrie M.H. Meesters, J. Ruud van Ommen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

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Abstract

Horizontal stirred bed reactors are widely used in the commercial manufacturing of polypropylene. However, a comprehensive understanding of the particle dynamics in horizontal stirred bed reactors remains elusive, primarily due to the lack of detailed experimental data. In this work, we studied the influence of operating parameters on the particle flow dynamics in a laboratory-scale horizontal stirred bed reactor using single-photon emission radioactive particle tracking. The results show that the general solids flow behavior is strongly affected by both the agitator rotation speed and reactor fill level. Operation at low rotation speed and low fill level results in solids flow with poor radial and circumferential distribution due to internal bed circulation. On the contrary, at increased rotation speeds and fill levels, solids motion throughout the bed is continuous resulting in excellent solids distribution. The solids circulation was found to increase for both an increase in rotation speed and reactor fill level. The axial dispersion coefficient, on the other hand, shows a linear relation with the rotation speed, but no conclusive relation between the axial dispersion coefficient and the reactor fill level was found.

Original languageEnglish
Article number149100
JournalChemical Engineering Journal
Volume482
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2024

Keywords

  • Horizontal stirred bed reactors
  • Multiphase reactors
  • Polypropylene
  • Radioactive particle tracking
  • Reactor optimization

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