Many systems work well at the small scale. Many innovations can be demonstrated under laboratory conditions. Glassware runs are important to start the development to a commercial scale system. Scaling up a system from the bench to a production plant is an art to itself.
Critical to success is the ability to identify commercial scale effects while stair stepping the critical unit operations to the size they will be installed in the commercial system. Front to back full scaling may not be the right pathway. However, there are critical units in any system that will make or break the overall venture. Decoupling these and studying the scale up requirements needed to ensure success while relying on the simple parametric scale up of proven units allow for more detailed focus on the critical areas. This method reduces scale up time, reduces development cost and has a higher probability of success.
The use of statistically based tools to understand the main effects of each characteristic of each unit provides independent information that drives the creation of meaningful correlations that enables the proper engineering of the system for integrated success.
For example, in the past a team would desire to run a 1:10 scale demonstration plant from front to back for the proposed system, the de-scaling issues could easily hide the spatial relationships that drive heat and mass transfer thus leading to carry over problems that are addressed in subsequent units in the train that leads to under and over design in the large scale system. Usually the system cannot be tested to limit to understand the cliffs and the correlations of the individual unit operation due to the interdependent effects on the downstream processes.
The more successful development path is to individually isolate each unit operation defining a rigorous set of interdependent parameters with high quality process and analytical data to fully characterize the performance of the system at its boundary limits. This method is more complex to manage and takes a rigorous application of ANOVA and other statistical methods, but it is proven that the correlations and integration of the units is based upon a stronger understanding of the design and operation of each unit thus reducing the overall scale up risk in the system.
Chemical Process Project Workflow Steps
Process Studies Method Steps
Process Development Component Tools
Process Development is a complex chemical engineering workflow that requires rigor, discipline and organization. The more refined and simpler that information generated is presented the greater degree of continued success.
Simplification and communication enables:
The Process Development Component Tools explains in detail the process behind the Engineering development efforts that support the Design Basis.
The analytical team follows a rigorous and statistically based validation and qualification process to deliver repeatable data and clarity in the confidence of each data point presented.
An Obvious at a Glance (OAG) presentation format is used to present the validation data for all methods.
Process: 3SC, EO, KLR
The Engineering Development Process follows the following workflow:
The engineering development efforts are captured in the various EO and KLR reports verifying and clarifying parameters to be fed into the System Parameter Design Basis.
System Parameter Design Basis (SPDB)
The System Parameter Design Basis (SPDB) details the operational basis and design parameters per block for the design. The Demo Plant Mass Balancecaptures the most recent demo plant mass balance and is used to further confirm SPDB parameters.
Scale Up Information Set
Engineered Systems Information Development
Design Basis Justification - report design against criteria in bases
Equipment Selection Justification – bring cut sheets to show how specified functional intention was met
Equipment and Instruments
Pressure Testing, Cleaning, Flushing, and Drying
A. Electric power and lighting
C. Cooling water
D. Service air
E. Floor drains and sumps
H. Inert Gas
I. Fuel Oil
J. Fuel Gas
Safety Procedural Applications to Equipment and System
Safety Relief Valves
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