Optimal Design and Effective Control of Triple-Column Extractive Distillation for Separating Ethyl Acetate/Ethanol/Water with Multiazeotrope

Ao Yang, Hechen Zou, I. Lung Chien, Dan Wang, Shun'An Wei, Jingzheng Ren, Weifeng Shen

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

89 Citations (Scopus)


The separation of the ternary nonideal system ethyl acetate (EtAC)/ethanol (EtOH)/water with multiazeotropes is very important since they are always generated in the production process of n-butanol synthesis from ethanol, which is much more difficult due to the formation of the multiazeotrope and distillation boundary. Herein, a systematic conceptual design, optimization, and control approach for ternary extractive distillation of multiazeotrope mixtures EtAC/EtOH/water is proposed. The procedure involves entrainer screening, conceptual design, global optimization, process evaluation, and a robust control strategy. The optimization results demonstrate that the total annual cost, exergy loss, and carbon dioxide emissions of the proposed triple-column extractive distillation are significantly reduced compared with those of the existing process. Dynamic performances illustrate that the improved dual temperature and feedforward control strategy can well handle the three product purities, while two kinds of disturbances (i.e., feed flow rate and composition) are introduced.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7265-7283
Number of pages19
JournalIndustrial and Engineering Chemistry Research
Issue number17
Publication statusPublished - 4 Apr 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering

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