Faculty Advisor

Dixon, Anthony G.

Abstract

The field of computational fluid dynamics (CFD) revolutionized research in the field of fluid dynamics because of its ability to numerically solve difficult systems of equations. Recently CFD has been applied to chemical reaction engineering problems. The reaction investigated in this study is the esterification of methanol and acetic acid over a B-zeolite catalyst. First, kinetic parameters describing this reaction were determined via experimentation. Then both 3D CFD simulations and 1D multiphysics simulations of diffusion and reaction were conducted and compared. Diffusion and reaction limitations were characterized and observed intra-pellet concentration gradients were examined. Qualitative comparisons between the 3D CFD results and H-NMR analysis are also discussed.

Publisher

Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Date Accepted

April 2011

Major

Chemical Engineering

Project Type

Major Qualifying Project

Accessibility

Unrestricted

Advisor Department

Chemical Engineering

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