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Design Guidelines for
Distillation Revamps

Karl Kolmetz
KLM Technology Group

Stephen J Wallace

Wallace Consulting

Mee Shee Tiong

KLM Technology Group

Prepared for,


Best Practices Conference


In most chemical processing systems two main unit operations dominate; chemical reaction followed by separation. From the reactor the reactants are then sent to a separation unit. In the separation unit, the reactants are separated into desired products, unreacted products for recycle, and unwanted or by products.

Distillation is the most common separation technique and is energy intensive. Distillation can consume more than 50% of a process plantís operating energy cost.  A way to improve an existing plantís operating cost is to improve the efficiency and operations of the distillation unit by correct equipment selection, process optimization and control.


A review of successful and not so successful revamps can help develop guide lines for the implementation of future successful distillation revamps.  Case studies of successful revamps will be reviewed and guide lines developed from these case studies.



Introduction to the presentation