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dc.contributor.authorUtomo, Johan
dc.contributor.supervisorProf. Moses Tade
dc.contributor.supervisorDr. Nicoleta Balliu

This thesis has made two significant contributions to the field of reactive crystallisation. First, new data from batch cooling crystallisation and semi-batch reactive crystallisation experiments of mono-ammonium phosphate (MAP) were obtained to describe the key factors that influence crystal nucleation and growth rates, crystal size distribution (CSD), and crystal shape. The second contribution is the development of a numerical scheme for solving the population balance equations, which can be used to describe the evolution of CSD during the crystallisation process. This scheme combines the finite difference method with a wavelet method, and is the first reported application of this approach for crystallisation modelling and simulation.Experiments into the batch cooling crystallisation of MAP were conducted both with and without seed crystals. The effects of key factors such as cooling rate, initial level of supersaturation and seeding technique, including seed concentration and seed size, on the real time supersaturation, final CSD, crystal yield and crystal shape were investigated. It was found that a seed concentration of 20-30% effectively suppressed nucleation. The growth and nucleation rate were estimated by using an isothermal seeded batch approach and their parameters were calculated by non-linear optimisation techniques.The second series of experiments involved the semi-batch reactive crystallisation of MAP. Both single-feed and dual-feed systems were investigated. In the single-feed arrangement, an ammonia solution was fed into a charge of phosphoric acid. In the dual-feed system, phosphoric acid and ammonia solution were fed into a charge of saturated MAP solution. The molar ratio of the reactants, initial supersaturation, presence or absence of seed crystals, initial MAP concentration, reactants’ flow rate, feeding time and stirring speed were varied, and the effects upon the real time supersaturation, final CSD, crystal yield, crystal shape and solution temperature were measured. X-ray diffraction analysis showed that MAP can be produced in both the single-feed and dual-feed arrangements. For the single feed system, the N/P mole ratio controlled the degree of reaction and the CSD of the product. Di-ammonium phosphate (DAP) was not be observed in the single-feed system due to its high solubility. In the dual-feed system, a seeded solution with slow feed addition, moderate stirring speed and a low initial supersaturation provided the most favourable conditions for generating a desirable supersaturation profile, and thus obtaining a product with good CSD and crystal shape.A comparative numerical study was undertaken in order to evaluate the existing numerical schemes for solving the population balance equations (PBE) that describe crystallisation. Several analytical solutions to the PBE were used to benchmark the following numerical schemes: Upwind Finite Difference, Biased Upwind Finite Difference, Orthogonal Collocation with Finite Elements, and Wavelet Orthogonal Collocation. The Wavelet Finite Difference (WFD) method has been applied here for the first time for solving PBE problems. The WFD scheme was adapted to solve the batch cooling and the semi-batch reactive crystallisation models, and the solutions were validated against experimental data that we obtained.In summary, the experimental data provide an improved understanding of MAPreaction and crystallisation mechanisms. The adaptability of the WFD method has beendemonstrated validating the two crystallisation systems, and this should help extendthe application of wavelet-based solutions beyond crystallisation processes and intomore diverse areas of chemical engineering.

dc.publisherCurtin University
dc.subjectsemi-batch reactive crystallisation
dc.subjectmono-ammonium phosphate (MAP)
dc.subjectreactive crystallisation
dc.subjectbatch cooling crystallisation
dc.subjectpopulation balance equations
dc.subjectfinite difference method
dc.subjectcrystal nucleation
dc.subjectwavelet method
dc.titleExperimental kinetics studies and wavelet-based modelling of a reactive crystallisation system
curtin.departmentDepartment of Chemical Engineering
curtin.accessStatusFulltext not available

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