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An Investigation into the Micromixing Characteristics in a Spinning Disc Reactor

Salah Ramadan Al-hengari* and Kamelia V.K. Boodhoo

School of Chemical Engineering and Advanced Materials, Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 7RU, UK

1. Summary

This paper concerns the characterisation of the micromixing process within a thin film flowing on the surface of a spinning disc reactor (SDR). A parallel-competitive reaction test scheme will be used to quantify micromixing in terms of the segregation index (Xs), micromixedness ratio (α) and micromixing time (tm). The effects of various parameters will be investigated including disc rotation rates, feed flowrates, disc surface configurations (smooth, grooved, etc.), acid varying concentrations, liquid feed viscosities, and wetting characteristics of liquid feeds etc. The SDR mixing data will be benchmarked against experimental data for a conventional stirred tank reactor (STR) in order to evaluate the micromixing efficiency in the SDR relative to the STR.

Key words: Process intensification; Micromixing characterisation; segregation index; Spinning disc reactor

2. Extended abstract

2.1. Reaction System

The system considered in this work consists of three parallel-competitive reversible reaction used to quantify micromixing in terms of the segregation index. This scheme is known as the iodide / iodate system and it consists of the following reactions:

H BO −(aq ) + H +(aq ) ⇔ H BO

2 3 3 3(aq )

5I−(aq) +IO3(aq) +6H−(aq) ⇔3I2(aq) +3H2o(aq) I +I− ⇔I−(aq)

The second reaction (2) which is a redox reaction and is called Dushman reaction is fast, in the same range of the micromixing process, but much slower than the neutralisation reaction (1). The iodine formed reacts further with iodide ions I- to yield I-3 according to the quasi-instantaneous equilibrium (Reaction 3). The degree of micromixing has a direct influence on Reaction 2 and subsequently on Reaction 3.

The measurement of I-3 can therefore provide a good indication of the level of

micromixing achieved in any given system. The lower the I-3 concentration, the lower is the segregation index, Xs, which means better micromixing. It is to be noted that


Quasi-instantaneous (1) Veryfast (2)

Equilibrium (3)

* Corresponding author (E-mail:

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