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Chemical Engineering Projects at the University of Edinburgh Lev Sarkisov (Lecturer and Motivational Speaker) March 26 2012 IChemE EdSIG Design Teaching.

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Presentation on theme: "Chemical Engineering Projects at the University of Edinburgh Lev Sarkisov (Lecturer and Motivational Speaker) March 26 2012 IChemE EdSIG Design Teaching."— Presentation transcript:

1 Chemical Engineering Projects at the University of Edinburgh Lev Sarkisov (Lecturer and Motivational Speaker) March IChemE EdSIG Design Teaching Workshop

2 Design Projects: Past/Present/Future - Well established process well known routes - Adjusting the process for the parameters of remit - (Very) detailed design of individual units - Conceptual design - Many options/many solutions - Simpler (short cut) design of units - (Very) detailed design of individual units -Lack of data/lack of methods /lack of expertise

3 Design Projects: Learning outcomes 1. Work on complex, open-ended technical problems. 2. Communicate effectively within and outwith the group. 3. Develop solutions as part of a team, as well as undertaking individual technical effort in achieving them. 4. Solve open-ended design problems under appropriate constraints, including technical requirements, environmental and sustainability limitations, health, safety and risk assessment issues and appreciation of public perception and concerns. 5. Make decisions on the basis of incomplete and contradictory information; work with multiple design objectives; and justify the choices and decisions taken. 6. Write concise, informative reports on the design work undertaken. 7. Present and sell their team work to a panel of academic and industrial experts. 8. Develop time-management skills due to report and presentation deadlines being imposed.

4 Design Projects: Structure - The course starts in September. First 9 weeks comprise lectures and design exercises (cumene reactor design; heat exchanger design) -The teams are formed in November. Each team is led by two academics who formulate the remit of the project. The teams assemble weekly to discuss the project and assign tasks. - Design process continues until the end of the March, followed by design presentation and submission of volume 1 (for the whole group) and individual volumes 2 (more detailed design of specific units)

5 Design Projects: examples About 70 students; 6 teams; 12 academics - Projects: 1. Co-generation from coal 2. Design of integrated life support systems for Mars space station 3. Production of Ethyl-Tert-Butyl-Ether (ETBE) 4. Nitric acid process 5. Propylene Oxide Plant 6. Acetic Acid plant - Presentations: 1 hr each team; industrial representatives; followed by 0.5 h questions and answers.

6 Design Projects: typical remits Nitric acid (HNO3) is a highly corrosive and toxic strong acid, colorless when pure. The main use of nitric acid is for the production of fertilizers.It is proposed to construct a plant that will deliver 150 tonnes per day of 60%(wt) nitric acid. This capacity is based on 8000 hours of operation per year, i.e. 330 days. It is envisaged that this nitric acid production facility will be accommodated within a larger chemical complex to be located in Scotland. Other plants on the same site include an ammonia plant and an ammonium nitrate plant. Approximately 70% of the product acid will be consumed in situ for the production of crystalline ammonium nitrate. The remaining acid will be available to export within UK and Europe. Two different process routes should be investigated. It is imperative that the plant meets latest environmental emission targets. Therefore NOx removal before release of waste gas is required. Also, CO2 release is to be minimised by maximising energy recovery in the plant.

7 Design Projects: typical remits Your consulting company has been hired by the Mars Exploration Consortium, represented by Drs. Sarkisov and Valluri. The objective of the consortium is to build a space station on Mars, capable of a continuous support of a 10 member crew. It has been planned that a re-supply mission should return to Mars every 18 months, with the main resources re-supplied being water, oxygen and food. With the current cost of the re-supplement estimated at £1M/kg, there is a clear need for intensive onsite recycling of the resources, including water, air and waste. Your company has been hired to develop an integrated recycling solution, with an objective to minimize the weight of the re-supplement cargo. Other technologies that should be explored along with the recycling, include collection and purification of water on Mars and local production of food stock (high protein vegetables etc). The primary source of energy for the Martial station will be provided by a nuclear reactor with up to 50 MWe capacity.

8 Role of students and advisers Students: work independently; formulate, prioritize and allocate tasks; use diverse and incomplete sources of information, make and justify assumptions and simplifications. Maintain a central depository (wiki) for all information acquired, presentations and meeting minutes. Advisers: the role is truly advisory. Help students appreciate weaknesses and strengths of their analysis; ask right questions at a right time; some help with data mining.

9 Role of industry - Formulate remit and advice on the projects (for example KA production, Invista) - Presentation feedback - Invited lectures: safety, control - Overall, help us formulate the skills and knowledge required by the industry; influence the curriculum.

10 Project evolution in time (never works!)

11 Marking and consistency - Feedback and marking proformas and categories - Each report is marked by two independent academics - Plus a cross volume comparison by an expert in the field (thermodynamics, kinetics, control) -Well defined marking criteria available to staff and students (transparency!) - Proformas with feedback - > to students

12 Marking criteria: Example Critical review of design Review illegible or so poorly structured as to add nothing to the rest of the report. A simple recap of what the student has done in the design project, without criticism, analysis or introspection. Some awareness of the weaknesses of the design as produced with vague ideas as to how things could be improved. A reasonable review of the design methods and the functional and operational weaknesses of the design produced, but without analysis of data sensitivity and implications of the design for the plant as a whole. Good coverage of the majority, but not all of the six sections listed in the column to the right. A properly structured review of everything the student has done in the course of the design project. Full consideration of: (1) the ability of the unit to do what is desired for the operation of the plant as a whole. (2) capability of coping with operation above or below the flowsheet range, debottlenecking, turndown. (3) what would happen in the case of partial or complete failure of upstream or downstream equipment. (4) methods of design used and their limitations. What would the student do if starting afresh? (5) sensitivity of the design to the data available. What extra data would be vital to improving the dependability of the design? (6) the working of the group, organisation, strengths and weaknesses of the group dynamics. (tough to get!)

13 Challenges: student perspective - Openendedness of the problems - Lack of data: most optimal design from the literature is not what can be designed - Short-cut vs rigorous methods

14 Challenges: staff perspective - Lack of data - Lack of expertise - Short-cut vs rigorous methods - Internet solutions trap - Consistency

15 But there is an end!

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