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Theoretical simulation approach of aspen plus for CO2

absorption Column using in NaOH.

Gas absorption is an operation in which a gas mixture is contacted with

a liquid for the purposes of preferentially dissolving one or more
components of the gas and to provide a solution of them in the liquid.
The inert gas in the gas mixture is called “carrier gas”. The liquid enters
the column from top and the mixture of carbon dioxide and air enters
from the bottom of the column. The NaOH is passed in excess of the
theoretical requirement in the column.

2NaOH + CO2 = Na2CO3 + H2O

In the absorption of carbon dioxide by caustic soda, the carbon dioxide

reacts directly with the caustic soda. An advantage of absorption plus
reaction is the increase in the mass-transfer coefficient. This may be due
to a greater effective interfacial area. The process hydrodynamics can
also be directly involved via correlations for the hold-up, pressure drop,
and mass transfer coefficients, etc. The absorption of carbon dioxide into
sodium hydroxide is accompanied by chemical reaction to form sodium
carbonate as product. This process is known as chemisorption. It is used
in the extraction of carbon dioxide from refinery gases and the product
is usually not striped since it has some economic value.
The general schematic diagram of gas absorption column is shown
Motivation and Problem Statement
Carbon dioxide (CO2) is a gas essential for life—animals exhale it, plants
sequester it. It exists in Earth's atmosphere in comparably small
concentrations, but is vital for sustaining life. CO2 is also known as a
greenhouse gas (GHG)—a gas that absorbs and emits thermal radiation,
creating the 'greenhouse effect'. Along with other greenhouse gases,
such as nitrous oxide and methane, CO2 is important in sustaining a
habitable temperature for the planet. Capture, transport and storage of
CO2 is an important part of the solution to reduce greenhouse gas
emissions. Flue gases from fossil fuel combustion contains CO2 that
should be removed for greenhouse gas control, and SO2 (sulphur
dioxide), that must be controlled to very low levels. Also for these
applications, chemical absorption is the most common purification
The CO2 absorption process should be studied more carefully so as to
provide more information to engineers to upgrade or enhance the
efficiency of the various Equipments required. This is where the dynamic
modelling and simulation of CO2 absorption process comes in useful.
Dynamic models allow us to understand the behavior of the dynamic
system of study besides resolving industrial problems or processes that
are of immediate and contemporary interest. A proper dynamic
simulation of CO2 absorption process can provide the people working
with this system a wider knowledge about its behavior besides serving
as a demonstration during trainings for new engineers in the industry.
Therefore, it is necessary to have an accurate dynamic modeling of a CO2
absorption process in order to have full control over the unit after it is
Research objective
The objectives of this research are:
i) To develop a model of CO2 absorption process.
ii) To study the effect of different operating conditions of CO2 absorption
process toward the yield and composition of CO2 in liquid NaoH by
solving model equations.
Scope of Study
The scopes of this research have been identified in order to achieve the
research objectives. The scopes are:
i) To develop a model of CO2 absorption process based on the
component and overall material balance, and equilibrium relationships
by building up a mathematical model for the CO2 absorption process.
ii) To validate the model by comparing the model results and the data
obtained from previous researches done by other researchers.
Mathematical Model for CDU
Mathematical model is an abstract model that uses mathematical
languages to describe the behavior of a system. Mathematical modeling
can be used in many cases, for example, to develop scientific
understanding through the quantitative expression of current
knowledge of a system, to test the effect of changes in a system, and to
aid decision making.
The model equations for an ordinary equilibrium stage of a simple gas
absorption column, namely mass balance, equilibrium relations, need to
be solved first as mathematical modeling is an important part of
economic design. These are the fundamental material and energy
balance equations which can facilitate numerical stability and ease of
convergence. For dynamic modeling, the ordinary differential equations
(ODE) and algebraic equations (AE) will need to be solved too, as it they
are important to show changes within the process with time. Theoretical
stage method is usually used for mathematical description of an
absorption process. The real number of stages might need to be
multiplied by column efficiency in order to find the number of theoretical
stages of an existing column. The mass balance for individual
components or pseudo-components and equilibrium equation can be
written for each theoretical stage. The sum of these equations creates
the mathematical model of a theoretical stage which in turn makes up
the mathematical model of an absorption column.
Thermodynamic Method
There are mainly four main types of Property Methods: Ideal, Equation
of State, Activity Coefficient, and Special Systems. In addition, an
advanced user can modify any of these available methods or create a
new property method on their own.
Thermodynamic Phase equilibrium can be determined in a number of
ways, including chemical potential, fugacity, activities, activity
coefficients, or the equilibrium distribution ratio. You will notice that the
Ideal methods rely on using ideal system equations to calculate the
equilibrium distribution ratio (K), which is then used to determine the
equilibrium conditions.
Available Thermodynamic Property Methods in Aspen Simulation
 Most Common EOS Property Methods

 Common Activity Coefficient Property Methods