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CHAPTER 2

PROCESS SYNTHESIS AND FLOW SHEETING

2.1 PROCESS FLOW DIAGRAM

FIGURE 1: PROCESS FLOW DIAGRAM OF PRODUCTION OF CUMENE


2.2 OVERALL PROCESS
The reactants are fed from their respective storage tanks. After being pumped up to the required
pressure (dictated by catalyst operating conditions), the reactants are mixed, vaporized, and
heated to the temperature required by the catalyst in the fired heater. The shell-and-tube reactor
converts the reactants to desired and undesired products as per the above reactions. The
exothermic heat of reaction is removed by producing high pressure steam from boiler feed
water in the reactor. The stream leaving the reactor enters the flash unit, which consists of a
heat exchanger and a flash drum. The flash unit is used to separate the propane impurities,
which are used as fuel for a furnace in another on-site process. The liquid stream from the flash
drum is sent to the first distillation column, which separates benzene for recycle. The second
distillation column purifies cumene from the p-diisopropyl benzene impurity. Currently, the
waste p-DIPB is used as fuel for a furnace. The pressure of both distillation columns is
determined by the pressure in the flash drum.
2.3 SUMMARY OF FUNCTION OF EQUIPMENTS
Tanks (not shown on flowsheet)

 TK-101 storage tank for benzene, feeding Stream 1


 TK-102 storage tank for propylene feeding Stream 2

Pumps

 P-101 centrifugal
 P-102 centrifugal
 P-103 centrifugal
 P-104 centrifugal
 P-105 centrifugal

Heat Exchangers

 E-101 condenser for flash unit, process stream in shell


 E-103 total condenser for T-101, condensing fluid in shell
 E-102 reboiler for T-801
 E-105 total condenser for T-802, condensing fluid in shell
 E-104 reboiler for T-802

Fired Heater

 H-101

Reactor

 R-101 shell and tube packed bed with phosphoric acid catalyst supported on boiler feed
water in shell to produce high pressure steam

Distillation Columns

 T-101 removes benzene impurity overhead for recycle medium pressure steam used in
reboiler cooling water used in condenser, returned at maximum allowable temperature
 T-102 removes cumene product overhead high pressure steam used in reboiler cooling
water used in condenser, returned at maximum allowable temperature

Vessels

 V-101 benzene feed drum


 V-802 flash drum, the flash unit is used to separate the propane impurities.
 V-803 T-801 reflux drum