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Pinch Analysis & Process Integration

Using the SEAC Pinch Analysis Tool

May 2010

The SEAC Pinch analysis tool has been developed to understand and improve the thermal energy demands of existing and new processes.
Based upon the laws of thermodynamics and proven methodology
Highlights the scope for reduced utility energy demands and as a consequence CO2 emissions i.e. Shows what a process is capable of achieving Simple and intuitive user interface no in-depth knowledge of engineering or process thermodynamics required. Process Integration allows a step-change in energy consumption to be made over and above traditional techniques. Using this methodology total energy savings of between 5 and 30% have been identified.

Typical Improvement Process

Energy Consumption Consistent units

5.0 4.0 3.0 2.0
Minimum New Design by traditional methods

Modified flow sheet based on systematic techniques for thermal integration

1.0 0.0
Successive plants
Last Process Existing Process New Design

Process Synthesis
Site Heat & Power Systems

Heat Exchanger Network Separation


Chemical Synthesis

Process Development

Heat Recovery
Utility Heating/Cooling, pumps & compressors

Process Synthesis
The core of the process is the reaction / mixing / formulation step Product composition and feed requirements dictate the separation tasks (including recycles) Then and only then can the design of various heating and cooling duties for the streams be defined. The design of the reactor / mixer is dictated by yield and conversion considerations. The separation stage allow recycle of un-reacted feed etc. The operating conditions of these units are taken as being accepted. The design problem then becomes one of getting the optimum performance out of the system of heat exchangers, heaters and coolers.

Typically, this is an area where little thought or effort has taken place

Application to existing processes can limit the recovery potential due to other limiting factors such as cost, layout, fluid rheology etc. Tighter designs which reduce the temperature driving force use less utilities and the overall system heat load decreases. However, with less driving force the area required to meet the duty increases Higher capital costs (,$.) But, because of the reduced heat load the provision of utility costs decreases. This is an important trade off

Pinch Analysis Tool

The Pinch Analysis Tool aids the identification of the heat recovery potential and hence energy savings of both new and existing processes. It does NOT specify how this is done but highlights the scope for savings or opportunities

Heat Recovery = 450 kW

Pinch Terminology
Any flow which requires to be heated or cooled but does not change in composition is defined as a Stream. Streams which are being heated are known as COLD streams Conversely, streams which are being cooled are known as HOT streams. Reaction processes are NOT streams as generally there is a change in composition. Similarly, make ups which are not heated or cooled are also not defined as streams.

Adding Data - Input

Each Stream in the process under investigation (up to max. 50 streams) is added via the Input worksheet. Using available information add the temperature and flow information (various units sets available to match the data source) Heat Capacity Flow Rate is the most commonly used method in process integration to define heat flows (kW/K)

CP = Heat Capacity Flowrate (kW/K) = mass flow W (kg/s) x Specific Heat Cp (kJ/kgK) Supply Temperature (ST)= Temperature the stream is being heated or cooled from. (C) Target Temperature (TT= Temperature the stream is being heated or cooled to. (C) Based upon the information provided the tool calculates the following: Stream Heat Load (kW) Stream type (Hot or Cold) Shifted Supply & Target Temperatures*

* Further details of shifted temperatures are given further into this presentation


Pinch Analysis Tool

The tool contains two methods for calculating the Pinch:

Composite Curves
Problem Table Analysis

Both methods should deliver the same answer and so in effect are a cross check that the analysis is correct


Pinch Analysis Tool Composite Curves

For feasible heat exchange between streams, the HOT stream must at all points be hotter than the COLD stream.

The overlap between the composite curves represents the maximum amount of heat recovery possible within the process under investigation.
The overshoot at the bottom of the HOT composite represents the minimum amount of external cooling required. The overshoot at the top of the COLD composite represents the minimum amount of external heating required. DTmin is the controlling design parameter. This is the approach temperature. As previously discussed, close approach temperatures reduce the driving force and would therefore increase the area required to accomplish heat transfer. In general, DTmin occurs at only one point of closest approach This is the PINCH.

Composite Curves Temperature Intervals

To handle multiple streams, the heat loads or heat capacity flow rates of all streams existing over any given temperature range are added together. Thus a single composite of all HOT streams and a single composite of all COLD streams can be produced.

In figure (a) three HOT streams are plotted separately, with their supply and target temperatures defining a series of interval temperatures T1 T5

Between T1 T2 only stream B exists so the heat available is given by CPB (T1 T2)
Between T2 T3 all three streams exist and so the heat available in this interval is given by (CPA + CPB + CPC)(T2 T3) 13

Pinch Analysis Tool Composite Curves


Problem Table Analysis

Using the same Four streams that were used to develop the Composite curves these will now be analysed by the Problem Table Analysis method. Again, the information required can be input based upon the information available (in this case Heat Capacity Flowrate is used), Supply Temp (TS C) & Target Temp (TT C) The tool calculates the Shifted temperatures.


Shifted Temperatures
In the construction of the composite curves it was described how the enthalpy balance intervals were set up based on stream supply and target temperatures. The same can be done for hot and cold streams together, to allow for maximum possible heat exchange within each temperature interval. To ensure this occurs it is required that HOT and COLD streams are at least DTmin apart. This is done by using Shifted temperatures, which are set at DTmin (5C in this example) below HOT stream temperatures and DTmin above COLD stream temperatures.


Problem Table Analysis

In this diagram the four streams are represented on a vertical temperature scale with interval boundaries superimposed:

In interval 2, between shifted temperatures 145C and 140C, streams 2 & 4 (HOT streams) run from 150C to 145C, and stream 3 (the COLD stream) from 135C to 140C. Setting up the intervals in this way ensures guarantees that full heat interchange within any interval is possible.

Each interval will either have a net surplus or net deficit of heat as dictated by enthalpy balance. NEVER BOTH! 17

Problem Table Analysis

Knowing the stream population as shown in the previous slide, enthalpy balances can easily be calculated for each interval by:

DHi = (Si Si+1) (SCPH SCPC)i

The tool calculates this enthalpy balance and indicates whether within each interval is in heat surplus or heat deficit. It would therefore be possible to produce a feasible network design based on the assumption that all surplus intervals rejected heat to cold utility (cooling water) and all deficit intervals took heat from hot utility (steam) This would not be sensible because it would involve accepting and rejecting 18 heat at inappropriate temperatures.

Problem Table Analysis

Any interval (Si) in the table displayed in the previous slide is hot enough to supply any duty in interval Si +1 Using intervals 1 and 2 as an example, instead of sending the 60kW of surplus heat from interval 1 to cold utility it can be sent down to interval 2.

It is therefore possible to set up a heat cascade. The tool develops the cascades.

Infeasible & Feasible Heat Cascades

Assuming that no heat from hot utility is supplied to the hottest interval (1) the surplus from interval 1 (60kW) can be cascaded into interval 2. There it joins the 2.5kW surplus from interval 2 (making 62.5kW) to be cascaded into interval 3. Interval 3 has a 82.5kW deficit which leaves a deficit of 20kW after accepting the heat from interval 2. Clearly, passing on a deficit or negative flow of 20kW between intervals 3 & 4 is thermodynamically infeasible. (Heat cannot be passed from a cold stream to a hot stream). This is an Infeasible cascade.

Infeasible & Feasible Heat Cascades

To make the cascade feasible 20kW of heat must be added from hot utility and cascaded right through the system as shown in the diagram. By enthalpy balance this means that all flows are increased by 20kW The net result of this example is that the minimum utilities requirements have been predicted (i.e. 20kW Hot and 60kW cold) The position of the PINCH has also been located. This is at the interval boundary with a shifted temperature of 85C (i.e. Hot streams at 90C and cold streams at 80C) where the heat flow is zero.

Comparison of results
The answers developed by both methods are the same:


Both methods which are included in the tool calculate the heat recovery potential and the resulting minimum heating and cooling requirements of the process being studied. The tool does NOT tell you how the heat recovery should be done i.e. Heat Exchanger Network design only the scope for improvement The tool can accommodate up to 50 streams. The example used in this presentation is the example used in the tool. A simplified version is given in the worksheet examples. The tool can be used to assess New or existing designs. Provides SEAC with a unique methodology (no other groups looking at Pinch Analysis) to assist categories to meet the Compass challenge. The pilot work conducted with Aspentech indicated savings of between 5 & 30% of total site energy can be achieved by applying this methodology.