A Sequential Synthesis Framework for Heat-Integrated Complex Reactor Network

  • Haotian Ye
  • Xiong Zou
  • Xiangqin Li
  • Hongguang Dong


Reactor network synthesis plays an important role in finding green and sustainable chemical production flowsheet. Previous researches were usually optimized under specific reaction path, leading to a suboptimal network structure, and less attention has been paid to heat integration between reactors. However, simultaneously optimizing these two problems with multiple reaction paths involved inevitably leads to a combinational explosion of computational complexities. Therefore, a hierarchical optimization approach for the heat-integrated complex reactor network is proposed in this work. In the first step, the reaction paths tree and its relationship with reactor networks are discussed by embedding different reaction pathways into reactor network superstructure. The corresponding mathematical model is formulated as a mixed integer non-linear programming (MINLP) problem and a number of alternative reactor networks with specified catalysts arrangement are obtained by the interactive iteration solving strategy. In the second step, heat integration between reactors is achieved by the synthesis of heat exchanger network, which leads to a significant decrease in the total energy consumption. Ultimately, a case study for p-xylene production is introduced to demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed method.
How to Cite
Ye H., Zou X., Li X., Dong H., 2017, A Sequential Synthesis Framework for Heat-Integrated Complex Reactor Network , Chemical Engineering Transactions, 61, 1003-1008.