Simulation and Techno-Economic Evaluation of Large Scale 2.5-Dimethylfuran Production From Fructose
Rodrigues, F.
Guirardello, R.
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Rodrigues F., Guirardello R., 2014, Simulation and Techno-Economic Evaluation of Large Scale 2.5-Dimethylfuran Production From Fructose, Chemical Engineering Transactions, 37, 475-480.
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Conceptual process synthesis (CPS) is an important issue in chemical processing industries. This paper is based on a schematic diagram of 2.5 dimethylfuran (DMF) production from fructose [ Y. R. Leshkov, C. J. Barrett, Z. L. Liu, J. A. Dumesic. Production of dimethylfuran for liquid fuels from biomass-derived carbohydrates. Nature (2007), doi:10.1038/nature05923]. It assessed the general steps of the life cycle of an 2.5-dimethylfuran (DMF) industrial production project. Chemical route synthesis, process development (thermodynamic modeling) and process engineering (defining basic equipment for economic evaluation) were investigated. The process flow diagram (PFD) was made in the commercial process simulator UNISimTM. A literature review on the process was carried out in order to determine which thermodynamic model would be suitable to represent the phase equilibrium. In the system studied (fructose, 1-butanol, sodium chloride, water, chloride acid, hydroxymethylfurfural, 2,5 dimethylfuran) the presence of the sodium chloride affects the phase equilibrium. In this work, consider the salt as simple molecule, rather than distributed charged ions in the solution. This allows the use of the UNIQUAC model. The binary interaction parameters of the model were estimated from experimental data in literature of liquid-liquid equilibrium. The process for DMF production was simulated with these parameters. The process separates water from the 1-butanol and water, 1-butanol and DMF. The material and energy balances were performed by UNISimTM software. Economic evaluation showed that a suitable operational condition could work with 174 mil t/y of fructose and could produce 155 mil t/y of DMF. The cost of DMF was 1.95 U$$/kg. The DMF value and the thermal energy consumption are key issues for a profitable operation of the plant. This analysis suggests that DMF production from fructose deserves serious consideration by investors.
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