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ERT 313

BIOSEPARATION ENGINEERING

ADSORPTION
Prepared by:
Miss Hairul Nazirah Abdul Halim
Adsorption Absorption !
Absorption a fluid phase is transferred from one medium to
another

Adsorption certain components of a fluid (liquid or gas) phase
are transferred to and held at the surface of a solid (e.g. small
particles binding to a carbon bed to improve water quality)

Adsorbent the adsorbing phase (carbon, zeolite)

Adsorbate the material adsorbed at the surface of adsorbent

Application of Adsorption
Used in many industrial processes:
dehumidification
odour/colour/taste removal
gas pollutant removal (H
2
S)
water softening and deionisation
hydrocarbon fractionation
pharmaceutical purification


Nature of Adsorbent
Porous material - Large surface area per unit mass
- internal surface area greater than the external
surface area
- often 500 to 1000 m
2
/g.
Separation occurs because differences in molecular weight,
shape or polarity of components
Rate of mass transfer is dependent on the void fraction within
the pores
Granular (50m - 12 mm diameter)
Suitable for packed bed use
Activated carbon, silica gel, alumina, zeolites

Zeolite structure
Silica structure
Types of Adsorption
Ion exchange
Electrostatic attachment of ionic species to site of the opposite
charge at the surface of an adsorbent

Physical Adsorption
result of intermolecular forces causing preferential binding of
certain substances to certain adsorbents
Van der Waal forces, London dispersion force
reversible by addition of heat (via steam, hot inert gas, oven)
Attachment to the outer layer of adsorbent material

Chemisorption
result of chemical interaction
Irreversible, mainly found in catalysis
change in the chemical form of adsorbate
Adsorption Equipment
Fixed-bed adsorbers
Gas-drying equipment
Pressure-swing adsorption
Adsorption Isotherm
Adsorption isotherm equilibrium relationship between the
concentration in the fluid phase and the concentration in the
adsorbent particles.

Types of Isotherms
Number of types of isotherm
1. Linear - adsorption amount is proportional to the
concentration in the fluid
2. Langmuir (favourable)
W=W
max
[Kc/(1+Kc)]
Where:
W = adsorbate loading
c = the concentration in the fluid
K = the adsorption constant
3. Freundlich (strongly favourable) high adsorption at low
fluid concentration
W=bc
m
where b and m are constant
4. Irreversible independent of concentration

FIGURE 25.3 Adsorption isotherms for water in air at 20 to 50
0
C.
Principles of Adsorption
Concentration profile in fixed beds











Figure 25.6(a)
Breakthrough Curves
t
b
time when the concentration reaches break point
Break point relative concentration c/c
o
of 0.05 or 0.10
Adsorption beyond the break point would rise rapidly to about
0.50
Then, slowly approach 1.0
t* is the ideal adsorption time for a vertical breakthrough curve
t* is also the time when c/c
o
reaches 0.50
Amount of adsorbed is proportional to the rectangular area to the
left of the dashed line at t*
Solute feed rate (F
A
) = superficial velocity (u
o
) X concentration (c
o
)







Where:
W
o
= initial adsorbate loading
W
sat
= adsorbate at equilibrium with the fluid
L = length of the bed

b
= bulk density of the bed

Length of Unused Bed (LUB)
Determine the total solute adsorbed up to the break point by
integration



The break point time, t
b
is calculated from the ideal time and
the fraction of bed utilized:
dt
c
c
t
o
}
|
|
.
|

\
|

0
1
Tutorial 3
Example 25.2 (McCabe)

The adsorption of n-butanol from air was studied in a small fixed bed
(10.16 cm diameter) with 300 and 600 g carbon, corresponding
to bed lengths of 8 and 16 cm.

a) From the following data for effluent concentration, estimate the
saturation capacity of the carbon and the fraction of the bed used
at c/c
o
= 0.05
b) Predict the break point time for a bed length of 32 cm

Data for n-butanol on Columbia JXC 4/6 carbon are as follows:

Solution
The total solute adsorbed is the area above the graph multiplied by
F
A
. For the 8-cm bed, the area is





How to solve this integration???
t c/c
o
f (X) =1-c/c
o
0 0 1
2 0.027 0.973
4 0.29 0.71
6 0.78 0.22
8 0.99 0.01
( )
4
4 2 4
3
) (
0 4
4 3 2 1 0
4
0
X X
h
f f f f f
h
dX X f
X
X

=
+ + + + =
}
Use numerical integration (5-point quadrature formula)




From the graph plotted, the following data is obtained:
( ) h 80 . 4 01 . 0 ) 22 . 0 ( 4 ) 71 . 0 ( 2 ) 973 . 0 ( 4 1
3
2
1
2
4
0 8
4
0
0
= + + + + =
|
|
.
|

\
|

=
}
dt
c
c
h
t
t
The mass of carbon per unit cross-sectional area of bed is
= bed length x density of carbon
= 8 cm x 0.461g/cm
3
= 3.69 g/cm
2











How to solve this integration???


t c/c
o
f (X) =1-c/c
o
0 0 1
2.4 0.05 0.95
| |
0 1
1 0
) ( ) (
2
) (
1
0
X X h
X f X f
h
dX X f
X
X
=
+ =
}
Use numerical integration (Trapezoidal rule)




From the graph plotted, the following data is obtained:
( ) h 34 . 2 95 . 0 1
2
4 . 2
1
4 . 2 0 4 . 2
1
0
0
= + =
|
|
.
|

\
|

= =
}
dt
c
c
h
t
t