The Effect of Obstacle Types on the Behavior of Methanol Bubble in the Triglyceride within the Column Reactor by using CFD Simulation

Dyah Wulandani, Fajri Ilham, Shoji Hagiwara, Hiroshi Nabetani


The aim of research is to show the effect of obstacle design utilization on the behavior of methanol bubble in the triglyceride liquid within the column reactor. A superheated methanol gas was introduced from the bottom of reactor contained triglyceride liquid to produce biodiesel through non-catalytic trans-esterification reaction. The process occurs under atmospheric pressure and temperature of 290oC. The result of research is intended to find the best design of obstacle to be used in the column reactor in order to increase the reaction rate of biodiesel production. The volume of fraction model of computational fluid dynamics is used to describe the behavior of bubble which is represented by the parameters of gas holdup, residence time, contact surface area and behavior of bubble. The previous study showed that those parameters influenced the reaction rate of biodiesel production. The volume of fraction model of computational fluid dynamics simulation were verified by compared the model result with the experimental result by using bench scale column reactor of biodiesel production on previous work. Eight types of obstacle were simulated to
describe the bubble behavior of methanol in the triglyceride. The result showed that the utilization of obstacle which is constructed by single pivot and three of different perforate plates gives the highest gas holdup, contact surface area and residence time, respectively.

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