What’s “new”?

Distillation is a one of the oldest and most widely practised industrial practices known to man. Could there really be something new in such a well-worn field of study?

“Newness” has a particular meaning to patent attorneys, and in that sense pass-through distillation is not new.  But there is also a subjective sense of the word, as in “That’s new to me!” For most of us, this category includes many great inventions that failed the test of commercialization and vanished into obscurity. In this sense of the word, pass-through distillation may be new to you.

Once you have learned what it is and how it works,  you will want to know if it is relevant to you. You might ask: Can it be applied to my process? What are its operating costs and capital costs as compared to conventional technology? If it enables me to reduce energy consumption,s will I get carbon credits? Are there any case studies in my industry? Who is currently active in this field?

I am hoping to make this kind of multi-disciplinary information available on this site over time.

Notes on Part 4 (of PTD 101)


Part 4 contains the surprising truth that gives pass-through distillation its real energy saving potential. In a nutshell, gas absorption changes the state of the absorbed gas into a liquid; consequently the latent heat of evaporation must be rejected (as in a condenser). But this heat may be at a higher temperature than the contents of the evaporator.  An appropriate heat exchange system then can supply the evaporator’s heat needs from the absorber.  If this is done, we get the first boil-up “for free”.

We learned in part 3 that the second boil-up can use multiple effects to reduce energy consumption by 50%.  So the combined energy use of the first and second boil-ups is 0 + 50% = 50% of conventional distillation.

I have found no instructive videos on Youtube to aid here,