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INTRODUCTION

Liquid-liquid extraction is one of the experiments that consists of two parts.


Firstly, to determine the distribution coefficient for the system organic solventPropionic acid-water and to show it dependence on concentration and the second is
to demonstrate how a mass balance is performed on the extraction column, and to
measure the mass transfer coefficient with the aqueous phase as the continuous
medium.
Propionic acid is an important commercial product and extracting it out of
aqueous solution is a growing requirement in fermentation based industries and
recovery from waste streams. It had been used in the liquid-liquid extraction (LLE)
experiment.
There are a few characteristics that are needed in choosing the solvent for
LLE process. First and foremost, solvent would preferably completely dissolve both
compounds in the mixture. Second, the solvent selected must be immiscible with the
first solvent. Third, second solvent should preferentially dissolve only one component
of the original mixture.
In liquid-liquid extraction, mixture is dissolved or suspended in the first solvent
and then this solution is introduced to the second solvent. By shaking the solvent
together in an apparatus called a separator funnel, one component of the mixture will
be transferred into the second solvent. This would leave the other component in the
first solvent. Final separation of two solvents is accomplished using separator funnel,
followed by evaporation of solvents, produces the separated components.
In liquid-liquid extraction, as in gas absorption and distillation, two phases
must be brought into contact to permit transfer of material and then be separated.
Extraction equipment may be operated batch wise or continuous. The extract is the
layer of solvent plus extracted solute and the raffinate is the layer from which solute
has been removed. The extract may be lighter or heavier than the raffinate, and so
the extract may be shown coming from top of the equipment in some cases and from
the bottom in others. The operation may of course be repeated if more than one

contact is required, but when the quantities involved are large and several contacts
are needed, continuous flow becomes economical.
If the components of the original solution distribute differently between the two
liquids, separation will result. The component balances will be essentially identical to
those for leaching, but there are two major differences which are the carrier phase is
a liquid, not a solid, so the physical separation technique will change and two distinct
phases develop, so the simplicity of uniform solution is lost.
Liquid-liquid extraction (LLE) is generally used in chemical, petroleum refinery,
pharmaceutical, mining, and the nuclear industries to separate chemicals in liquid
mixtures by treating the mixture with an immiscible solvent in which these
components are preferentially soluble. In some cases purification of a liquid may be
the function of the process, in others the extraction of a dissolved component for
subsequent

processes

may

be

the

important

aspect.

An example is the preparation of the pure organic liquids from products of the
oil industry. Liquid-liquid extractions may also be used as energy saving processes
by, for example, eliminating distillation stages. It is possible, of course that the
substance of interest may be heat-sensitive anyway and that distillation is
accordingly an unacceptable process.

AIMS
Based on the experiment had been conducted, there are two experiment with
different objectives that need to be obtained. In experiment Part A, the objectives are
to determine the distribution coefficient for the system organic solvent propanoic
acid water as well as to its dependence on concentration. Meanwhile, the
objectives of experiment Part B are to demonstrate how a mass balance is performed
on the extraction column, and to measure the mass transfer coefficient with the
aqueous phase as the continuous medium.

THEORY
In dilute solution at equilibrium, the concentrations of the solute in the two
phases are called the distribution coefficient or distribution constant K, as describe in
the followings:
K = Y/X ..............(1)
Where Y is the concentration of the solute in the extract phase whereas X is the
concentration of the solute in raffinate phase. The distribution coefficient can also be
expressed as the weight fraction of the solute in the two phases in equilibrium
contact:
K = y/x ................(2)
Where y is the weight fraction of the solute in the extract and x is the weight fraction
of the solute in the raffinate.
The rate at which a soluble component is transferred from one solvent to
another will be dependent, among other things, on the area of the interface between
the two immiscible liquids. Therefore it is very advantageous for this interface to be
formed by droplets and films, the situation being analogous to that existing in packed
distillation columns.

The theory for the system Trichloroethylene-Propionic acid-Water is as follows:


Let
Vw

: Water flow rate, lt/s

Vo

: Trichloroethylene flow rate, lt/s

: Propanoic acid concentration in the organic phase, kg/lt

: Propanoic acid concentration in the aqueous phase, kg/lt

Subscripts

: 1 : Top of column

: 2 : Bottom of column
Mass Balance :
Propanoic acid extracted from the organic phase (raffinate).
=Vo(X1X2) .................(3)
Propanoic acid extracted by the aqueous phase (extract)
=Vw(Y10) ..................(4)
Therefore theoretically,
Vo(X1X2) = Vw(Y10) ...................(5)

Mass transfer coefficient:

( Rate of acid transfer ) / (Volume of packing Meandriving force )


...............
MTC =

.......(6)

Where Log mean driving force : (X1-X2) / ln (X1/X2)


X1 : Driving force at the top of the column = (X2 - 0)
X2 : Driving force at the bottom of the column = (X1-X1*)
Where X1* and X2* are the concentrations in the organic phase which would
be in equilibrium with concentrations Y1 and Y2 ( = 0.0) in the aqueous phase,
respectively. The equilibrium values can be found using the distribution coefficient for
the chemicals used (Assume that Y=KX relation holds at equilibrium for a constant
K). Rate of acid transfer may be calculated using Equation (3) or (4) based on
raffinate or extract phases, respectively.