Effect of Viscosity on Liquid Film Resistance to Mass Transfer in a Packed Column

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Liquid-phase mass transfer coefficients are reported for the countercurrent absorption of carbon dioxide into pure water and aqueous glycerol mixtures at 25 °C covering a viscosity range of 0.9 to 26 cP in a 10-cm glass column packed randomly with 1-cm glass Raschig rings to a depth of 50 cm. When plotting kLa/DSc0.5 vs. L/μ, a sharp transition was observed for each glycerol-water mixture, accompanied by a sharp increase in pressure drop. These changes of slope could be predicted as a function of the minimum wetting rate. Below these transition points, mass transfer coefficients for the systems exhibiting a viscosity up to 10 cP could be correlated by an equation of the form: kLa/D = f[Re, Sc, Ga, (1 - cos θ)]. Above these transition points, all the experimental data in the same viscosity range could be correlated by an equation of the form: kLa/D = f[Re′, Sc, Ga]. © 1980, American Chemical Society. All rights reserved.

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Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Process Design and Development