A generic approach was applied to develop a comprehensive Trickle Bed Reactor (TBR) model.The model was based on exact definition of the required equations and development of aprogram code (in gPROMS ModelBuilder environment) to solve them simultaneously. Themodel consisted of dynamic mass and energy balances in three phases of heterogeneouslycatalyzed reaction system. The fluid dynamics was expressed in simple terms (dispersionmodel, semi-empiric expressions for pressure drop and liquid hold-up) to guarantee a fastrunning program code. Even though a large number of articles have been published on thetopic, only few of these studies penetrate into all details of the system. Most of them focus onthe description of few selected physical phenomena. Including most or even all phenomenain a single model is seldom done. Most often, the published reactor models consider twodimensions only, because of mathematical simplicity (i.e. TBR axial and radial coordinatesor only TBR axial coordinate and particle radius). Here an attempt was made to present ageneric simulation model for tubular reactors working in non-isothermal three-phase sys-tems (gas–liquid–solid) where three dimensions are simultaneously taken into account (TBRaxial and radial coordinate and particle radius). All the model development and calculationswere made by using the powerful software, which allows solving a large set of partial dif-ferential equations and algebraic equations. An example case study of hydrogenation ofarabinose to arabitol on a ruthenium catalyst was included.
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