Sheridan College and Drystill Technologies are collaborating on a project to test pass-through distillation at lab scale, assisted by funding from NSERC.
- The project formally commenced on May 30, 2016 and will operate until the end of the year. Many important industrial separations will be tested using room temperature pass-through distillation, including:
- separation of ethanol from fermentation broth
- separation of essential oils from aqueous slurry
- removal of water from corn ethanol plant syrup
- separation of butanol from fermentation broth
The SAM comprises 20 heat pipes 28 cm in length by12mm in diameter, arranged vertically in a single column. It is capable of boiling 2.3 kg/hr of water. Drystill has built other SAMs in the past, but this one breaks new ground in that it includes an external stripping column between the evaporation and absorption chambers. Another new feature is mechanical distribution devices that permit even distribution of liquids over the heat pipes at extremely low flow rates.
The video below was taken on Aug 12, 2016 when the assembly of the apparatus was nearly complete and was being tested for leak tightness.