This paper presents an algebraic approach for identifying bottlenecks in continuous process systems where each process unit is characterized by fixed mass and energy balance relationships. In industrial applications, such a system is designed to produce a particular product portfolio. This is determined from the anticipated products market and is taken as a baseline state. A process plant is designed with the individual process units at the required size to meet the baseline portfolio, and typically additional margin for safety reason is considered. A simple approach to identify the bottlenecks is proposed and the product portfolio is changed by a given fraction relative to the baseline state. A bottleneck occurs when the available excess capacity of a process unit is insufficient to meet the incremental requirement. Two illustrative case studies demonstrate the proposed methodology.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Chemical Engineering(all)