Post by hydrodynamics on Jan 19, 2016 15:31:35 GMT
One of the things we see at our company (www.hydrodynamics.com) is that for the same reaction such as biodiesel transesterification it makes more sense to batch at small flows and continuous at large flows. This can be due to up front capital costs (highly accurate flow meters/pumps can be $) as well as ease of control/operation. Has anyone else seen this? What's the smallest flow continuous process you've seen?
In my experience each chemistry has its own break-heaven where continuous flow is more profitable than batch. It's not directly related to the value of the product but to the complexity of the plant. When comparing the two you have to take into account the whole costs of the two alternatives. I've seen that in some applications the single fixed cost of a stirrer (engine+transmission+impeller) is enough to justify a move towards continuous flow chemistry.