2006-S2-Q2-Solution - CHE3109 2006 Question 2 Model...

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CHE3109 2006 - Question 2 - Model Answer (a) Explain how a “thermal explosion” or “runaway reaction” occurs. With the aid of appropriate diagrams, explain why, for a given combination of reaction and reactor, stable operation may result at low temperatures, whereas runaway may occur at higher temperatures. (12 marks) (b) Figure 1 (see page 18 of this examination paper) is a plot of the rate of heat generation by a reaction as a function of the temperature of reactor contents. The reactor is equipped with a cooling jacket with a heat transfer area of 1.8 m 2 . The cooling effect of the jacket is achieved by using the heat from the reactor to isothermally generate saturated steam from saturated water (the coolant). The overall heat transfer coefficient for heat transfer between the reactor contents and the coolant in the jacket is 2990 W/m 2 .K. When the coolant temperature is 210°C, deduce what happens if the initial reaction temperature is (i) 230°C and (ii) 243°C. (7 marks) Estimate the maximum critical coolant temperature (i.e. maximum coolant
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