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Separation Process Engineering: Includes Mass Transfer Analysis, Third Edition by Phillip C. Wankat

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10.8 Packed Column Internals

In a packed column used for vapor-liquid contact, the liquid flows over the surface of the packing and the vapor flows in the void space inside the packing and between pieces of packing. The purpose of the packing is to provide for intimate contact between vapor and liquid with a very large surface area for mass transfer, which according to Eq. (1-4) will increase the rate of mass transfer. At the same time, the packing should provide for easy liquid drainage and have a low pressure drop for gas flow. Since packings are often randomly dumped into the column, they also have to be designed so that one piece of packing will not cover up and mask the surface area of another piece.

Packings are available in a large variety ...

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