Gas dispersion in the oxygen delignification process, TAPPI Journal May 2021

Application: Information related to gas dispersion offers the possibility to develop and improve the perfor-mance of the oxygen delignification process.

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Author: Jari Käyhkö, Heikki Mutikainen, Kari Peltonen, Riku Kopra, and Markus Honkanen
Gas dispersion in the oxygen delignification process, TAPPI
ABSTRACT: There has been very little knowledge about the state of gas dispersion in the oxygen delignification process, even though this has a major impact on the performance of the reactor. This paper presents a new continu-ous inline method for measuring oxygen bubble size distribution in the reactor, as well as results from studies con-ducted in softwood and hardwood lines. This new measurement worked well, and new information about oxygen bubble size, as well as how different reactor conditions affected the distribution, was obtained. For example:œ In the softwood line, the mean volume-weighted bubble size was about 0.1 mm, whereas in the hardwood line, this size was almost 10 times higher. For both lines, there was considerable variation in the measured bubble size over the long term.œ For both lines, an increase in mixer rotation speed caused a discernible decrease in the bubble size, and an increase in oxygen charge caused a discernible increase in the bubble size.œ In the softwood line, no coalescence of the bubbles in the reactor was observed, but in the hardwood line, some coalescence of the larger bubbles occurred.œ In the test conducted in the hardwood line, the use of brownstock washer defoamer caused a discernible increase in oxygen bubble size.œ In the hardwood line, reactor pressure had a noticeable effect on the amount of delignification, which indicated that improving mass transfer of oxygen (e.g., by decreasing the oxygen bubble size, in this case) should also have an increasing effect on the delignification.

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