Modeling ultrafiltration and filtration phenomena applied in chemical pulping processes

No Thumbnail Available
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Doctoral thesis (article-based)
Checking the digitized thesis and permission for publishing
Instructions for the author
Degree programme
49, [57]
Chemical engineering report series, Kemian laitetekniikan raporttisarja, 44
This thesis is based on seven publications dealing with separation processes applied in the manufacturing of chemical pulp. The first part discusses the correlation of mass transfer phenomena in the ultrafiltration of spent cooking liquor. The second part focuses on the fiber mat formation that takes place in pulp washers and thickeners. The main interest throughout the thesis is to develop useful and scientifically justified methods for correlating mass transfer and filtration mechanisms in order to interpret the phenomena taking place in the studied unit operations. The methods presented can be used in the designing and dimensioning of industrial-scale equipment and systems. Two types of basic mass transfer models, the film model and a more complete approach utilizing an integral solution for two-dimensional diffusion, have been introduced for the calculation of the macrosolute concentration at the surface of the ultrafiltration membrane. A pilot-scale test rig was used to measure ultrafiltration of spent cooking liquor. Mass transfer correlations to estimate the permeate flux have been developed based on both models to be used for plant design calculations. The modeling studies indicated that the integral solution method gave a physically more realistic behavior for the macrosolute concentration at the membrane wall than the widely used film model. It was further shown that dynamic programming may be effectively used to optimize a multistage industrial-scale ultrafiltration-diafiltration process. This method required a shorter calculation time and resulted in slightly better optimal conditions than the direct search algorithm. The studies on mat formation during pulp washing showed that the washing tester is a useful tool to obtain the required information for the washer. A calculation procedure has been developed to obtain design parameters for the dimensioning of industrial pulp washers. The suggested theory was based on Darcy's law under the conditions of constant pressure filtration of incompressible beds and reasonable accuracy was obtained for purposes of washer design. A more accurate approach for the modeling of the mat formation stage was formulated on the fundamental filtration theory of compressible fiber beds. Two such methods were discussed. In the more general model of mat formation, the equation of continuity during filtration was also taken into account. This model was then used for evaluating the effect of various operational parameters on drum washer performance. This model was also able to predict earlier generated experimental test data rather well. A new method for considering the additional filtration resistance due to suspended gases (e.g. air) was also suggested.
pulping, fiber, spent cooking liquor, mass transfer, ultrafiltration, filtration, optimization, washing
Other note
  • Kovasin, K. and Nordén, H. V., 1984. Determination of lignosulphonate rejection from test results in the ultrafiltration of spent sulphite liquor. Svensk Papperstidning 87, No. 6, R44-R47. [article1.pdf] © 1984 Svensk Papperstidning. By permission.
  • Kovasin, K. K. and Hill, C. G., Jr., 1986. A method for correlating permeate flux in the ultrafiltration of macrosolutes. Journal of Pulp & Paper Science 12, No. 4, J119-J125. [article2.pdf] © 1986 PAPTAC. By permission.
  • Kovasin, K. K., Hughes, R. R. and Hill, C. G., Jr., 1986. Optimization of an ultrafiltration-diafiltration process using dynamic programming. Computers and Chemical Engineering 10, No. 2, pp. 107-114. [article3.pdf] © 1986 Elsevier Science. By permission.
  • Hakamäki, H. and Kovasin, K., 1985. The effect of some parameters on brown stock washing: A study made with a pulp tester. Pulp & Paper Canada 86, No. 9, T243-T249. [article4.pdf] © 1985 PAPTAC. By permission.
  • Kovasin, K. and Tuomi, A., 1986. Entwicklung der Holzschliffeindickung bei hohen Temperaturen. Wochenblatt für Papierfabrikation 114, No. 7, pp. 230-234. [article5.pdf] © 1986 Deutscher Fachverlag GmbH. By permission.
  • Kovasin, K., Nordén, H. V. and Ahonen, L., 1988. Modelling the filtration stage of a pulp washer. Filtration & Separation 25, No. 1, pp. 42-45. [article6.pdf] © 1988 Elsevier Science. By permission.
  • Kovasin, K. and Aittamaa, J., Factors defining the capacity of pulp washers. Paperi ja Puu, accepted for publication on 21.08.2002. To be published in 2003.
Permanent link to this item