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The Applications of Quantum Mechanics Simulation for Solvent Selection in Chemicals Separation

Authors: Attapong T., Hong-Ming Ku, Nakarin M., Narin L., Alisa L, Jirut W.


The quantum mechanics simulation was applied for calculating the interaction force between 2 molecules based on atomic level. For the simple extractive distillation system, it is ternary components consisting of 2 closed boiling point components (A,lower boiling point and B, higher boiling point) and solvent (S). The quantum mechanics simulation was used to calculate the intermolecular force (interaction force) between the closed boiling point components and solvents consisting of intermolecular between A-S and B-S. The requirement of the promising solvent for extractive distillation is that solvent (S) has to form stronger intermolecular force with only one component than the other component (A or B). In this study, the systems of aromatic-aromatic, aromatic-cycloparaffin, and paraffindiolefin systems were selected as the demonstration for solvent selection. This study defined new term using for screening the solvents called relative interaction force which is calculated from the quantum mechanics simulation. The results showed that relative interaction force gave the good agreement with the literature data (relative volatilities from the experiment). The reasons are discussed. Finally, this study suggests that quantum mechanics results can improve the relative volatility estimation for screening the solvents leading to reduce time and money consuming

Keywords: Extractive distillation, Interaction force, Quamtum mechanic, Relative volatility, Solvent extraction.

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