Analysis and optimization of enantioselective extraction in a multi-product environment with a multistage equilibrium model

M. Steensma, N.J.M. Kuipers, A.B. de Haan, Gerard Kwant

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45 Citations (Scopus)


Based on a single stage model and experimental results for enantioselective extraction of amino acids and amino alcohols, simulations are carried out for a fractional extractor using a multistage equilibrium model. A higher pH, lower temperature, higher concentrations and a higher excess of extractant all result in higher purities in both product streams, but a higher wash stream is required to realise good yield and good purity. The improved purity can be explained from a higher operational selectivity in the single stage, from lower variation of the extraction factors along the extractor, or from a combination of these effects. Application of ‘reflux’ results in higher product purities at a lower wash stream requirement, but a lower process capacity. It was shown that various combinations of process conditions result in the desired product specifications (99% yield and 98% enantiomeric excess for both extract and raffinate). This leads to optimization possibilities in a multi-product environment: the more stages available above the minimum number for a specific compound, the larger the process capacity for that compound. All systems for which a single stage selectivity of 1.5 was obtained can be separated in a multi-product extractor containing 50 stages, evenly distributed over the wash and strip section.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)996-1005
JournalChemical engineering and processing : process intensification
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2007



  • IR-78863
  • Enantiomer
  • Fractional extraction
  • Multistage modelling

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