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On-line application of the divergence criterion for runaway detection in isothermal batch reactors: simulated and experimental results

Project ID: G1RD-CT-2001-00499
Funded under: FP5-GROWTH


This is a report from the AWARD project (Advanced Warning And Runaway Disposal) - (Growth Project G1RD-CT-2001-00499).

In this work we have extended the application on-line of the divergence criterion for the early warning detection of runaway in isothermal reactors. In this case, it is necessary to take into account the temperature dynamics inside the jacket that depends on the heating/cooling system installed in the plant as well as on its control devices. For this reason, the jacket temperature has been included in the state space reconstruction for the calculation of the divergence of the system.

Divergence reconstruction has been validated beforehand using simulation results. This has allowed analysing the most suitable reconstruction strategy.

Furthermore, the experimental validation has been carried out using experimental data from a bench-scale 2 L reactor and from a 100 L pilot plant reactor. The results show that the system is able to distinguish between runaway and non-runaway situations and it does not produce false alarms during heating/cooling due to changes in the temperature set-point.

In order to develop a robust early warning detection system it is now necessary to show its feasibility in "realistic" situations, i.e. in industrial plants under normal and abnormal operating conditions. Our experimental research is continuing along these lines.

Additional information

Authors: ZALDIVAR J M, European Commission, Joint Research Centre, Institute for Environment and Sustainability, Ispra (IT);BOSCH J, Carlo Cattaneo University, Quantitative Methods Institute, Castellanza (IT);STROZZI F, Carlo Cattaneo University, Quantitative Methods Institute, Castellanza (IT)
Bibliographic Reference: EUR 20414 EN (2002), pp.29. Free of charge
Availability: Available from European Commission, JRC Knowledge Management Unit, Ispra (IT) Tel: +39 033278 9843 or +39 033278 9864 Fax: +39 033278 9623 E-mail:
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