Scielo RSS <![CDATA[Brazilian Journal of Chemical Engineering]]> vol. 31 num. 4 lang. en <![CDATA[SciELO Logo]]> <![CDATA[<b>The effect of the inner cylinder rotation on the fluid dynamics of non-Newtonian fluids in concentric and eccentric annuli</b>]]> Helical flow in an annular space occurs during oil drilling operations. The correct prediction of flow of drilling fluid in an annular space between the wellbore wall and the drill pipe is essential to determine the variation in fluid pressure within the wellbore. This paper presents experimental and CFD simulation results of the pressure drop in the flow of non-Newtonian fluids through a concentric annular section and another section with fixed eccentricity (E = 0.75), using aqueous solutions of two distinct polymers (Xanthan Gum and Carboxymethylcellulose). The hydrodynamic behavior in this annular system was analyzed based on the experimental and CFD results, providing important information such as the formation of zones with preferential flows and stagnation regions. <![CDATA[<b>Utilization of immobilized lipases as catalysts in the transesterification of non-edible vegetable oils with ethanol</b>]]> This work reports the use of commercially available immobilized lipase preparations (Novozym® 435 and Lipozyme TL IM, both from Novozymes, and Lipase PS IM from Amano) as catalysts in the transesterification reaction of different alkyl-chain triglycerides with ethanol. The ethanolysis of native oils from Brazilian Amazon plants andiroba (Carapa guianensis), babassu (Orbignya sp.), jatropa (Jatropha curcas), and palm (Elaeis sp.) was studied in a solvent-free system. In a typical reaction, the immobilized preparations were added to the mixture of vegetable oil-to-ethanol in a molar ratio of 1:9. The reactions were performed at 50 ºC for a maximum period of 48 h. Under the conditions used, all the immobilized lipase preparations were able to generate the main esters of fatty acids present in the tested feedstocks, and both the reaction rate and ester yield were dependent on the source of lipase and vegetable oil. The viscosity values for the samples obtained in each reaction displayed a consistent reduction in relation to their original feedstocks, which also confirms the high conversion of triglycerides to ethyl esters (99.8-74.0%). The best performances were obtained with Amano PS IM and Novozym® 435, with the biodiesel samples from the babassu and jatropha oils exhibiting viscosity values in accordance with those predicted by the technical standards of ASTM D6751 (1.9-6.0 mm²/s). Lipozyme TL IM displayed an unsatisfactory performance, indicating that the conditions of the transesterification reaction should be improved. This comparative study using different catalysts and several vegetable oil sources with varying fatty acid compositions is particularly important for all tropical countries with a diversity of native vegetable oil sources. <![CDATA[<b>Characterization and spray drying of lipase produced by the endophytic fungus <i>Cercospora kikuchii</i></b>]]> A lipase from the endophytic fungus Cercospora kikuchii was purified, biochemically characterized and the effects of spray drying on stabilization of the purified enzyme were studied. The lipase was purified 9.31-fold with recovery of 26.6% and specific activity of 223.6 U/mg. The optimum pH and temperature were 4.6 and 35 ºC, respectively, while the Vmax was 10.28 µmol/ protein and Km 0.0324 mM. All the metal ions tested enhanced the enzyme activity. The lipase retained almost 100% activity in the presence of strong oxidants and was also resistant to Triton X, Tween 80 and 20 and SDS, as well as to proteases. The purified lipase was spray dried and kept until 85.2% of enzymatic activity. At least 70% of the enzymatic activity was maintained for spray dried purified lipase during the storage period. The lipase produced by Cercospora kikuchii has properties useful for industrial application and showed adequate stabilization and retention of its enzymatic activity after spray drying. <![CDATA[<b>Metabolic capabilities of <i>Actinobacillus succinogenes</i> for succinic acid production</b>]]> Attention has been focused on microbial succinic acid production as an alternative for conventional chemical synthesis that is associated with environmental pollution. A metabolic model for Actinobacillus succinogenes 130Z was developed with a mixture of glucose and xylose as substrate. The metabolic fluxes during succinicate production were determined using flux balance analysis by linear programming optimization in the MATLAB environment. Different glucose ratios (0.3, 0.4 and 0.7 mol.mol-1substrate) were used as model assumptions to calculate optimal fluxes, maximum growth and succinate production. The model revealed that higher growth rates and product yields were correlated with higher glucose content in the substrate mixture. When glucose constituted 0.5 mol.mol-1 substrate, a lower succinate yield (0.64 mol.mol-1 substrate) was obtained, compared to 0.73 mol.mol-1 substrate when glucose was used individually. Deletion of different unessential reactions in the model showed that a knockout of the acetate formation pathway would increase the succinate yield by 21% when glucose and xylose were used in equal molar ratios. <![CDATA[<b>Production and characterization of di-rhamnolipid produced by </b><i><b>Pseudomonas aeruginosa</b></i><b> TMN</b>]]> Pseudomonas aeruginosa TMN was used to produce rhamnolipid (RL) from a variety of carbon and nitrogen substrates. The most favorable carbon sources for RL production were glucose and glycerol (both at 40 g/L), giving a RL yield of 0.3 and 0.25 g/L, respectively. Meanwhile, sodium nitrate appeared to be the preferable nitrogen source, resulting in a RL production of 0.34g/L. Rhamnolipid production from P. aeruginosa TMN was affected by temperature, pH and agitation rate, with 37 ºC, pH 7 and 200 rpm agitation favorable for rhamnolipid production. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and electro spray ionization - mass spectrometry (ESI - MS) analyses indicated that the purified product contained one type of commonly found rhamnolipid, which is L-rhamnosyl-L-rhamnosyl-β-hydroxydecanoyl-β-hydroxydecanoate. The rhamnolipid product can reduce the surface tension of water to 34 mN/m with a critical micelle concentration of nearly 18.75 mg/L and emulsified kerosene by 46%. P. aeruginosa TMN strain is a potential source of rhamnolipid biosurfactant, which could be used for the development of bioremediation processes in the marine environment. <![CDATA[<b>Phytoremediation potential of aquatic herbs from steel foundry effluent</b>]]> Discharge of industrial effluents in aquatic environments is a serious threat to life due to toxic heavy metals. Plants can be used as cheap phytoremedients in comparison to conventional technologies. The present study was conducted to check the phytoremediation capability of two free-floating plants, i.e., Pistia stratiotes and Eichhornia crassipes, for the removal of heavy metals from steel effluent by using Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometry. P. stratiotes was able to remove some of the heavy metals, showing the highest affinity for Pb and Cu with 70.7% and 66.5% efficiency, respectively, while E. crassipes proved to be the best phytoremediant for polluted water as its efficiency was greatest progressively for Cd, Cu, As, Al and Pb, i.e., 82.8%, 78.6%, 74%, 73% and 73%, respectively. In conclusion, aquatic plants can be a better candidate for phytoextraction from industrial effluents due to cost effectiveness. <![CDATA[<b>Nanofiltration</b>: <b>ion exchange system for effective surfactant removal from water solutions</b>]]> A system combining nanofiltration and ion exchange for highly effective separation of anionic surfactant from water solutions was proposed. The subjects of the study were nanofiltration polyethersulfone membranes and ion-exchange resins differing in type and structure. The quality of the treated solution was affected by numerous parameters, such as quality of the feed solution, membrane cut-off, resin type, dose and the solution contact time with the resin. A properly designed purification system made it possible to reduce the concentration of anionic surfactant below 1 mg L-1 from feed solutions containing surfactant in concentrations above the CMC value. <![CDATA[<b>Effect of internal recirculation velocity in an anaerobic sequencing batch reactor (ASBR)</b>]]> This paper discusses the effect of different internal recirculation velocities on the mixture and shear stress on the flocs in an anaerobic sequencing batch reactor (ASBR). Thus, simulations are performed using a computational fluid dynamics (CFD) tool to evaluate this dependency. The analysis of velocities and turbulent kinetic energy indicates that the highest flow evaluated (0.003 m³/s) results in better mixing within the reactor. However, care must be taken with the recycling pipe size, in order to maintain the shear stress inside the range of optimal values. <![CDATA[<b>Three-dimensional simulation of liquid flow on a sieve tray under different inclinations</b>]]> The fluid state on a sieve tray will change when the towers tilt under wind loads. A computational fluid dynamics (CFD) model was used to predict the flow patters and hydraulics on the tray under different inclinations. The gas and liquid phases are modelled with the volume-of-fluid (VOF) framework as two inmiscible phases. Several three-dimensional transient simulations were carried out for a 0.38m diameter tray with varying liquid weir loads and inclined angles. The clear liquid height determined from these simulations is in reasonable agreement with experimental measurements carried out for air-water in a round tray of the same dimensions. The simulation results show that, compared with the horizontal tray, the circulation area is bigger when the liquid flow and inclination direction of the tray are the same, but when they are opposite the circulation area is smaller. The percentage of circulation area to the tray area can obviously be decreased, along with increasing liquid weir loads. It is concluded that CFD can be used for the prediction of liquid flow on sieve trays under different inclinations <![CDATA[<b>Wet oxidation of glycerol into fine organic acids</b>: <b>catalyst selection and kinetic evaluation</b>]]> The liquid phase oxidation of glycerol was performed producing fine organic acids. Catalysts based on Pt, Pd and Bi supported on activated carbon were employed to perform the conversion of glycerol into organic acids at 313 K, 323 K and 333 K, under atmospheric pressure (1.0 bar), in a mechanically agitated slurry reactor (MASR). The experimental results indicated glycerol conversions of 98% with production of glyceric, tartronic and glycolic acids, and dihydroxyacetone. A yield of glyceric acid of 69.8%, and a selectivity of this compound of 70.6% were reached after 4 h of operation. Surface mechanisms were proposed and rate equations were formulated to represent the kinetic behavior of the process. Selective formation of glyceric acid was observed, and the kinetic parameter values indicated the lowest activation energy (38.5 kJ/mol) for its production reaction step, and the highest value of the adsorption equilibrium constant of the reactant glycerol (10-4 dm³/mol). <![CDATA[<b>Acrylamide inverse miniemulsion polymerization</b>: <b><i>in situ</i>, real-time monitoring using nir spectroscopy</b>]]> In this work, the ability of on-line NIR spectroscopy for the prediction of the evolution of monomer concentration, conversion and average particle diameter in acrylamide inverse miniemulsion polymerization was evaluated. The spectral ranges were chosen as those representing the decrease in concentration of monomer. An increase in the baseline shift indicated that the NIR spectra were affected by particle size. Multivariate partial least squares calibration models were developed to relate NIR spectra collected by the immersion probe with off-line conversion and polymer particle size data. The results showed good agreement between off-line data and values predicted by the NIR calibration models and these latter were also able to detect different types of operational disturbances. These results indicate that it is possible to monitor variables of interest during acrylamide inverse miniemulsion polymerizations. <![CDATA[<b>Simulation of the solidification in a channel of a water-cooled glass flow</b>]]> A computer simulation study of a laminar steady-state glass flow that exits from a channel cooled with water is reported. The simulations are carried out in a two-dimensional, Cartesian channel with a backward-facing step for three different angles of the step and different glass outflow velocities. We studied the interaction of the fluid dynamics, phase change and thermal behavior of the glass flow due to the heat that transfers to the cooling water through the wall of the channel. The temperature, streamline, phase change and pressure fields are obtained and analyzed for the glass flow. Moreover, the temperature increments of the cooling water are characterized. It is shown that, by reducing the glass outflow velocity, the solidification is enhanced; meanwhile, an increase of the step angle also improves the solidification of the glass flow. <![CDATA[<b>CFD modeling of two immiscible fluids mixing in a commercial scale static mixer</b>]]> A Computational Fluid Dynamics model based on the Eulerian formulation for multiphase flow was developed to model the mixing hydrodynamics of two immiscible fluids in a commercial scale static mixer. The two immiscible liquids were condensate and caustic solutions and were considered as two phases that are interpenetrating each other. The aim of this study was to develop a comprehensive Computational Fluid Dynamics model for predicting the impact of hydrodynamic parameters such as length, diameter and the arrangement of the corrugated plates of a static mixer on the degree of mixing and the pressure drop of the mixture. The model has been evaluated by comparing predictions of the degree of mixing and the mixture pressure drop with the same data available for the static mixer of the desulfurization plant of the Kharg petrochemical company. It has been shown that the predictions of the developed model are well adapted to the experimental data. <![CDATA[<b>Mathematical modeling of a convective textile drying process</b>]]> This study aims to develop a model that accurately represents the convective drying process of textile materials. The mathematical modeling was developed from energy and mass balances and, for the solution of the mathematical model, the technique of finite differences, in Cartesian coordinates, was used. It transforms the system of partial differential equations into a system of ordinary equations, with the unknowns, the temperature and humidity of both the air and the textile material. The simulation results were compared with experimental data obtained from the literature. In the statistical analysis the Shapiro-Wilk test was used to validate the model and, in all cases simulated, the results were p-values greater than 5 %, indicating normality of the data. The R-squared values were above 0.997 and the ratios Fcalculated/Fsimulated, at the 95 % confidence level, higher than five, indicating that the modeling was predictive in all simulations. <![CDATA[<b>A modified orthogonal collocation method for reaction diffusion problems</b>]]> A low-order collocation method is often useful in revealing the main features such as concentration and temperature profiles and the effectiveness factor for porous catalyst particles. Two modifications are introduced in this paper to make the method more efficient. The first modification is to add an extra collocation point at the center of the particle. It is shown that such extra point introduces a single variable non-linear equation to be solved after obtaining the standard collocation method solution. In the second modification, the polynomial solution obtained from the application of the orthogonal collocation method is transformed to a rational function form. These two modifications are applied to specific examples and it is shown that they can improve the performance of collocation methods in general and the one-point collocation method in particular. <![CDATA[<b>Comparison of an impec and a semi-implicit formulation for compositional reservoir simulation</b>]]> In compositional reservoir simulation, a set of non-linear partial differential equations must be solved. In this work, two numerical formulations are compared. The first formulation is based on an implicit pressure and explicit composition (IMPEC) procedure, and the second formulation uses an implicit pressure and implicit saturation (IMPSAT). The main goal of this work is to compare the formulations in terms of computational times for solving 2D and 3D compositional reservoir simulation case studies. In the comparison, both UDS (Upwind difference scheme) and third order TVD schemes were used. The computational results for the aforementioned formulations and the two interpolation functions are presented for several case studies involving homogeneous and heterogeneous reservoirs. Based on our comparison of IMPEC and IMPSAT formulations using several case studies presented in this work, the IMPSAT formulation was faster than the IMPEC formulation. <![CDATA[<b>Fitting equation of state parameters in parallel computers</b>]]> This work compares two strategies to fit parameters of equations of state in parallel computers, emphasizing solutions that require few changes to existing sequential programs. One strategy uses the conventional Nelder-Mead algorithm coupled with parallel objective function evaluation (SSPO). The other strategy uses a parallel Nelder-Mead algorithm coupled with sequential objective function evaluation (PSSO). The PSSO strategy, which executes parallel one-dimensional searches during each iteration, is simpler to implement and converged to parameter sets with objective functions smaller than those obtained by the SSPO strategy. The SSPO strategy produced speedups consistent with the number of processes used and is more suitable when many processors are available. Both strategies are potentially useful and choosing between them is a matter of convenience, depending on the problem at hand. With parallel computers increasingly available, the easy implementation and convenience of these two strategies should appeal to developers and users of thermodynamic models. <![CDATA[<b>Removal of lactobionic acid by electrodialysis</b>]]> Lactobionic acid has a number of applications, such as in cosmetic formulations and detergents, as well as in the medical field, where it is used for the preservation of organs destined for transplantation. Previous studies have reported that a promising alternative procedure for the production of lactobionic acid is the biotechnological route, using permeabilized cells of Zymomonas mobilis to produce sorbitol and lactobionic acid from fructose and lactose. However, the acid produced during the process accumulates in the reaction medium, causing enzyme deactivation. It was found that this problem can be avoided by coupling an electrodialysis unit to the reaction vessel, resulting in efficient removal of the acid from the reaction medium and improved the stability of the enzyme. These tests employed a synthetic mixture containing lactobionic acid, sorbitol, lactose, and fructose, and a factorial design was performed to identify the most influential variables. The NaCl concentration in the concentrate stream, together with the potential difference, exerted the greatest effects on the rate of removal of lactobionic acid. In all experiments, the removal efficiency exceeded 95%. The best conditions for the system investigated were a potential of 60 V, and NaCl concentrations of 3 and 25 g L-1 in the concentrate stream and the electrode compartment, respectively. <![CDATA[<b>Kinetics and adsorption isotherm of C-phycocyanin from <i>Spirulina platensis</i> on ion-exchange resins</b>]]> C-phycocyanin is a natural blue dye extracted from Spirulina platensis, which has many applications in the food and pharmaceutical industries. In this paper the effect of pH and temperature on the adsorption of C-phycocyanin onto two different ion exchange resins (Streamline DEAE and Streamline Q XL) for expanded bed adsorption chromatography was investigated. Moreover, the kinetics and adsorption isotherm were evaluated. The equilibrium for the Q XL matrix was reached after 60 min, while for DEAE it was only reached after 140 min. C-phycocyanin showed the highest partition coefficient at pH 7.5 for both resins at 25 ºC. The C-phycocyanin adsorption isotherm was very well represented by the Langmuir, Freundlich and Langmuir-Freundlich models, where the estimated values for Qm and Kd obtained by the Langmuir isotherm were, respectively, 33.92 mg.mL-1 and 0.123 mg.mL-1 for DEAE, and 28.12 mg.mL-1 and 0.082 mg.mL-1 for the Q XL matrix. A negative cooperativity was observed for C-phycocyanin binding when the Q XL matrix was used, while the cooperativity was purely independent using the DEAE matrix. <![CDATA[<b>Polyimide hollow fiber membranes for CO<sub>2</sub> separation from wet gas mixtures</b>]]> Matrimid®5218 hollow fiber membranes were prepared using the dry-wet spinning process. The transport properties were measured with pure gases (H2, CO2, N2, CH4 and O2) and with a mixture (30% CO2 and 70% N2) in dry and wet conditions at 25 ºC, 50 ºC, 60 ºC and 75 ºC and up to 600 kPa. Interesting values of single gas selectivity up to 60 ºC (between 31 and 28 for CO2/N2 and between 33 and 30 for CO2/CH4) in dry condition were obtained. The separation factor measured for the mixture was 20% lower compared to the single gas selectivity, in the whole temperature range analyzed. In saturation conditions the data showed that water influences the performance of the membranes, inducing a reduction of the permeance of all gases. Moreover, the presence of water caused a decrease of single gas selectivity and separation factor, although not so significant, highlighting the very high water resistance of hollow fiber membrane modules. <![CDATA[<b>Removal of the synthetic dye Remazol Brilliant Blue R from textile industry wastewaters by biosorption on the macrophyte <i>Salvinia natans</i></b>]]> Batch experiments were carried out for biosorption of Remazol Brilliant Blue R dye onto the macrophyte Salvinia natans. Effects of parameters such as initial dye concentration, pH, biosorbent dosage, contact time and temperature were investigated. Chemical and morphological characteristics of the biosorbent were evaluated before and after the biosorption process using methods such as Optical Microscopy (OM), Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), Thermogravimetric Analysis (TA), Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC) and Infrared Spectroscopy (FT-IR). Sorption kinetics were conducted and followed a pseudo-second order kinetic model. Equilibrium data were well represented by the Langmuir model. Salvinia natans exhibited a maximum uptake of 61.9 mg.g-1. The Dubinin-Radushkevich model indicated that the adsorption takes place by a physical process. Thermodynamic parameters were estimated. The negative values of the Gibbs energy indicated the spontaneous nature of the adsorption. The entropy was positive and the positive value of the enthalpy showed that the process is endothermic. <![CDATA[<b>Insight of the removal of nickel and copper ions in fixed bed through acid activation and treatment with sodium of clay</b>]]> The bentonitic clays show good adsorptive characteristics, being used as alternative material for removing metals. This study evaluates several treatments (calcination, acid activation and treatment with sodium) of bentonite type Bofe in the removal of nickel and copper. Analyses were performed for physicochemical characterization of clay using the techniques: X-ray fluorescence (XRF), thermal analysis (TG and DTA), X-ray Diffraction (XRD), the ethylene glycol monoethyl ether (EGME) method, N2 adsorption (BET) and Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM). Among the changes induced by acid activation and sodium transformations, the treatment with sodium chloride in fixed bed showed the highest performance in the monocomponent removal of nickel and copper. <![CDATA[<b>Influence of salts on the coexistence curve and protein partitioning in nonionic aqueous two-phase micellar systems</b>]]> Aqueous two-phase micellar systems (ATPMS) can be exploited in separation science for the extraction/purification of desired biomolecules. Prior to phase separation the surfactant solution reaches a cloud point temperature, which is influenced by the presence of electrolytes. In this work, we provide an investigation on the cloud point behavior of the nonionic surfactant C10E4 in the presence of NaCl, Li2SO4 and KI. We also investigated the salts' influence on a model protein partitioning. NaCl and Li2SO4 promoted a depression of the cloud point. The order of salts and the concentration that decreased the cloud point was: Li2SO4 0.5 M > NaCl 0.5 M ≈ Li2SO4 0.2 M. On the other hand, 0.5 M KI dislocated the curve to higher cloud point values. For our model protein, glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD), partitioning experiments with 0.5 M NaCl or 0.2 M Li2SO4 at 13.85 ºC showed similar results, with K G6PD ~ 0.46. The lowest partition coefficient was obtained in the presence of 0.5 M KI (K G6PD = 0.12), with major recovery of the enzyme in the micelle-dilute phase (%Recovery = 90%). Our results show that choosing the correct salt to add to ATPMS may be useful to attain the desired partitioning conditions at more extreme temperatures. Furthermore, this system can be effective to separate a target biomolecule from fermented broth contaminants.