Optimization of the use of energy is of fundamental importance, particularly in view of the increasing tensions between energy supply and demand which the world now faces. Chemical processes in general, and distillation processes in particular, account for a significant fraction of the world's energy usage. For example, distillation processes account for around 3% of the energy utilization in the US. There is thus a significant incentive to so design systems that energy utilization is minimized. Much progress has been made by the application of simple methods such as pinch technology (see for instance B. Linnhoff and R. Smith, Section 1.7 of the Heat Exchanger Design Handbook, also published by Begell House), but the problems encountered in complex distillation systems are such that a much higher level approach is needed.
Both authors, Michael Georgiadis and Efstratios Pistikopoulos are from the Centre for Process Systems Engineering (CPSE) at Imperial College. CPSE is an international leader in the areas of process simulation, optimization and control. Once can confidently expect that the application of techniques of the type described in this volume will make an important contribution to making the best use of mankind's increasing scarce energy resources.
197 pages, © 2006