Robust Optimal Design of an Glycerol Etherification Process

E. Vlad, C. S. Bildea, G. Bozga

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Glycerol ethers are valuable fuel additives produced by reaction of glycerol with isobutene. The processes presented in the literature use high-purity isobutene and are designed assuming accurate knowledge of reaction kinetics and physical properties. The optimal design of a plant processing 2.25kmolh-1 glycerol, using isobutene of 90% purity, is addressed considering the uncertainty of the design data. Plants with small reactors have the lowest total annual cost, but the recycle flow rates greatly increase when uncertain variables affect the process, constraining the operation feasibility. The optimal design, fulfilling the constraints despite uncertainty, is found by constructive nonlinear dynamics. The robustness of the optimal design is proved by dynamic simulation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)251-258
Number of pages8
JournalChemical Engineering and Technology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 1 2013


  • Etherification
  • Glycerol ethers
  • Process control
  • Process design

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering

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