Study and comparison of four continuous reactors from two different experiments:

 Monitor the dispersion (NaCl) in water for determination residence time

The saponification of ethyl acetate by soda


  • Two diaphragm pumps, variable flow rate.
  • Two glass vessels for constant feed by overflow.
  • Variable rate Stirrer, SS stirring shaft with SS four blades helix.
  • 3 stirred glass reactors, pipe overflow, conductivity and temperature, drain valve and tracing injection.

– Perfectly stirred reaction vessel

– Perfectly stirred cascade vessels

  • 2 plug glass reactors, conductivity and temperature measurement and tracer injection.

    – 1 reactor coil, empty.

    – 1 reactor piston, packed.


  • 2 flowmeters.
  • 2 conductivity probes.
  • 2 temperature probes Pt100Ω.


Dim : 175 x 70 x 235 cm – 150 kg
SS framework 40 x 40mm


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The chemical reactors

Chemical engineering refers especially to chemical reaction engineering.

Indeed, chemical reactions, catalyzed or not, are at the heart of all industrial syntheses.

Study of a chemical reaction, in a perfectly-stirred reactor, permits the operator to understand

the influence of the different parameters in the optimization of the chemical synthesis with a view to its industrialization.


Residence time distribution (RTD)

Monitoring the tracer concentration over time gives a RTD graph for a reactor.


This method is used to:

– characterize flow in a continuous reactor.

– determine the mean residence time.

– check whether the reactor corresponds to the model.

– check that there are no short-circuits or blind spots.


Conversion rate

Consider a chemical reaction: A + B -> C + D.

The conversion rate X is defined relative to a reagent which disappears, e.g. XA.

The conversion rate defines the quantity of product consumed at a time t.

In a closed system it is defined by: nA = na0 (1-XA)


Comparison of four different reactors with the same volume

One perfectly stirred reactor

A cascade of two perfectly stirred reactors

One plug-flow reactor

One tubular reactor


Hydrodynamic study of the reactors by the residence time distribution method

Determine residence times

Compare theoretical and experimental results


Determine the chemical conversion rate by conductivity measurement

Materials balance, reaction yield

Compare the efficiency of the different reactors