Gas Permeation Computations with Mathematica


  • Housam Binous National Institute of Applied Sciences and Technology


We show a new approach, based on the utilization of Mathematica, to solve gas permeation problems using membranes. We start with the design of a membrane unit for the separation of a multicomponent mixture. The built-in Mathematica function, FindRoot, allows one to solve seven simultaneous equations instead of using the iterative approach of Professor Geankoplis. For this problem, the permeate and residue compositions as well as the membrane area are obtained. We also study the separation of air using membranes for each of the following cases: complete-mixing, cross-flow, countercurrent flow and co-current flow models. We show that membrane areas are within 10% of each other for all four cases. We find that the most efficient flow pattern is the countercurrent case followed by cross-flow and co-current flow, while the complete-mixing model gives the poorest performance. Finally, we plot the composition profile in both sides of the membrane module for the cross-flow case. The notebooks are available from the author upon request or at Wolfram Research.

Author Biography

Housam Binous, National Institute of Applied Sciences and Technology

Hausam Binous is a full-time faculty member at the National Institute of Applied Sciences and Technology in Tunis. He earned a Diplome d'ing(mieur in biotechnology from the Ecole des Mines de Paris and a Ph.D. in chemical engineering from the University of California at Davis. His research interests include the applications of computers in chemical engineering.






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