Tools for Integrated Decision Making in the Chemical Industry

December 31, 2015

Alliance

Tools for Integrated Decision Making in the Chemical Industry

Principal Investigators
MIT: G.McRae
ETH: K.Hungerbuhler, E.Heinzle, A.Linninger
UT: M.Hirao

In chemical process, design time to market is crucial. Under this condition, time-consuming consideration on sustainability issues are typically neglected. The goal of this research is to provide computer-supported tools that enable chemical engineers to consider sustainability issues in the design process without considerable loss of time.

Goals/Objectives
The goal of this research is to provide tools for the design of environmentally benign chemical processes. It is essential to provide industrial process developers with tools that can be applied in early design phases where most important decisions are made. The steps leading to this include:

  • Definition and Measurement of Design Objective Functions
  • Development of Design and Decision Tools
  • Collection of case Studies to establish design and verify decision tools

Results
A framework has been developed for multi-objective decision-making (i.e. considering environmental and possibly also social objectives in addition to economic ones) in chemical process design. The framework considers the different steps in the development of a chemical process and takes account of uncertainty in early phases. The framework has been applied to case studies and it has been demonstrated that it is a valuable tool in supporting chemical process design.

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