Comparison of structured adsorbents for the adsorptive isolation of food ingredients from large streams

Rodriguez Illera, M.; Boon, M.A.; Boom, R.M.; Janssen, A.E.M.


We present guidelines for the configuration of industrial scale chromatographic separation of small molecules. We compared the performance of different axial packed beds, channeled monoliths and a continuous monolith assuming silica as base material. The calculated mass transfer rates were used to calculate the height of a theoretical plate (HETP). The HETP and pressure drop relations as a function of velocity were used to calculate the resultant velocity and packing length for different conditions (efficiency, pressure drop, affinity constant and throughput). The specific productivity of channeled monoliths can be up to 2.5 orders of magnitude higher than that of a packed bed. This implies that at large scales (in which the pressure drops need to be limited, and the flow rate is high), channeled monoliths are preferred since they may reduce the equipment size up to 100 times and the required resin volume up to 1000 times. Accordingly, we demonstrate the potential of channeled monoliths in chromatographic processes but also draw a window pointing out the feasible configurations to use with the highest productivity for a given set of process requirements.