Hydraulic Wash Column

The industrial purification of chemicals through e.g. distillation requires large amounts of energy and/or solvents. An alternative method, developed by TNO in the Netherlands, consists of melt crystallisation in combination with the Hydraulic Wash Column and delivers products with purity up to 99,9% in one step and a reduction in energy consumption from 20% up to 90% compared to distillation.

SoliQz B.V. has been established to commercialise the Hydraulic wash column for a broad range solid/liquid separation applications. This is done in close co-operation with Armstrong-Chemtec who bring their proven continuous crystallisation process and over 50 years of experience in designing and building of process equipment for the chemicals industry.

15 years of intense technology development at TNO have proven that the TNO HWC® technology delivers high purity products for a wide range of compounds at lab-scale. This performance was confirmed at the pilot scale by performing 50+ trials on the 8cm HWC column. From there onwards the technology has been successfully scaled-up to pilot and industrial scale. At SoliQz we believe there are many more opportunities in the purification of bulk chemicals, bio-based monomers and polymers as well as broad range of specialty chemicals and pharmaceutical intermediates that would strongly benefit from the implementation of melt crystallisation in combination with the Hydraulic Wash Column.

The SoliQz Team is ready to help customers with the successful implementation of this state-of-the-art technology.

SoliQz B.V. will provide its customers with support and equipment throughout the different phases of the technology implementation. Customers with a demand for high purity solid/liquid separation can come to SoliQz for a feasibility study. Once the feasibility is proven, pilot trials can be executed at the new SoliQz plant (to be completed in Q4 2014). Upon successful pilot trials, SoliQz will provide technical/process support as well as the design and construction of dedicated plant and equipment.

Implementation of the technology delivers significant OPEX and CAPEX cost benefits:

Reduction of OPEX is achieved by delivering:

  • Product purity up to 99,9% in one step (impurity concentration after washing is 100-1000 times lower than in the mother liquor)
  • Energy savings of 20% up to 90% versus distillation
  • No use of solvents
  • No wash liquid consumption.

Reduction of CAPEX is achieved by delivering:

  • Truly continuous process increases the throughput of the HWC by up to 50% per m2/hr. compared with other wash columns.

Further operational benefits are:

  • A very stable operation due to intrinsic self-correction for bed height and wash front.
  • Reliable operations and lower maintenance due to absence of rotating and moving parts.

Example of an industrial scale melt crystallizer (back) and Hydraulic wash column (front)

See our poster for more information