1999 Progress Report: Integrated Applications of the Clean Process Advisory System to P2-Conscious Process Analysis and Improvement

EPA Grant Number: R825370C077
Subproject: this is subproject number 077 , established and managed by the Center Director under grant R825370
(EPA does not fund or establish subprojects; EPA awards and manages the overall grant for this center).

Center: EERC - National Center for Clean Industrial and Treatment Technologies (CenCITT)
Center Director: Crittenden, John C.
Title: Integrated Applications of the Clean Process Advisory System to P2-Conscious Process Analysis and Improvement
Investigators: Shonnard, David R. , Kline, Andrew A. , Barna, Bruce A. , Rogers, Tony N.
Institution: Michigan Technological University
EPA Project Officer: Klieforth, Barbara I
Project Period: January 1, 1997 through January 1, 1999
Project Period Covered by this Report: January 1, 1998 through January 1, 1999
RFA: Exploratory Environmental Research Centers (1992) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Center for Clean Industrial and Treatment Technologies (CenCITT) , Targeted Research


The purpose of this research project is to design cleaner and more profitable chemical processes through the application of rigorous optimization techniques. We intend to show that methods currently used to judge optimization performance on a monetary scale may be applied to judge a process on a non-monetary basis (environmental). Another goal is to demonstrate integrated assessment of chemical process economic and environmental attributes using CPAS™ software already developed from prior CenCITT and other EPA support. The specific objectives are:

1) Develop a rigorous chemical process design and improvement methodology for integrating environmental and economic measures of performance.
2) Further demonstrate the applications of multiple CPAS™ tools (EFRAT, DORT, and DEAR) by applying them in close coordination with a chemical process simulator (HYSYS™ ) for design evaluation of a suite of case studies.
3) Evaluate the influences of model uncertainty on the process optimization methodology. We will set up the framework for this analysis and apply it to a small number of model parameters.
4) Disseminate the results from these case study applications by publishing the results in peer-reviewed journals and presentation of results at national meetings.

Progress Summary:

Efficient chemical process designs are the key to future economic success and environmental protection. The chemical process and allied products industries, including petroleum refining, have provided innovative products and processes for the economy of the United States and for the global economy as well. However, estimates show that these industries are responsible for up to 80% of the industrial hazardous waste generated, treated, and disposed of in the U.S. each year. It has been estimated that approximately 5% of the raw materials entering these processes exit as waste stream components.

Previous process improvement methodologies minimized equipment and operating costs under the constraints of imposed emissions reduction targets. Unfortunately, focusing on single environmental or economic endpoints neglects the reality that there are multiple environmental and human health impacts, which are affected by process optimization. The application of simultaneous economic and environmental optimization will address this important need for improving chemical process design based on multiple evaluation criteria.

We propose a three-step method for rigorous process optimization as shown in Figure 1. In the first step, which is termed "Input/Output Screening," an initial critical examination of the process is performed resulting in a set of "Process Diagnosis Summaries". A process flowsheet is created and material and energy balances are performed using a commercial process simulator (HYSYS™ for our study). Then input/output tables for energy consumption and process emissions are created to spot process improvement opportunities. This step leads to an initial set of process parameters for consideration and process simulation.

The second step is referred to as "Parameter Identification". The objective functions, which are selected as the basis of the optimization, can consist of total annual cost, environmental impact indexes, or net present value. The process simulator and the CPAS™ software will again interact very closely to generate economic and environmental performance curves for each parameter studied. A Scaled Gradient Analysis is performed to identify a reduced parameter set to carry forward to the last step in the procedure.

In the last step of the project, "Multi-Variable Optimization", we will utilize the optimization capabilities within HYSYS and couple that capability with the assessment function of the SCENE software. This will allow us the flexibility to optimize on any single objective function, economic or environmental, or to utilize Analytic Hierarchic Processing (AHP) through the DEAR software as a method to generate a single objective function from multiple indexes of process performance.

Figure 1. Generalized optimization method for integrating environmental and economic objectives into process design. SCENE is a software package for interfacing the environmental and economic assessments with a commercial process simulator; EFRAT is the Environmental Fate and Risk Assessment Tool which is a software that calculates 9 environmental risk indexes; DORT (Design Options Ranking Tool) is the economic index calculator; and DEAR is the AHP process design decision software tool.

Through the efforts of Mr. Eric Oman and his parallel project "Establishing Automated Linkages Between Existing P2-Related software Design Tools", we have an integrated software tool for automated assessments of economic and environmental process attributes, and this capability has been linked to a commercial process simulator, HYSYS. There are three graduate students working on this project at the present time. Hui Chen is a student in Chemical Engineering working toward a Ph.D. degree. Ms. Chen is leading the environmental assessment efforts using the EFRAT software within SCENE. Brendan O'Donnell is a M.S. student in Chemical Engineering and is in charge of the economic assessments using the DORT software within SCENE. Prasad Patgaonkar is a M.S. student in Chemical Engineering and is working on the optimizer in HYSYS with the process assessment software tools.

Thus far, we have successfully demonstrated the input/output analyses and scaled gradient analysis (SGA) by applying the integrated suite of tools to a single case study process; VOC recovery and recycle from a gaseous waste stream using absorption into a heavy oil followed by distillation. We have verified that the SGA leads logically a reduced parameter set for subsequent optimization activities and that economic and environmental indices provide similar and consistent information to the scaled gradient analysis. We intend to have the optimization of the gaseous waste stream finished in the near future.

Journal Articles on this Report : 1 Displayed | Download in RIS Format

Other subproject views: All 2 publications 1 publications in selected types All 1 journal articles
Other center views: All 157 publications 45 publications in selected types All 36 journal articles
Type Citation Sub Project Document Sources
Journal Article Raymond, J.W., T.N. Rogers, D.R. Shonnard, and A.A. Kline, "A Review of Structure-Based Biodegradation Estimation Methods." accepted for publication, Journal of Hazardous Materials, 1999. R825370C064 (1999)
R825370C077 (1999)
not available

Supplemental Keywords:

RFA, Scientific Discipline, INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION, Ecosystem Protection/Environmental Exposure & Risk, Sustainable Industry/Business, cleaner production/pollution prevention, Sustainable Environment, Technology for Sustainable Environment, computing technology, Economics and Business, pollution prevention, Environmental Engineering, in-process changes, in-process waste minimization, industrial design for environment, industrial process design, cleaner production, environmentally conscious manufacturing, green design, pollution prevention design tool, pollution prevention assessment, clean technology, Design Option Ranking Tool (DORT), physico-chemical properties, computer science, Clean Process Advisory System (CPAS), CPAS, industrial process, process modification, chemical manufacturing, industry pollution prevention research, chemical properties tool, chemical processing, information technology, innovative technology, process analysis, industrial innovations, outreach and education, environmental fate and risk assessment tool (EFRAT), green technology

Relevant Websites:

process design assistance software, P2 design tools, CPAS.

Progress and Final Reports:

Original Abstract
  • 1997
  • Final

  • Main Center Abstract and Reports:

    R825370    EERC - National Center for Clean Industrial and Treatment Technologies (CenCITT)

    Subprojects under this Center: (EPA does not fund or establish subprojects; EPA awards and manages the overall grant for this center).
    R825370C032 Means for Producing an Entirely New Generation of Lignin-Based Plastics
    R825370C042 Environmentally Conscious Design for Construction
    R825370C046 Clean Process Advisory System (CPAS) Core Activities
    R825370C048 Investigation of the Partial Oxidation of Methane to Methanol in a Simulated Countercurrent Moving Bed Reactor
    R825370C054 Predictive Tool for Ultrafiltration Performance
    R825370C055 Heuristic Reactor Design for Clean Synthesis and Processing - Separative Reactors
    R825370C056 Characterization of Selective Solid Acid Catalysts Towards the Rational Design of Catalytic Reactions
    R825370C057 Environmentally Conscious Manufacturing: Prediction of Processing Waste Streams for Discrete Products
    R825370C064 The Physical Properties Management System (PPMS™): A P2 Engineering Aid to Support Process Design and Analysis
    R825370C065 Development and Testing of Pollution Prevention Design Aids for Process Analysis and Decision Making
    R825370C066 Design Tools for Chemical Process Safety: Accident Probability
    R825370C067 Environmentally Conscious Manufacturing: Design for Disassembly (DFD) in De-Manufacturing of Products
    R825370C068 An Economic Comparison of Wet and Dry Machining
    R825370C069 In-Line Copper Recovery Technology
    R825370C070 Selective Catalytic Hydrogenation of Lactic Acid
    R825370C071 Biosynthesis of Polyhydroxyalkanoate Polymers from Industrial Wastewater
    R825370C072 Tin Zeolites for Partial Oxidation Catalysis
    R825370C073 Development of a High Performance Photocatalytic Reactor System for the Production of Methanol from Methane in the Gas Phase
    R825370C074 Recovery of Waste Polymer Generated by Lost Foam Technology in the Metal Casting Industry
    R825370C075 Industrial Implementation of the P2 Framework
    R825370C076 Establishing Automated Linkages Between Existing P2-Related Software Design Tools
    R825370C077 Integrated Applications of the Clean Process Advisory System to P2-Conscious Process Analysis and Improvement
    R825370C078 Development of Environmental Indices for Green Chemical Production and Use