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Studies on the runaway reaction of ABS polymerization process

Authors
Journal
Journal of Hazardous Materials
0304-3894
Publisher
Elsevier
Publication Date
Volume
159
Issue
1
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2007.09.124
Keywords
  • Abs Copolymer
  • Emulsion Polymerization
  • Runway Reaction
  • Vent Sizing
  • Calorimetry

Abstract

Abstract Taiwan has the largest acrylonitrile–butadiene–styrene (ABS) copolymer production in the world. Preventing on unexpected exothermic reactions and related emergency relief hazard is essential in the safety control of ABS emulsion polymerization. A VSP2 (Vent Sizing Package 2) apparatus is capable of studying both normal and abnormal conditions (e.g., cooling failure, mischarge, etc.) of industrial process. In this study, the scenarios were verified from the following abnormal conditions: loss of cooling, double charge of initiator, overcharge of monomer, without charge of solvent, and external fire. An external fire with constant heating will promote higher self-heat rate and this is recommended as the worst case scenario of emulsion polymerization on butadiene. Cooling failure coupled with bulk system of reactant was determined to be the credible worst case in ABS emulsion polymerization. Finally, the emergency vent sizing based on thermokinetics from VSP associated with DIERS methodology were used for evaluating the vent sizing and compared to that of the industrial plants.

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