Dr. Thana Sornchamni


Dr. Thana Sornchamni

Petroleum and Petrochemical Process Technology Research Department, Innovation Institute, PTT, Public Company Limited, Thailand

Title: The Development of Microchannel Heat Exchanger: from Lab-scale to commercial scale

Abstract: In the current design of LLDPE Plant, unreacted Olefins in polymerization process are sent to the conventional heat exchanger, to condense unreacted Olefins, and recycle them to polymerization process. Unfortunately, only 70% unreacted Olefins can be recovered with the normal operation, resulting in the significant loss of raw materials. Through the collaborative efforts between PTT and GC, we developed a novel design Microchannel Heat Exchanger (MHX) to supplement the existing conventional heat exchanger. Our MHX, which contains a hundred of micro channels, provides the benefits of high heat and mast transfer. In our development, we used ANSYS software simulation to design and to analyze fluid movement and stress inside the MHX. Both lab scale and pilot scale of MHX had been performed in the side-stream unit at LLDPE plant. The results showed that MHX has the overall efficiency three times higher than conventional heat exchanger, and 75% in size reduction, without any change of refrigerant conditions. We are currently scale-up this MHX for commercial operation.  

Biography:  Dr.Thana is a manager of Petroleum and Petrochemical Process Technology Research Department, Innovation Institute, PTT Public Company Limited. He received his B.Eng from Faculty of Engineering, Chulalongkorn University, and his M.S. and Ph.D. from Oregon State University in US.  After graduation, he worked as an application engineer in a biotechnology company in Oregon for about two years before returning Thailand to join PTT.  His current research focus at PTT is in the field of process intensification in various applications, eg. microchannel heat exchanger and CO2 utilizations using microreactor.