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Hitachi

Equipment supply

In petrochemicals and other areas of the chemical industry, the pharmaceutical industry, foods, metal refining and other areas where extraction, washing and separation processes are used, there is demand for extractor equipment that can improve product purity, contribute to the rationalization and higher productivity of facilities, save energy, and completely remove harmful substances from wastewater. Ultrex can play a key and expanding role in energy conservation, in response to customer needs.

Case Introduction: Ultrex

Photograph: Ultrex

Overview
model UEL-120
Application Optical resin monomer refining

What is Ultrex?

In the chemicals industry, there is a general need for processes that can separate and refine specific components from uniformly mixed fluids. One effective process for performing this task is known as liquid-liquid extraction. Liquid-liquid extraction uses the difference in density between two insoluble fluids in which a solute is dissolved (distribution phenomenon). In industrial terms, one method is to use a separator machine known as a settler to separate the extracted fluid from the remainder fluid based on density; other methods include the vacuum, multi-step, and spray methods. However, all of these methods easily become inefficient, and if the difference in density is small, the operation can be difficult to execute. Our high-performance centrifugal extractor (Ultrex) uses high-speed centrifugal force to process fluids efficiently in short timespans, even if the difference in density is small. Our product lineup includes two models: the Ultrex-E, which even works with fluids with solid particles that easily cause blockage, and the Ultrex UE with enhanced extraction capacity.

(in-house comparison)

Scope of supply

We offer our customers total support, from engineering through delivery and installation, to commissioning and maintenance.

The selection of a centrifugal extractor depends on the state of the extracted fluid and the remainder fluid within the fluid to be processed (material properties, heat stability, viscosity, shape, etc.), and there are complex questions concerning processing volume and extraction density at entry/exit that must be addressed. We choose specifications based on processed fluid data from our customers. We verify functionality in our experimental facilities, and we offer assurances of the ability to achieve performance. We offer installation, commissioning and maintenance for Ultrex, and in our EPC solutions we offer design, procurement, and construction for Ultrex peripheral racks, piping, electric, and control systems.

Fields of application

General

  • Pharmaceuticals industry
  • Food industry
  • Petrochemicals industry
  • Resins industry
  • General industry

Breakdown by product

Pharmaceuticals

  • Extraction of antibiotics
  • Extraction of vitamins
  • Extraction of herbal medicines

Foods

  • Refining of vegetable oil
  • Rubber removal

Petrochemicals

  • Extraction of aromatics
  • Refining of solvents, cleansing
  • Refining surfactants
  • Refining of fats
  • Refining of rubber products
  • Extraction/refining of acetic acid
  • Refining of silicon oil
  • Refining of peroxide

Resins

  • Refining of polycarbonate resin
  • Refining of epoxy resin
  • Refining of phenol resin
  • Cleansing of all types of resin solvents
  • Photoresist

General

  • Recovery and removal of useful components from wastewater
  • Metals extraction

Technology

Model E

In the model E, concentric tubular V-rings are used instead of the conventional concentric tubular porous dispersion plates, to deal with solid particles suspended in the processing fluid, or solid particles formed during the extraction process. The rotors made up of these V-ring rotate at high speed, causing countercurrent contact between the heavier and lighter fluids, which results in the extraction process. The heavier and lighter fluids are introduced into the rotors from both sides of the spinning axis. Centrifugal force propels the heavier fluid to the outside of the rotors, while the lighter fluid moves toward the axis. Between these two areas, tens of V-ring slits cause countercurrent contact between the two fluids, causing repeated dispersion and reunion, resulting in an efficient extraction.

The advantages of using V-rings

  • Shrinkage relative to radial slits, and expansion after passing through slits. This shrinkage/expansion of the flow path helps maintain the ideal mixture of heavier and lighter fluids.
  • The use of V-rings helps maintain uniformity in the transverse direction of the fluid, reducing drift.
  • The diagonal portion of the V-rings helps move solid particles toward the outside, using force to prevent clogs.

(in-house comparison)

Model UE

The model UE is best for processing fluids that contain no solid particles, as it uses porous cylinders to form separate alternating chambers. In this method, the width of the porous cylinders is small, and the changes caused by centrifugal force are small, making it difficult for drift to occur within the fluid; combined with progressively barrier effects, extraction efficiency is vastly improved.