Technology Profile: HDPE Production via Slurry-Loop Process
By Intratec Solutions |
This column is based on “HDPE Production via Slurry Loop Process – Cost Analysis,” published by Intratec. The report can be found at the following URL: www.intratec.us/analysis/hdpe-production-cost.
High-density polyethylene (HDPE) is one of the three main types of polyethylene, and is among the most commonly used polymers worldwide. HDPE applications include blow-molding, injection molding, blown and cast film, pipes and tubing, wire and cable coating and more.
Figure 1. The diagram shows the production of homopolymer HDPE via slurry loop process[/caption]
The following paragraphs describe a slurry-loop process for HDPE homopolymer production. Figure 1 presents a simplified flow diagram.
Feed Preparation. This area comprises a catalyst activation system (fluidized-bed activator) and fixed-bed treaters for purification of ethylene monomer and isobutane, which are used as diluent in the polymerization.
Polymerization. In a loop reactor, the monomers and the catalyst suspension are mixed and circulated. As the polymer particles precipitate, they do not dissolve in the slurry. Cooling water in the reactor jacket removes reaction heat. The slurry is continuously discharged to a flash chamber, for removing residual…