Wednesday, 30 July 2008

Breaking down barriers with real time, on-line calculation – Process Development using Calorimetry

Reaction calorimetry has been well recognised as a valuable aid to process development. Not only for safety and safe scale up, but also as an aid for guiding the synthetic route and process optimisation. However, uptake by development chemists has been VERY limited, this due partly to cost but more often due to the complexity of the calculations needed for data generation.

HEL has been developing calorimetry solutions for over 21 years and have come up with a new technology that makes calorimetry accessible to development chemists on ANY stirred reactor without special features or adaptations. When a reactor is computer controlled, nothing exceptional is needed – with computer control in place and the availability of temperature data, on-line heat release rate data can be readily generated.

The results are quantitative, rather than just indicative, and available without any effort or additional experimental time for activities such as calibration. When greater accuracy is needed, a heat flow (HF) meter may be used to perform a quick calibration check. This too is made simple and requires no knowledge of calorimetry methodology by the user.

These features can also be integrated into custom reaction calorimeters, including some older existing units. This will enable the users to save time, both by speeding up experiments and eliminating the need for off-line data analysis.

Where this new technology is implemented with a power compensation calorimeter, the on-line analysis will produce exact results without any assumptions being necessary. And for such systems there are no calibrations required. In the case of HF calorimeters, for the most accurate results one calibration is needed, although this is also completely automated and the online calibration calculations are used immediately for the reaction being performed.

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