Chemical engineering education ( Journal Site )

Material Information

Chemical engineering education
Alternate Title:
Abbreviated Title:
Chem. eng. educ.
Physical Description:
v. : ill. ; 22-28 cm.
American Society for Engineering Education -- Chemical Engineering Division
Chemical Engineering Division, American Society for Engineering Education
Place of Publication:
Storrs, Conn
Publication Date:
annual[ former 1960-1961]


Subjects / Keywords:
Chemical engineering -- Study and teaching -- Periodicals   ( lcsh )
periodical   ( marcgt )
serial   ( sobekcm )


Chemical abstracts
Additional Physical Form:
Also issued online.
Dates or Sequential Designation:
1960-June 1964 ; v. 1, no. 1 (Oct. 1965)-
Numbering Peculiarities:
Publication suspended briefly: issue designated v. 1, no. 4 (June 1966) published Nov. 1967.
General Note:
Title from cover.
General Note:
Place of publication varies: Rochester, N.Y., 1965-1967; Gainesville, Fla., 1968-

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
oclc - 01151209
lccn - 70013732
issn - 0009-2479
lcc - TP165 .C18
ddc - 660/.2/071
System ID:

This item is only available as the following downloads:

John H. Seinfeld, of the California Institute of Technology, written by his colleagues ( PDF )

University of Pittsburgh, Robert Enick, James Cobb, Alan Brainard, Sindee Simon, Alan Russell ( PDF )

The William H. Corcoran Award: Past, Present, and Future, John C. Friendly, C. Gordon McCarty ( PDF )

Process Design Curriculum at Penn: Adapting for the 1990s, Warren D. Seider, Arnold Kivnick ( PDF )

A Project-Oriented Approach to an Undergraduate Biochemical Engineering Laboratory, Brian S. Hooker ( PDF )

Book Reviews ( PDF )

A Vision of Exceptional Teaching Amidst Exceptional Research, L.E. Scriven ( PDF )

Things I Wish They Had Told Me, Richard M. Felder ( PDF )

Teaching Staged-Process Design Through Interactive Computer Graphics, Kenneth R. Jolls, Michelle Nelson, Deepak Lumba ( PDF )

DuPont Design Internship in Industrial Pollution Prevention, R.M. Counce, J.M. Holmes, E.R. Moss, R.A. Reimer, L.D. Pesce ( PDF )

Troubleshooting in the Unit Operations Laboratory, Kevin J. Myers ( PDF )

A Holistic Approach to ChE Education: Part 1. Professional and Issue-Oriented Approach, Francesc Giralt, M. Medir, H. Thier, F.X. Grau ( PDF )

Introducing Industrial Practice in the Unit Operations Lab, Thomas R. Marrero, William J. Burkett ( PDF )

Application of an Interactive ODE Simulation Program in Process Control Education, N. Brauner, M. Shacham, M.B. Cutlip ( PDF )

Practical Applications of Mass Balances and Phase Equilibria in Brine Crystallization, M.E. Taboada, T.A. Graber ( PDF )

A Course on Biotechnology and Society, Scott L. Diamond, Arnold I. Kozak ( PDF )

The Synthetic-Data Method, Wallace B. Whiting, Hui-Min hou, Shao-Hwa Wang ( PDF )

A Program for Teaching Oral Presentations, Roger G. Harrison ( PDF )

Full Text

ICalifornia ~ I Insttue f ecnoog

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Spring 1994

Chemical Engineering Education

Volume 28

Number 2

Spring 1994

82 John H. Seinfeld, of the California Institute of Technology,
written by his colleagues
86 University of Pittsburgh,
Robert Enick, James Cobb, Alan Brainard, Sindee Simon, Alan Russell
90 The William H. Corcoran Award: Past, Present, and Future,
John C. Friendly, C. Gordon McCarty

92 Process Design Curriculum at Penn: Adapting for the 1990s,
Warren D. Seider, Arnold Kivnick
98 A Project-Oriented Approach to an Undergraduate Biochemical Engineering
Laboratory, Brian S. Hooker
130 Application of an Interactive ODE Simulation Program in Process Control
Education, N. Brauner, M. Shacham, M.B. Cutlip
140 A Course on Biotechnology and Society, Scott L. Diamond, Arnold I. Kozak
150 A Program for Teaching Oral Presentations, Roger G. Harrison

104 A Vision of Exceptional Teaching Amidst Exceptional Research, L. E. Scriven

110 Teaching Staged-Process Design Through Interactive Computer Graphics,
Kenneth R. Jolls, Michelle Nelson, Deepak Lumba
122 A Holistic Approach to ChE Education: Part 1. Professional and Issue-Oriented
Approach, Francesc Giralt, M. Medir, H. Thier, F.X. Grau
146 The Synthetic-Data Method, Wallace B. Whiting, Hui-Min Hou, Shao-Hwa Wang

Troubleshooting in the Unit Operations Laboratory, Kevin J. Myers
Introducing Industrial Practice in the Unit Operations Lab,
Thomas R. Marrero, William J. Burkett

116 DuPont Design Internship in Industrial Pollution Prevention,
R.M. Counce, J.M. Holmes, E.R. Moss, R.A. Reimer, L.D. Pesce

136 Practical Applications of Mass Balances and Phase Equilibria in Brine Crystalliza-
tion, M.E. Taboada, TA. Graber

108 Things I Wish They Had Told Me, Richard M. Felder

102,119,149 BOOKREVIEWS

CHEMICAL ENGINEERING EDUCATION (ISSN 0009-2479) is published quarterly by the Chemical Engineering
Division, American Society for Engineering Education, and is edited at the University of Florida. Correspondence
regarding editorial matter, circulation, and changes of address should be sent to CEE, Chemical Engineering Department,
University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611-2022. Copyright 0 1994 by the Chemical Engineering Division, American
Society for Engineering Education. The statements and opinions expressed in this periodical are those of the writers and
not necessarily those of the ChE Division, ASEE, which body assumes no responsibility for them. Defective copies replaced
if notified within 120 days of publication. Write for information on subscription costs and for back copy costs and
availability. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to CEE, Chemical Engineering Department., University of Florida,
Gainesville, FL 32611.


of the California Institute of Technology

California Institute of Technology
Pasadena, CA 91125

John Seinfeld was born in Elmira, a small city in upstate
New York about thirty miles from Ithaca. His studious
tendencies showed themselves early, and at age twelve
he was a national finalist in a public-speaking contest spon-
sored by the Optimist Club. As in many small towns in
those days, high school athletics was king-baseball and
golf became his sports. He was a good enough golfer to play
on his high school golf team and, later, for the University of
Rochester. After being named "most likely to succeed" in
his high school graduating class, he went on to the univer-
sity where he chose chemical engineering as a major be-
cause he liked math and chemistry.
He entered the freshman class at the University of Roch-
ester and found himself a classmate of many students from
New York City schools who had already had calculus and
other "advanced" subjects. He requested that he be placed in
the advanced math track but soon found he was swimming
upstream. In the end, he managed to solve every problem in
Thomas's calculus book on his own, and received the high-
est grade in the freshman calculus course.
As an undergraduate in chemical engineering, he was
strongly influenced by two faculty members in that depart-
ment: Stan Middleman (now at the University of California,
San Diego) and David Smith (now at du Pont). John recalls
fondly the famous summer unit operations laboratory taught
by then department chairman, Shelby Miller. Lab reports
returned by Shelby, covered with corrections in his infa-
mous green ink, were dreaded by the students and were their
first experiences with critical report writing. John graduated
first in the College of Engineering at the University of Roch-
ester and decided to attend Princeton for graduate work. He
had used Leon Lapidus's book as an undergraduate and that,

John ... saw an opportunityfor someone who
was deeply trained in mathematical methods,
numerical analysis, and modeling to apply those
approaches to atmospheric air pollution.

Copyright ChE Division ofASEE 1994

together with Princeton's substantial reputation, caused him to
chose Princeton.
At Princeton, he decided to work for Lapidus, who was one
of the earliest to introduce mathematical methods and process
control into chemical engineering. The Princeton chemical
engineering department was a stimulating place under the com-
bined ministrations of Lapidus, Dick Wilhelm (one of the
early pioneers of chemical reaction engineering), and a new
faculty member in the field of fluid mechanics, Bill Schowalter.
Although John was pursuing a thesis in optimal control theory,
he took every fluid mechanics course offered by Bill
Schowalter. "He was such a good teacher that he actually
made me believe that I understood all the tensorial manipula-
tions in rheology," John says.
While at Princeton, John shared an apartment with Steve
Jaffe (now at Mobil Research and Development) and Dale
Seborg (now professor of chemical engineering at the Univer-
sity of California, Santa Barbara). Stories of practical jokes
played on one or another of the three by the other two keep
Steve, Dale, and John laughing to this day. In his final year at
Princeton, he received the Wallace Memorial Fellowship in
Engineering, traditionally given to the most outstanding gradu-
ate student in engineering.
One afternoon at the Princeton bookstore, one of the other
chemical engineers pointed out, with reverence, another shop-
per-James Wei, who was on sabbatical at Princeton from
Mobil. Much later it turned out that John formed a profes-
sional and personal friendship with Jim.
The late 1960s were an exciting time to be a graduate stu-
dent in chemical engineering at Princeton, and many of the
graduate students have gone on to distinguished careers in
industry and academia. The nightly midnight run to the King's
Inn for pizza and beer was almost a departmental function.
Because of the influence of Leon Lapidus, Dick Wilhelm,
and Bill Schowalter, John decided he wanted to pursue
an academic career. There were not a lot of faculty openings
in 1967, but Bill Corcoran of Caltech had written Dick
Wilhelm about an opening in that school's department. John
Chemical Engineering Education

flew out for an interview, and when a position was offered he
eagerly accepted it. He joined the Caltech department in the
fall of 1967.
Chemical engineering at Caltech essentially started in the
early 1940s under the leadership of Will Lacey and Bruce
Sage and the old American Petroleum Institute Project 37
which dealt with thermodynamic properties of hydrocarbon
mixtures. It had become clear by the mid-1960s that it was
time to form a modern department of chemical engineering at
Caltech. Bill Corcoran was appointed as executive officer (the
term used at Caltech for a department chairman position), and
he proceeded to hire Sheldon Friedlander from Johns Hopkins
in 1964 and George Gavalas from the University of Minnesota
in the same year. Fred Shair was added in 1965, and John
joined the department in 1967. An exciting period of growth
followed in which, within a span of five years, Bob Vaughan,
Gary Leal, and Henry Weinberg were added to the depart-
ment. Caltech was well on its way to having one of the pre-
mier chemical engineering departments in the country.
Having done his thesis in the area of optimal control theory,
John continued his research in this area after coming to Caltech.
He was particularly interested in optimal control and param-
eter estimation problems involving partial differential equa-
tions, such as tubular flow reactors and petroleum reservoirs.
He received the American Automatic Control Council's 1970
Donald P. Eckman Award for contributions by a young re-
searcher in the field of control theory.
While some of his colleagues spent their lunch hour swim-
ming or jogging, John has always been an avid lunch-goer,
especially at Caltech's renowned faculty club, the Athenaeum.
And it was during one of those lunches that Shel Friedlander
interested him in the newly emerging field of air pollution.
John immediately saw an opportunity for someone who was
deeply trained in mathematical methods, numerical analysis,
and modeling to apply those approaches to atmospheric air
pollution. So around the year 1970, John started shifting the
emphasis of his research program from control theory to air
pollution. One of his research ambitions has been to introduce
and apply to the analysis of air pollution the level of rigor that
has characterized the traditional approach to chemical reaction
engineering. The soup of both natural and anthropogenic com-
pounds, most present only at trace levels, leads to phenomena
as diverse as greenhouse warming, stratospheric ozone deple-
tion, urban and regional smog, and acid rain. John's research
has been a broad, but deep, attack on virtually all aspects of
the chemistry and physics of air pollutants in the troposphere.
The atmosphere is a giant chemical reactor, with processes
occurring on spatial and temporal scales ranging from a few
centimeters to thousands of kilometers and from milliseconds
to tens of years. In an era when air quality was studied with
box, plume, and puff models, John undertook the development
of air quality models that would apply reaction engineering
techniques to an entire airshed. It was natural to apply these
Spring 1994

models to Los Angeles, which, in addition to being among
the most polluted cities in the United States, offered the
most data on emissions and air quality. This effort produced
the first large-scale urban air pollution model, the precursor
of the one now used nationwide by the Environmental Pro-
tection Agency. Efficient and robust numerical techniques
are of paramount importance for spatially resolved model-
ing of chemical reactors with volumes of several thousand
cubic kilometers. Efforts to develop suitable techniques be-
gan with the 1974 thesis of graduate student Steve Reynolds,
and culminated with that of Greg McRae in 1981. Those
methods form the basis for most airshed modeling even
today. John and his student Donald Dabdub are currently
exploring how air quality models can be implemented on

ME707a V,

Studying atmospheric chemistry in the real atmosphere
is difficult because the air is always moving. At Caltech,
John and Rick Flagan use a large outdoor Teflon reac-
tor, a so-called "smog chamber," to study atmospheric
chemistry under well-controlled conditions. Here, Spyros
Pandis and Suzanne Paulson are conducting an experi-
ment on the atmospheric chemistry of biogenic hydro-

Caltech's massively parallel computers to further increase
the capabilities of the models.
As the airshed models were developed, it became appar-
ent that a lot of important data were either missing or uncer-
tain. This led John to study the details of the chemical
mechanisms and reaction kinetics and to develop techniques
to assess the sensitivity of complex reaction mechanisms to
the rate parameters employed in the models. While John's
understanding of the atmospheric chemistry grew, that chem-
istry was only part of the problem. The atmosphere is full of
particles, haze, fog, and clouds. Indeed, one of the aspects
of air pollution that is first noticed is the haze that forms at
the end of atmospheric reactions. Much less was known
about the atmospheric aerosol. New instruments providing a
picture of the size distribution of the atmospheric aerosol
showed that the particles accumulated at diameters compa-
rable to the wavelength of light, making them very efficient
at light scattering. People had studied coagulation equa-
tions, but there were no comprehensive models to describe
how aerosol particles form and grow in the atmosphere.

John set out to advance aerosol modeling to
the level of the gas-phase reaction models, study-
ing methods for solving the aerosol dynamic
equations as well as the basic physics of aerosol
particle formation and growth. A breakthrough
was made in 1979 by John's student, Fred
Gelbard, with his development of the first codes
to track the evolution of the aerosol distribution
of chemical composition as a function of particle
size. John's continued work in aerosol modeling
has probed the aerosol chemistry, incorporating
models of chemical and phase equilibria into the
description of the atmospheric aerosol.

A recent get-together of John's research
group at his house. At the bottom of the
photo is the youngest chemical engineer in
the group, John's son Benjamin.

The developments on the modeling frontier
were not enough for John. After years of work in
refining the reaction and aerosol models, major
gaps remained-particularly with respect to the
atmospheric aerosol. Field studies were useful
but not sufficient, since the chemical history of
the air being sampled at any particular time de-
pended on the vast pollutants emitted into it and
the detailed reaction history. Experiments were
needed to acquire the missing data. The basic
tool was a smog chamber system developed by
Shel Friedlander. This permitted the study of re-
actions and aerosol development in a captive par-
cel of air in a large (up to 60 m3 volume) Teflon
balloon reactor, located on the roof of the Keck

Laboratory so that the sun could drive the photochemistry as it does in the
atmosphere. The small surface-to-volume ratio of this large reactor made
it ideal for the study of the atmospheric aerosol since wall losses of
submicrometer particles were relatively small. Shel used the system to
study the aerosols produced by photochemical reactions by adding reac-
tants of interest to air drawn from the Pasadena atmosphere.
In 1975 a young assistant professor of environmental engineering sci-
ence, Rick Flagan, joined Caltech, coming from mechanical engineering
at MIT where he had pursued a thesis in the area of combustion. He was
interested in the generation of pollutants in combustion processes, with
special interest in aerosols. Rick Flagan is widely acknowledged as a
superb experimentalist, and shortly after he arrived at Caltech he and John
began a close to twenty-year collaboration on experimental atmospheric
chemistry and aerosols.
Following Shel Friedlander's departure from Caltech, John and Rick
joined forces to revive the smog chamber facility. Although great for
demonstrating atmospheric aerosol dynamics, the existing system was ill-
suited to John's needs for better data on atmospheric reactions since all
sorts of contaminants were brought into the chamber with the Pasadena
air. Graduate student Joe Leone modified the air-handling system so that it
would clean the air to a small fraction of a part per million and began
John's experimental studies of atmospheric photochemical reactions. The
smog chamber studies were so demanding that a tradition was established
of teaming a student working on the gas-phase chemistry with one work-
ing on atmospheric aerosols. The smog chamber provided tantalizing in-
sights into the ways that homogeneous nucleation and aerosol thermody-
namics influence the atmospheric aerosol.
The smog chamber studies were augmented by more controlled bench-
scale studies as well as theoretical investigations. These included labora-
tory studies of the rates and mechanisms of gas-phase reactions, studies of
the fundamentals of nucleation theory, and development of mathematical
models for atmospheric phenomena. Following a recent major gift of
analytical instrumentation, the focus of the atmospheric reaction studies
has turned to molecular identification of both aerosol products and gas-
phase intermediates. Using new instrumentation that makes it possible to
make real-time measurements of the aerosol and the analytical facilities,
John and Rick have just begun a new research initiative, attempting to
understand the aerosol processes that act to control cloud formation and
albedo over the earth's oceans. This program will involve aircraft-based
measurements of aerosols in the marine boundary layer, to be carried out
by Lynn Russell, a graduate student in chemical engineering.
In addition to the graduate courses in air pollution, John has over the
years taught every undergraduate chemical engineering course offered at
Caltech except thermodynamics, and is the author of seven books. His
1986 text, Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics of Air Pollution, has been
adopted worldwide as the standard senior- and graduate-level text in air
pollution. The two-volume set consisting of that book and a second, coau-
thored with Rick Flagan, Fundamentals of Air Pollution Engineering,
constituted Caltech's unique year-long course sequence in air pollution,
covering combustion fundamentals, gas cleaning, aerosol science, atmo-
spheric chemistry, and atmospheric transport and diffusion.
John Seinfeld has been described by some as fanatically organized-
perhaps it was this character flaw that led to his being asked to assume the
Chemical Engineering Education

Betty and John outside Tokushima during a
visit to Japan in 1986.

position of executive officer for chemical engineering
in 1973, only six years after he joined the department
as an assistant professor. Then in 1990 the Caltech
administration asked him to take over as chairman of
the Division of Engineering and Applied Science,
Caltech's equivalent to dean of engineering. What
makes this unusual is that chemical engineering at
Caltech is part of the Division of Chemistry and Chemi-
cal Engineering, not with the other ten or so engineer-
ing departments in the Division of Engineering and
Applied Science. This was just enough of a challenge
to induce John to agree to take on the job. He likes to
point out that at two of the three schools (Berkeley,
Caltech, and the University of Illinois) where chemi-
cal engineering is not administratively grouped with
the other engineering departments, the dean of engi-
neering is a chemical engineer. (Bill Schowalter is
currently Dean of Engineering at Illinois.) An inspira-
tion for John in his administrative roles has been his
academic grandfather, Neal Amundson. When a par-
ticularly burdensome nonessential memo or request
crosses his desk, he frequently asks himself, "What
would Neal do with this piece of paper?" The answer,
of course, is that Neal would throw it away. John is
known for discarding all but the most essential paper-
work-which could be how he keeps such a neat of-
fice. At Caltech, perhaps uniquely among universities,
when one assumes a division chairman position, one
works even harder on research. Currently, John has a
research group of about a dozen graduate students and
postdocs. "My graduate students take precedence over
everything," he says, so short of a call from Caltech's
president, they get top priority on his time.
John has been called on numerous times for na-
tional service and has served on or chaired some of
the most influential national panels in the field of air
Spring 1994

John has been called on numerous times
for national service and has served on or chaired some of
the most influential national panels in the field of air
pollution and atmospheric chemistry.

pollution and atmospheric chemistry. From 1989 to 1991 he was
chairman of the National Research Council Committee on Tropo-
spheric Ozone Formation and Measurement. This committee pro-
duced the highly influential book, Rethinking the Ozone Problem in
Urban and Regional Air Pollution, which has had an enormous ef-
fect on redirecting the nation's efforts toward reducing ozone pollu-
tion at the urban and regional scale. He has just accepted chairman-
ship of the National Research Council Panel on Aerosol Radiative
Forcing and Climate. Global climate change as a consequence of
anthropogenic changes in the chemical composition of the atmo-
sphere poses scientific questions of a nature and interdisciplinary
scope that are unprecedented. Uncertainties in forecasts of climate
change are large and thus far have hampered development of a clear
world plan for mitigating against unacceptable effects. Uncertainties
in the forcing of climate by changes in atmospheric aerosol and
clouds represent the most important uncertainties in this entire area,
and this new panel will attempt to formulate a national multiagency
research plan to address these uncertainties.
While he has received numerous honors and awards, John consid-
ers his most lasting accomplishment to be the role he has played in
the education of his forty-five PhDs and his current group of ten
graduate students. Faculty members alone, among his PhDs, include
Don Cormack (University of Toronto), Tom Peterson (University of
Arizona), Ted Watson (Texas A&M), Greg McRae (MIT), Costas
Kravaris (University of Michigan), Panos Georgopoulos (Rutgers
University), Gideon Grader (Technion), Sonia Kreidenweis (Colo-
rado State University), Spyros Pandis (Carnegie Mellon), Tony Wexler
(University of Delaware), Suzanne Paulson (UCLA), Barbara
Wyslouzil (Worcester Polytechnic Institute), and Frank Shi (Univer-
sity of California, Irvine).
John was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 1982
at the age of thirty-nine, and in 1991 he was elected a Fellow of the
American Academy of Arts and Sciences. In addition to the 1970
Donald P. Eckman Award mentioned earlier, John has received awards
too numerous to list here, recognizing his outstanding contributions
to the profession over the years.
In 1980 John met Betty Becker of Los Angeles and they were
married in 1983. Betty is a former junior high and high school home
economics teacher. Their five-year-old son Benjamin keeps them
both hopping. Betty is an avid quilter who, unfortunately, doesn't
have as much time as she would like to pursue quilting. A couple of
years ago she was president of the Caltech Women's Club, a social
organization of faculty and postdoctoral wives and staff women.
John admits that he is a workaholic, but Betty has been able to get
him to see the value of a vacation away from phones, faxes, and e-
mail. John has also resumed his golfing pursuits-if there is a chal-
lenging course nearby he can be easily persuaded to hit the links. O

M] department

Pittsburgh's Cathedral of Learning

University of Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh, PA 15261
he University of Pittsburgh is located in Oak-
land, a bustling business district two miles from
downtown (pronounced 'dahn-tahn' in
Pittsburghese) Pittsburgh. Approaching the campus by
car or bus, one is greeted by the university's tremen-
dous Gothic structure, the Cathedral of Learning
(shown in the photograph above). The top of the
building provides an excellent view of the commu-
nity: forty floors below, Pitt, Carnegie Mellon Uni-
versity, Carlow College, Carnegie Institute, the Uni-
versity of Pittsburgh Health Center, and Schenley Park
merge to form one of the most exciting and hectic
areas in Pennsylvania.
The University was chartered in 1787 as the Pitts-
burgh Academy and the degree of "Engineer" was
first offered in 1845, although the Chemical Engineer-
ing and Petroleum Engineering departments were not

University of


initiated until 1910. Eventually, these two departments merged, with
the petroleum program becoming a technical elective concentration
for the undergraduate chemical engineers. The department currently
offers MS and PhD degrees in chemical engineering and the MS
degree in petroleum engineering.
The upper section of campus is home to the Michael L. Benedum
Hall of Engineering (shown in a photograph on page 88). This
completely air conditioned, twelve-story building contains class-
rooms, offices, and laboratories equipped for modem research. Six
departments have resided within this facility since 1971, with the
top two floors currently housing the Department of Chemical and
Petroleum Engineering.
Nearly everything needed for an undergraduate's survival, with the
exception of emergency cash, can be found in Benedum Hall. The
engineering library, several computing and experimental labs, end-
less vending machines and a small deli, and a comfortable lounge
area provide the students with a home away from home during the
day. A two-minute walk outside the building takes the student to the
bookstore, the registration area, dormitories, hospitals, Pitt Stadium,
and many fine restaurants.

The campus has several computing facilities available to the stu-
dents, but the most popular for chemical engineers are the computer
centers in Benedum Hall where they have ready access to PCs and
workstations with a wide range of engineering, spreadsheet, and
word-processing software. These machines and other terminals can
also access Pitt's VAX and UNIX mainframe systems. A Cray Y-MP
832 supercomputer is also available to both the University of Pitts-
burgh and Carnegie Mellon University.
Three software packages of particular interest to chemical engi-
neers include Aspen Plus, PRO I, and B-JAC, which are used through-
out the undergraduate curriculum in the design of units. B-JAC, for
example, is a menu-driven heat exchanger design program that is
introduced in our transport phenomena course and used in the senior
design and chemical engineering laboratory courses. Aspen Plus and
PRO II are process simulators that can be used in core courses for the

Copyright ChE Division ofASEE 1994

Chemical Engineering Education

Our student enrollment has
increased dramatically in the last few
years. For example, only 25 BS degrees were awarded
in 1990, but this year over 50 chemical engineers will graduate.

The Centerfor Biotechnology and Bioengineering
with downtown Pittsburgh in the background.
Pittsburgh is known as the City of Bridges.

design of individual units, such as distillation columns in the staged separa-
tion course, or for the simulation of an entire plant in our design course.
Conveniently located on the first floor of Benedum Hall, the George M.
Bevier Engineering Library has 52,000 of the university's three million
volumes, and an additional 761 current journals. It has recently been ex-
panded by 50% and now provides an adequate study area for our students-
even during finals week.

The new Biotechnology Center contains 45,000 net square feet and is the
focal point of Pitt's Center for Biotechnology and Bioengineering. It is
located on the former site of a steel mill and thereby provides a vivid image
of the transformations that have occurred in this city. It contains offices for
faculty from medicine, biological sciences and engineering in addition to
well-equipped, modern laboratories and classrooms. Dr. Jerome Schultz is
director and chief scientist of the Center in addition to being a professor in
the chemical engineering department and the school of medicine.
Chemical engineering faculty involved in biotechnology research include
Drs. Alan Russell, Mohammad Ataai, and Eric Beckman, who have offices
and labs in both Benedum Hall and in the Center.

The University of Pittsburgh Health Center
is a consortium of six local hospitals inte-
grated with the University of Pittsburgh Medi-
cal School. Two members of the chemical
engineering faculty, Drs. Edward Cape and
William Wagner, have primary appointments
in Pediatric Cardiology and the Department
of Surgery, respectively., while Dr. Harvey
Borovetz, an adjunct professor in chemical
engineering, is also in the Department of Sur-
gery. Another faculty member, Dr. John
Patzer, has an active interest in biomedical
research in the Health Center.

Gerald D. Holder has been the department
chairman since 1987. He is responsible for
coordinating teaching, research, undergradu-
ate advising, and administrative activities of
six professors, three research professors, seven
associate professors, five assistant professors,
two research assistant professors, three part-
time instructors, and a visiting professor. The
department also has an excellent staff that
keeps all the administrative, educational, and
research efforts flowing smoothly.
Currently, 200 of the 30,000 Pitt students
are chemical engineering sophomores, juniors,
and seniors pursuing BS degrees. At this time,
50% of our undergrads originate in freshman
engineering. Most of the other half come from
regional colleges and enter our department
during the sophomore or junior year. Our stu-
dent enrollment has increased dramatically in
the last few years. For example, only 25 BS
degrees were awarded in 1990, but this year
over 50 chemical engineers will graduate.

The freshman and sophomore year curricu-
lum is a busy mixture of chemistry, physics,
calculus, philosophy, English literature, fresh-
man engineering, and introductory chemical

Spring 1994

engineering. The junior year provides a heavy dose of chemi-
cal engineering classics such as transport phenomena, ther-
modynamics, reactor design, and staged separations. An en-
gineering statistics course and several chemistry courses
and technical electives are also thrown in to keep everybody
busy. The senior year is composed of courses in process
control, professional practice, technical and nontechnical
electives, and two-term sequences
in undergraduate lab and design.
Class sizes vary between 15 and
50 students, and most of our
tenure stream faculty instruct at
least one undergraduate course
each year. Dr. Taryn Bayles, a vis-
iting professor, is currently teach-
ing two undergraduate courses each
term, and Dr. Julie D'Itri will be
joining our faculty this year after
completing her post-doc at UC
Davis. Her research interests are
in chemical kinetics of atmos-
pheric reactions, heterogeneous ca-
talysis, and pollution abatement and
waste minimization using hetero-
geneous catalysts.
Bioengineering Minor We are
currently considering the establish-
ment of a minor in bioengineering
and are confident that the proposal
will be approved and the program
established within a year. The
requirements for attaining this mi-
nor can be satisfied by appropriate
selection of electives. Chemical Benedum Hall, witI
engineers can receive the minor home of chemi
within the framework of their
137-credit curriculum, with no
additional time or credits required. The sequence consists
of an introductory bioengineering seminar together with
courses in physiology, statistics, and three bioengineering
electives which include courses in orthopedic biomechan-
ics, bioengineering signals and systems, human factors en-
gineering, and introductory courses in biochemistry and bio-
chemical engineering.
ChE Sub-Specialties A major feature of our department
is the availability of areas of concentration which add
considerable breadth to the undergraduate education. Our
students are free to randomly pick their elective courses
from a vast array of chemical engineering, engineering, math,
chemistry, physics, computer science, biology, biochemis-
try, and geology electives. Most of them, however, select
from one of the four technical elective concentrations of
petroleum, polymer, bio-, and environmental engineering.


Each of these areas has an ongoing undergraduate research
program associated with the faculty involved in the curricu-
lum development.
Since interest in biotechnology and bioengineering has
been strong in recent years, we have instituted a three-
course bio sequence for our students. The first course, an
introduction to biochemistry, is designed for students with
minimal biological background and
can be used as a substitute for the
dreaded Physical Chemistry 1. The
students then enroll in a course in
biochemical engineering and must
select one course from the bio-
sciences department, such as
microbiology or principles of
biochemistry. The professors in-
volved in this program and their
areas of research include: Jerome
Schultz and his work on bio-
sensors; Mohammad Ataai, who
is studying bioprocess engin-
eering, large-scale cell culture, and
cellular metabolism; Alan Russell,
who has an extensive research pro-
gram concerning enzymes in ex-
treme environments; Eric Beckman,
who has several joint projects with
Drs. Ataai and Russell; Edward
Cape, studying cardiovascular flow;
William Wagner, who is working
on artificial organs and bio-
compatibility; and John Patzer, who
is involved in the development of
top twofloors the an electrochemical artificial kidney
engineering. and glucose sensing for an artifi-
cial pancreas.
The petroleum engineering se-
quence for undergraduates focuses on reservoir engineering
and includes courses in waterflooding, well-test analysis,
enhanced oil recovery, and petroleum production. Our PetE
program, the oldest one in this country, also offers an MS
degree in Petroleum Engineering which encompasses courses
in reservoir fluid and rock properties, numerical simulation,
advanced enhanced oil recovery, and well logging. Dr. Badie
Morsi coordinates the program and is assisted in instruction
by three part-time faculty members, Drs. Willard Acheson,
Neal Sams, and Pietro Raimondi.
The polymer engineering concentration consists of at
least three technical electives, including courses in polymer
chemistry, structure-property relationships in polymers, and
a material science course in polymer processing. Drs. Eric
Beckman and Sindee Simon instruct the chemical engineer-
ing polymer courses. Beckman has an extremely active re-

Chemical Engineering Education

search program which includes novel polymeric mi-
crostructure via supercritical fluid processing, ther-
modynamics of polymer solutions, plastics recy-
cling technology, and the development of recyclable
polymers. Simon's research efforts involve curing
kinetics, structure/property relationships, and physi-
cal aging of thermosetting polymeric materials.
The University is also a leader in environmental
education. Its Graduate School of Public Health
has major foci on air quality, radiation protection,
and industrial hygiene. One-quarter of the Civil
and Environmental Engineering Department fac-
ulty devote the majority of their professional ef-
forts to control water pollution and manage solid
wastes. Our department collaborates with the Civil
and Environmental Engineering Department in of-
fering a four-course sequence of environmental en-
gineering courses. CEE offers two courses for ChE Tw
students: an introduction to environmental engineer-
ing and a study of environmental engineering processes.
Our students typically complete this sequence by taking
chemical engineering courses concerning atmospheric pol-
lution control and pollution prevention. Drs. James Cobb.
Shiao-Hung Chiang, and Eric Beckman are associated with
the environmental program. Cobb's research activities in-
clude environmental aspects of coal conversion and waste
incineration; Beckman is involved in the development of
recyclable polymers, microsorbation of post-consumer ther-
moplastics, and the removal of heavy metals from soils with
CO2-soluble chelating agents; Chiang's environmental work
is related to coal cleaning technologies.
A new concentration in solids processing should be on-
line within a year. Several of our faculty are developing this
concentration in conjunction with a strong research program
in the transport, processing, and separation of solids. Drs.
Shiao-Hung Chiang, John Tierney, and George Klinzing are
developing the academic program for this technical concen-
tration. Klinzing is heavily involved in pioneering research
in the transport properties of solid particles, and Chiang
developed the LICADO process (LIquid CArbon DiOxide),
a non-aqueous coal cleaning technology employing CO2 as
the separation medium. All of these professors have com-
bined efforts to address coal dewatering in three manners:
an overall macroview of the process, a microview of the
filter cake, and computer modeling of the process.
The department's Catalysis Research group provides one
of the strongest concentrations of catalytic research in any
U.S. university department. The research efforts of Drs.
James Goodwin, George Marcelin, Rachid Oukaci, Dan
Farcasiu, and Irving Wender include the development of
new catalytic materials, adsorption and surface chemistry,
organometallic chemistry, chemical promotion of catalysts,
reaction mechanisms, and catalyst deactivation.

Spring 1994

award-winning undergraduate researchers, Jose Garcia
ind Andrew Riley, doing thermal analysis of polymers.

The department is also a leader in multi-phase chemical
reaction engineering. This effort, headed by Drs. James
Cobb, Badie Morsi, and John Tierney, has resulted in sig-
nificant interaction with industry, providing students with
opportunities for research experience in industrial settings.
We also have one of the largest concentrations of faculty
in thermodynamics in the U.S. Drs. Gerald Holder, Robert
Enick, Eric Beckman, and Alan Brainard are involved in
phase behavior studies of gas hydrates, various supercritical
fluid systems, carbon dioxide-soluble surfactants and che-
lates, and emulsion polymerization in supercritical fluids.

Our students gain laboratory experience in organic chem-
istry, physical chemistry, and instrumental analysis. The
seniors must also complete a two-course sequence in the
undergraduate chemical engineering laboratories. These labs,
located in Benedum Hall, enable the students to gain hands-
on experience with experiments designed to illustrate con-
cepts discussed in their classes. These experimental mod-
ules are associated with transport phenomena, staged sepa-
rations, reactor design, process control, and the chemical
engineering design curriculum. Specifically, the topics in-
clude heat exchangers, distillation and extraction columns,
diffusion cells, climbing film evaporators and wetted-wall
columns, free radical polymerization and crystallization ki-
netics and melting of polymers, CSTRs, differential scan-
ning calorimetry, fluidization, humidification, and catalytic
reactors. A computer module which simulates an AMOCO
resid hydrotreater, developed at Purdue University, has also
been installed on a SUN III workstation. Dr. Alan Brainard
instructs most of the lab sections for our department, and is
also responsible for sharpening the oral and written commu-
Continued on page 145.




Past, Present, and Future

University of Rochester
Rochester, NY 14627

he Chemical Engineering Division of the American
Society for Engineering Education has joined with
Miles Inc. to offer the William H. Corcoran Award
for the best contributed paper to Chemical Engineering Edu-
cation each year. The Division Executive Committee, chaired
by L. Davis Clements, accepted a Miles offer of continuing
sponsorship of the award at its meeting in St. Louis on
November 9, 1993. Miles sponsorship ensures the continua-
tion of this award which has been presented annually since
1986 and enables the Division to provide a small hono-
rarium and nominal travel expenses for the recipient.
Miles Inc. is a Fortune 100 research-based company head-
quartered in Pittsburgh. It has businesses in chemicals, health
care, and imaging technologies. Its operations throughout
North America are organized into Agriculture, Industrial
Chemicals, Organic Products, Polymers, Polysar Rubber,
Diagnostics, Pharmaceutical, and Agfa divisions. In 1992
the company employed about 26,000 people and had
sales of $6.5 billion.
The Corcoran Award was established in 1984 by action of
the Executive Committee of the Division and was approved
by ASEE early the following year. Deran Hanesian presided
at the Division Executive Committee Meeting of November
1984 in San Francisco at which the Award was established.
Dendy Sloan was vice-chair and Bill Beckwith was secre-
tary-treasurer. The committee acted on a written suggestion
from Phil Wankat that the Division establish a best-paper
award. The intent was to encourage faculty to disseminate
their educational contributions as well as their research.
Angie Perna proposed two such awards: one for the best
paper presented at the Annual Meeting and the other for the
best paper published in Chemical Engineering Education

'Past-Chair, ASEE Chemical Engineering Division
2 Manager, University Relations, Miles Inc., Mobay Road,
Pittsburgh, PA 15205-9741

during the calendar year. Beckwith moved that one of the
awards be named in honor of William H. Corcoran, who
had died two years earlier, and Sloan moved that the Corcoran
Award be for the best paper in CEE.
It is fitting that a Division award be named for Bill
Corcoran. He was a tireless ASEE worker, having received
the ASEE Distinguished Service Award for "a creative,
professional life devoted to excellence in engineering
teaching, research, and administration" just two months
before his untimely death on August 21, 1982.* He had
previously received ASEE's highest award, the Benjamin
Garver Lamme Award, in 1979. He had also served as chair
of the Chemical Engineering Division, and in 1978 he was
president of the AIChE.
Corcoran received his BS and MS at CalTech and worked
briefly at Cutter Labs before spending four years during the
war working on rocket ordnance and the Manhattan Project.
He returned to CalTech to earn his PhD in 1948. After
spending a few years at Cutter Labs as director of technical
development, Corcoran joined the chemical engineering fac-
ulty at CalTech in 1952. There he served as executive of-
ficer for chemical engineering and as vice president for
institute relations. Respected both for his research and teach-
ing, as well as for his professional service, Corcoran re-
ceived a number of awards. In the year 1969-70 he won the
Western Electric Fund Award for Excellence in Teaching,
and the Associated Students of CalTech gave him their
Teaching Excellence Award in 1977.
Rich Felder was the first recipient of the Corcoran Award.
The venue was the Division Banquet at Lake Tahoe during

*See "Distinguished Service Citation," Eng. Ed., 31, October
(1982); "ASEE Awards to Burnet and Corcoran," Chem. Eng.
Progr., 92, Sept (1982); "Obituary for William H. Corcoran,"
Chem. Eng. Progr., 95, Sept. (1982); "Resolution for William H.
Corcoran," Chem. Eng. Progr., 95, Oct. (1982)

Copyright ChE Division ofASEE 1994

Chemical Engineering Education

the Reno ASEE Annual Meeting in June 1986. Division
Chair Dendy Sloan had arranged for Corcoran's widow to
be there for the first presentation of a recognition plaque.
Previous winners of the Corcoran Award (see Table 1)
include some outstanding educators and supporters of chemi-
cal engineering education. Seven academics and one indus-
trialist have won the award since its inception. Noel de
Nevers was the most recent recipient, receiving the award at
the ASEE Centennial Meeting at the University of Illinois
in June of 1993. The paper titles show the wide diversity of
subjects considered worthy of the award. All have a direct
bearing on education and educators. This has been a consis-
tent criterion used by selection committees.
A three-person selection committee for the award has
served at the pleasure of the Division Executive Committee.
In recent years the Division Vice-Chair has chaired the com-
mittee, which also included Ray Fahien, editor of CEE, and
the previous year's winner.
No nominations for the award are accepted, and all con-
tributed papers to CEE are eligible for selection. The pur-
pose of the award is to recognize and encourage outstanding
contributions to chemical engineering education as evidenced

by a published paper in CEE during the previous calendar
year. The contribution may be in any area of chemical
engineering teaching, practice, or theory as long as it is
judged to have the potential for a significant and lasting
contribution to education. The selection committee may
establish its own criteria interpreting how papers fulfill
the purpose of the award. The award is given to the
senior author of jointly written papers, with duplicate
plaques provided for coauthors.
Table 1 shows that Chemical Engineering Education has
attracted some outstanding papers from some of the most
prominent educators in the profession. Under the editorship
of Ray Fahien for the last quarter of a century, CEE has
grown into a thriving archival journal serving the en-
tire chemical engineering community. It is the epitome of an
ASEE division journal.
A long and fruitful collaboration between the Division
and Miles Inc. is anticipated. Industrial sponsorship of the
William H. Corcoran Award will further the goals of the
award: to encourage and recognize outstanding contribu-
tions to the archival literature devoted to the improvement
of chemical engineering education. 0

Spring 1994

effl curriculum



Adapting for the 1990s

University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6393

It has long been the custom to require chemical engi
neering undergraduates to design a chemical plant or
some similar entity. Such a requirement serves at least
two purposes: one, to impose upon the students the need to
use the theoretical knowledge to which they have been ex-
posed in their course work in a more nearly practical setting
than is usual in the normal course of study, and two, to
acclimate them to the kinds of designs and economic analy-
ses which many of them will be called on to perform when
they enter industry.
There is another purpose, particularly important in view
of the current emphasis on engineering science in the cur-
riculum. Many students choose to study engineering be-
cause they want "hands-on" exposure to practical problems-
in contrast to the idealized versions which scientists often
solve. But because there is so much information the students
must assimilate and master, the curriculum tends to rein-
force the need for generalization and hence for mathemati-
cal expression and manipulation of that information. Inad-
vertently, this draws the students away from the practical
problems that attracted them into engineering in the first place.
It is very difficult to strike a satisfactory balance between
a thorough grounding in the basics (physics, chemistry, math-
ematics, and the scientific disciplines derived therefrom) on
the one hand, and on the other the descriptive material con-
cerning filters, pumps, boilers, tanks, reactors, towers, heat
exchangers, and the myriad objects which make up the
engineer's world. This search for balance is our justification
for attempting to have the plant-design course make up, in
part, for the "hands-on" courses (machine shop, engineering
laboratories, plant visits) which have been curtailed or
dropped entirely from the curriculum.
Most educational emphasis is, quite properly, on the work
of the individual. Yet, much of modem industry functions
through the work of teams, and only rarely does an indi-
vidual work alone on a project. To prepare students for this
fact of industrial life, design projects are assigned to groups

Warren D. Seider is a professor of chemical
engineering at the University of Pennsylvania.
He and his students are working to advance
the application of computers in chemical engi-
neering, with emphasis on process design,
simulation, and control. In recent years they
have concentrated on the development of high-
performance processes through the reduction
of overdesign by the application of advanced
control systems.

Arnold Kivnick is an adjunct professor of chemi-
cal engineering at the University of Pennsylva-
nia, and is resident consultant to students in the
plant design course. He received both his BS
and PhD degree at Penn, and prior to retirement
his industrial career was largely at the Pennwalt
Corporation. His areas of interest there were
process engineering, process evaluation, and
start-ups and trouble shooting.

of students (two or three at most) who must organize the
job, subdivide the effort among themselves, function effec-
tively as a team to execute the design, prepare the written
report, and deliver the oral presentation. On a few rare occa-
sions, this has even meant that one or two members of
a team had to take over the responsibilities previously
assigned to others who had either fallen short or dropped
out of the group. This scenario is recognized by any en-
gineer who has been part of an industrial organization;
just as in the theater "the show must go on," a work-
ing engineer knows that the job must be done-by whoever
is around to do it.
Thus, the design project is more than just another course
offering; it is the logical conclusion of the undergraduate
chemical engineer's education, embodying a major part of
the material covered in all the previous chemical engineer-
ing courses and demanding (and hopefully inculcating) skills
and disciplines which the student has rarely needed previ-
ously. At Penn, and at many other schools, both written and
oral reports are treated as if they were industrial reports-in
effect, the results of the students' first job in "industry."
As a result of a recent ABET decision to provide flexibil-
ity in design instruction, many curricula can be expected to
shift emphasis toward a more comprehensive design experi-
ence at the senior level. Furthermore, as computers enable
Copyright ChE Division ofASEE 1994
Chemical Engineering Education

students to solve more open-ended problems throughout the
curriculum, it should be possible to provide a more formal
treatment of the design approach at the senior level. A
senior-level two-course sequence has been offered in chem-
ical engineering for many years at Penn, as well as at
other schools, and now other departments will likely con-
sider such a sequence.

The objective of the fall lecture course is to provide a
smooth transition into the spring design project. In previous
courses (which emphasized the engineering sciences) the
students have been exposed to design techniques through
the solution of several open-ended problems, often using the
computer, but they have not yet received training in a sys-
tematic approach to process synthesis, the use of flow-
sheet simulators in process synthesis, or the application
of economic principles in venture analysis. These and
other related subjects are covered in the fall lectures and are
accompanied by numerous homework problems (summa-
rized in Table 1).
The course begins with an introduction to process synthe-
sis as described by Seider.'" To summarize briefly: through
a case study we introduce the synthesis of reaction paths,
the distribution of chemicals, the synthesis of separation
trains, the synthesis of networks of heat exchangers, the
insertion of power-related units (pumps, compressors, and
turbines), and task integration. Then we introduce the AS-
PEN PLUS simulator, with emphasis on the synthesis of the
reactor section of a chemical plant followed by a separation
train. Here also, we use the approach described by Seider.
With one-third of the semester completed, including the
solution of three problems with ASPEN PLUS, we then
undertake a more formal coverage of process synthesis. We
present heuristics for the design of individual separators,
together with the tree of separation-train alternatives, and
then describe the ordered-branch search strategy of Rodrigo
and Seader[21 and solve an illustrative problem.

As a result of a recent ABET decision to provide
flexibility in design instruction, many curricula
can be expected to shift emphasis toward a more
comprehensive design experience at the senior
level. A senior-level two-course sequence has
been offered.. .for many years at Penn

We next review the concepts of thermodynamic availabil-
ity according to Chapter 1 of an excellent monograph titled
Availability (Exergy) Analysis: A Self-Instruction Manual,[31
and follow that by covering thermodynamic efficiency and
lost-work analysis using another excellent monograph, Ther-
modynamic Efficiency of Chemical Processes.'4] The latter
concentrates on refrigeration cycles (which most students
do not study in their thermodynamics courses) as well as
distillation. The principal sources of lost work are identi-
fied, and the students design a refrigerator that significantly
reduces the sources of lost work.
This leads naturally into the synthesis of networks of heat
exchangers, as well as heat and power integration. First, we
discuss the methods that minimize the use of external utili-
ties, including the temperature-interval method15 and the
graphical approach for identifying the "pinch" temperatures.
We solve a problem using the TARGET II program,161 and
then cover the methods of stream-matching (beginning at
the pinch temperatures) as recommended by Linnhoff
and Hindmarsh.m7' Finally, the heat loops are broken and we
examine the effect of heat being exchanged across the
pinch temperatures. Here also the students design a net-
work of heat exchangers.
Since in the synthesis of a process the analysis of indi-
vidual units often involves approximations (e.g., an overall
heat-transfer coefficient), for costly units it is important to
check the approximations by developing a more rigorous
model. We demonstrate this procedure for the design of a
shell-and-tube heat exchanger for which the heat transfer
resistances and pressure drops are adjusted through the
details of the tube bundle and the baffle spacing. Chapter 14
of Plant Design and Economics for Chemical Engineers'[8
provides excellent coverage of the design procedures,
and these procedures are used by the students to design a
multi-pass heat exchanger.
Throughout the course there is a need to estimate capital
and operating costs, in addition to the simpler measures of
profitability such as venture profit and "annualized" cost.
Detailed cost and profitability calculations, however, are
postponed until the topics on process synthesis have been
completed, approximately two-thirds into the semester. At
this point, we cover the factored methods of capital cost
estimation, using Chapter 5 of A Guide to Chemical Engi-
neering Process Design and Economics.'g The students are
also introduced to the implementation of these methods in

Spring 1994

ASPEN PLUS. Then the students learn the principles of
venture analysis through a four-lecture sequence by Adjunct
Professor R. M. Busche. They estimate the fixed capital
investment and a cost sheet for a fermentation flowsheet,
and compute the cash flows as well as the net present value
and the internal return on investment. Dr. Busche also intro-
duces his CASH'92 spreadsheet program, which the stu-
dents may use to carry out similar calculations for their
spring-semester design projects.
The fall lecture course concludes with scheduling of the
senior design projects and the presentation of instructions
for executing the projects during the following spring. The
nature of the design projects and the format of the spring
course are discussed in the next sections.
We do not require the students to purchase a textbook for
the lecture course since there is no existing text that follows
the sequence in which process synthesis and flowsheet simu-
lation are intertwined. Although a text by Douglas, The
Conceptual Design of Chemical Processes, "'I is excellent in
its presentation of a hierarchical design strategy using many
heuristics, it does not readily accommodate the sequence in
Table 1. The heuristics are helpful, however, and are shared
with the students throughout the fall semester.

During the fall semester we invite industrial consultants
to suggest ideas for projects that can be undertaken in the
spring semester. Interested faculty members and the stu-
dents themselves occasionally suggest projects. The pro-
cesses are expected to be timely, challenging, and offer a
reasonable likelihood that the final design will be economi-
cally attractive. We remind the project originators that stu-
dent motivation and faculty enthusiasm are directly related
to the feasibility and potential impact of the final designs.
Potential problems should be workable by seniors without
unduly gross assumptions, good sources of data should exist
for the reaction kinetics and thermophysical and transport
properties, and pertinent references should be provided. In a
recent project involving the reactive distillation of mixtures
with many azeotropes, ARCO provided the thermophysical
property data for the ASPEN PLUS simulator. With the
approval of the course organizers, the students signed a non-
disclosure agreement not to share the data with others.
After a process of winnowing, we prepare an approved
list of projects which includes one or two more than the
required number. In making a selection, each team rates
each project on the list as a first-through-fourth choice, and
whenever possible, we then give the team its first or second
choice. If none of its choices are available, the team is
simply assigned a topic by the professor in charge of the
course. The pedagogical justification behind this practice is
that junior engineers in industry do not have the luxury of
picking jobs; they are simply assigned jobs as the jobs come

up, and will be expected to do the best they can with the
assignments they are given.
The design projects reflect the current interests of the
people who suggest them. In some cases the projects do not
involve the design of a chemical plant (e.g., the design of a
heat-exchange system for a fast-breeder nuclear reactor, or
of a heart-lung machine). Such projects demand assistance
from consultants with specific experience in the pertinent
field, and obviously such problems cannot be assigned un-
less consultants with that specific experience can be found.
Every design problem incorporates a requirement that en-
vironmental and safety issues be taken into account. We
take note of all possible waste materials and investigate the
means and cost of their disposal. We are placing increased
emphasis on the cost of energy, on designs which avoid or
minimize handling of hazardous chemicals, and on protec-
tion against processing accidents. We note that increasingly,
projects are directly related to environmental issues; e.g.,
the design of a tetrahydrofuran plant to achieve "zero emis-
sions," the reduction of NOX in boiler-stack discharges, and
the partial recovery of the carbon content of CO2 from power-
plant off-gases.
Table 2 lists some project titles from 1960 through 1993-
the time-dependent interest in space exploration, nuclear-
power generation, medical technology, ecology, and im-
proved energy efficiency, as well as a variety of chemical or

Chemical Engineering Education

petrochemical processes, is immediately evident. We have
compiled a report, "Process Design Projects at Penn: 100
Problem Statements," in which over one hundred project
descriptions (each about one page in length) presented
to our seniors over a period of twelve years are included.
This report is available from the authors, as are many of
the design reports.

No chemical engineering department has on staff experts
in every aspect of plant design. The progenitors of the plant
design course at Penn, the late Professor Melvin C. Molstad
and A. Norman Hixson, both had ample industrial experi-
ence before and during their academic careers, but it was
obvious to them that the students' efforts would be greatly
enhanced by exposure to other engineers in addition to the
Penn faculty. Since the Delaware Valley is home to many
companies in the chemical processing industries and to the
consulting engineers, contractors, and equipment vendors
who serve them, we have been able to secure the volunteer
services of a body of experienced and competent engineers
to serve as a source of vicarious experience for the students.
Each consultant usually spends two to four hours during
one afternoon per week on alternate weeks throughout the
spring semester. Over the length of the semester, every con-
sultant meets with several of the design groups three or four
times. They provide specific answers to those students who
know enough to ask meaningful questions, and offer guid-
ance and suggestions to those whose progress leaves some-
thing to be desired. They are particularly effective in pro-

viding advice on the best choice of processing equipment
(e.g., in selecting from among vacuum filters, centrifuges,
and hydroclones), materials of construction, plant capaci-
ties, and start-up strategies. In the past five years, our de-
partment has added an adjunct professor, Dr. Arnold Kivnick,
a retired engineer who served for over thirty years as one of
the consultants. His job is to be available as a resident con-
sultant for two days each week during the spring semester.
Over the years, the relationship between the consultants
and the students has developed to a point where the students
feel free, within reasonable limits, to call upon the consult-
ants when the need arises outside of scheduled sessions. The
students have learned that equally competent people, with
different experiences, often reach disparate opinions on the
basis of the same information. They have also learned how
competent people reach conclusions even in the face of incon-
sistent data or when insufficient information is available.
A faculty advisor is assigned to each design team. Even
though his or her experience in the specific area of the
team's problem may be limited, all of the faculty members
have worked as advisors at one time or another, with several
of them serving almost every year. They bring their own
expertise to the project and provide continuity and general
supervision throughout the term. Further, they use their
knowledge of the interests and strengths of their colleagues,
both inside the department and elsewhere in the University,
to direct the students to sources of information and ad-
vice best suited to their needs. As a result of having
advised design teams, all of our faculty have a better appre-
ciation of the important prerequisites that need to be
covered in their own courses.
An indirect objective of the course is to teach the need for
information networks in the development of projects, how
to set up and be part of such a network, and how to perse-
vere in the face of indifference or non-cooperation from
potential sources of information. Experienced design engi-
neers are well aware of the assistance that sales representa-
tives from equipment and material vendors can provide, and
they usually know which colleagues have expertise in areas
of importance to the project and are not shy about consult-
ing them. For the seniors, who have worked individually for
most of their academic lives, this course aims to provide a
taste of professional teamwork. Cooperation among students,
faculty, consultants, and sales representatives, who are all
motivated only by the need to solve a design problem (within
reasonable limits to the time available and the sensitivity of
the often proprietary technical information sought), helps to
build camaraderie between the students and other members
of their chosen profession, while at the same time giving the
students a sense of the value of their own efforts.
We are gratified that several former Penn students, some
of whom received graduate degrees elsewhere, now serve as
consultants in our department. Table 3 lists the current con-

Spring 1994

sultants, the companies which contribute their services, and
the number of years they have been involved in the course.
Penn is, of course, fortunate to be located in an area where
the process industries are very active. There are other schools
of chemical engineering located near major industrial cen-
ters that could enjoy a similar advantage. Also, schools
located in areas served by a local section of the AIChE
should be able to get help of this kind. Even if only one
consultant from outside academic circles is available, it
should provide a worthwhile broadening of exposure for the
undergraduate engineering students.

In bygone years, each plant design project led to one
design that satisfied the problem statement. The develop-
ment and availability of design simulators and the computer
spreadsheet have considerably changed that scenario. They
have so accelerated the design process that it is now reason-
able to require the design teams to choose from among two
or more alternative designs (with the need to study all of
them and to justify their choice) and to optimize the design
ultimately chosen with respect to energy utilization and
choice of operating conditions. In some cases, the simulator
has enabled the students to arrive at more effective pro-
cesses, designs that would not have been possible other-
wise, with much improved profitability. Recent cases have
been the reactive distillation of azeotropic mixtures and the
recovery of krypton and xenon from air in thermally-coupled
distillation towers.
There is a tendency, however, for students in the 1990s to
depend entirely on the simulator, sometimes without under-
standing exactly what it is doing. We urge students to per-
form manually crucial parts of the design study; this may
provide approximate results which serve as initial estimates
for the simulator calculations. Occasionally, especially in
fractionation calculations, the simulations take so long to
converge that manual approximations (such as McCabe-
Thiele plots based on key binaries, or the sketching of
residue-curve maps and simple distillation boundaries) can
rapidly provide useful insight into the problem, permitting
the simulator to achieve more rapid convergence. More of-
ten, the manual procedures increase the students' awareness of
the process details (e.g., whether more distillation trays are
needed above the feed tray or below or where phase changes
are occurring). Once convergence has been achieved, a legiti-
mate use of the simulator is to study the effects of adding trays
at various locations, or of changing the reflux ratios.

Throughout much of their prior course work, the students'
textbooks presented new concepts through examples and
homework exercises, but in the design lecture course we use

individual chapters from several books to present the con-
cepts in the sequence shown in Table 1. Although this helps
accustom students to working with diverse sources of infor-
mation, it does not involve them in the actual gathering of
information from the vast literature.
To address this need, at the beginning of the spring project
course the students learn to access such well-known sources
as the Kirk-Othmer Encyclopedia of Chemical Technology
and the Encyclopedia of Chemical Processing, edited by
McKetta and Cunningham. Even more important, our li-
brarian introduces them to the electronic media and avail-
able data bases, such as the Science Citation Index, the
Engineering Index, and Chemical Abstracts. The students
are given examples of search procedures and are introduced
to sources of assistance in the library system. They also
learn that library resources at other universities can be
searched through electronic mail, and interlibrary loans can
be used to obtain sources that are not available locally. This
relative ease of information access has a major impact on
the quality of the designs.

Since one objective of the course is to introduce students
to some of the profession's requirements, the design report
must be prepared as if it were written for an industrial
supervisor (for transmittal to his superiors) by a junior engi-
neer assigned to study a potential project. The required form
is a typical industrial report, beginning with the letter of
transmittal. The usual sections are required: abstract, intro-
duction, process flowsheet (including a material balance
block), process description, unit descriptions, energy bal-
ance, specification sheets, equipment cost summary, fixed
capital summary, economic analysis, conclusions, and rec-
ommendations. A specific requirement is that the report be
so organized that a conscientious industrial supervisor can
check the design of any particular item of equipment, from
its functions in the unit descriptions to its details in the
specification sheets and its purchase price in the equipment
cost summary to the detailed design calculations (in the
form of Xerox copies of reasonably legible calculation sheets)
in the Appendix.
Preparing the report takes a great deal of time, so we
encourage students to start writing the descriptive portions
while the design computations are still under way. The
report adjudged best in the class is awarded the Molstad
prize (a non-negligible cash award) and is often submitted
for the prestigious Zeisberg Award, administered by the
Delaware Valley Section of the AIChE, in competition with
other area schools.

A lucky junior engineer may get the opportunity to attend
the meeting where his or her work and ideas are presented
to the decision-makers among his or her employers, but it is
Chemical Engineering Education

rare that he or she is required to make the presentation in
person. The experience of making an oral presentation has
been part of the plant-design course at Penn since its incep-
tion. Each team must present its report to an audience of
classmates and as many of the faculty and consultants as
can attend. All team members must participate in the oral
presentation, and each team is allotted about forty minutes
for the presentation, including five or ten minutes for ques-
tions from the audience. To set the appropriate atmosphere,
the students attend in clothes suitable for a business meet-
ing. The presentation covers all the salient factors of the
design, including the pertinent chemistry, design problems
and their solutions, equipment costs, and project economics.
We encourage the use of audio-visual aids, including trans-
parencies and slides, with suitable projectors and, more re-
cently, computer-screen projectors.
The oral presentations are weighted in the student's grade
and in the considerations for the Molstad prize. All faculty
members and consultants present at the sessions contribute
to the evaluations.

The plant design course is regarded, by students and fac-
ulty alike, as the culmination of the seniors' efforts. Since
the BS degree is still considered the professional degree in
engineering, this course is designed and conducted so that
the students use much of what they have learned during
their years of study. With few exceptions, the students will
put more concerted effort into the design, the written report,
and the oral presentation than they have into any other single
event up until that time. It is considered a kind of final
exam, not in a particular course offering but for the whole
chemical engineering undergraduate curriculum. In recogni-
tion of that fact, the department customarily invites the mem-
bers of the graduating class, along with as many of the
faculty and consultants as can be present, to have lunch
together during the midday break in the presentations, to
celebrate the students' success and hard-won maturity.

1. Seider, W.D., "The Process Design Course at Pennsylvania:
Impact of Process Simulators," Chem. Eng. Ed., 18, 26 (1984)
2. Rodrigo, B.F.R., and J.D. Seader, "Synthesis of Separation
Sequences by Ordered Branch Search," AIChE J., 21, 885
3. Sussman, M.V., Availability (Exergy) Analysis: A Self-In-
struction Manual, Milliken House, Massachusetts (1980)
4. Seader, J.D., Thermodynamic Efficiency of Chemical Pro-
cesses, The MIT Press, Cambridge, MA (1982)
5. Linnhoff, B., and J.A. Turner, "Heat Recovery Networks:
New Insights Yield Big Savings," Chem. Eng., 56, Novem-
ber 2 (1981)
6. Target II: User's Guide, Linhoff March Process Integration
Consultants, distributed by the CACHE Corporation, Aus-
tin, TX (1987)
7. Linnhoff, B., and E. Hindmarsh, "The Pinch Design Method
for Heat Exchanger Networks," Chem. Eng. Sci., 38, 745
Spring 1994

Three Symbols
in Search of a Location

Chemical Engineering Department
University of Pittsburgh

Four mathematical symbols (c, o, c, ) recently
visited my office. I was surprised that they would do
this as I had considerable reservations that they might
become lost in the piles of papers, journal articles, and
assorted correspondence that provides a marvelous cam-
ouflage for any horizontal surface. While they were
small, they assured me that they could represent them-
selves quite well and pleaded with me to restore them
to their proper locations in a previous publication.m1
Seeing these symbols so left out in the cold, I had
nothing but great compassion for their needs. I assured
them that I would do all in my power to see that they
would be placed where they belong. This note serves
to fulfill my part of the bargain.
The first symbol belongs on the fourth line from
the bottom of the left-hand column of page 65 follow-
ing the words ". a value of ". The second o
symbol belongs at the end of the first line at the top of
the right-hand column of the same page following the
words, ". this limit is not ". The third o will find
a home at the beginning of line 14 on page 66 follow-
ing ... V ,". The # symbol belongs in the second
line of the answer between the a symbol and the 0
symbol on page 66. I trust that all readers will recog-
nize the suffering these symbols have been asked to
bear and share in my joy in seeing them placed in their
proper locations.

1. Brainard, Alan J., "Beware the Use of an Ideal Gas,"
Chem. Eng. Ed., 28(1), 62 (1994)

Editorial note: We apologize to Professor Brainard
and to any of our readers who may have been confused
by the voids left by the inexplicable disappearance of
the symbols, so good-humoredly identified above. Hav-
ing now cornered the responsible computer culprit we
will endeavor to keep a tighter rein on the little fellas
in the future!

8. Peters, M., and K. Timmerhaus, Plant Design and Econom-
ics for Chemical Engineers, 4th ed., McGraw-Hill (1991)
9. Ulrich, G.D., A Guide to Chemical Engineering Process De-
sign and Economics, John Wiley & Sons (1984)
10. Douglas, J.M., The Conceptual Design of Chemical Pro-
cesses, McGraw-Hill (1988) 0

fl curriculum



to an

Undergraduate Biochemical Engineering Laboratory

Tri-State University
Angola, IN 46703

A although many chemical engineering programs offer
lecture courses covering various topics of biotech
nology, relatively few undergraduate students re-
ceive meaningful laboratory exposure to experimental work
in this important field. One of the major prohibitive factors
in offering this type of educational experience is time. Al-
though some of the pertinent technologies have been incor-
porated into laboratory instruction,131 many of the new bio-
logical methods cannot be adequately introduced and thor-
oughly investigated in a traditional laboratory course format
that consists of, perhaps, one or two three-hour laboratory
sessions per topic. Most fields of study in biotechnology,
such as microbial fermentation or plant and mammalian
tissue cultivation, require experimental durations of up to
one month to obtain meaningful data. In addition, many of
these technologies require extensive training before com-
prehensive investigation can take place.
To rectify this problem, we developed a biochemical en-
gineering laboratory experience that includes long-term ex-
perimental projects in areas of plant cell cultivation, in situ
bioremediation of hazardous wastes, enzymatic cellulose
hydrolysis, and microbial fermentation. The course is dis-
tinctive in its use of single experimental projects (completed
over the duration of one instructional quarter) that demon-
strate many engineering principles related to biotechnology.
The one credit-hour laboratory is offered in conjunction

Copyright ChE Division ofASEE 1994

with a three credit-hour lecture titled, "Fundamentals of
Biochemical Engineering."

Considering the time constraints of a ten-week quarter, it
was immediately evident to those planning the course con-
tents that it would not be feasible to provide student expo-
sure to all available laboratory projects. So we split the
students into four research groups, each comprised of two to
three juniors and seniors, which were then assigned to one
of the available experimental modules for the duration of
the course. Each group was expected to invest a minimum
of ten student-hours per week in its research project. Al-
though the university catalog list the lecture course as 3.0
credit-hours and the laboratory course as 1.0 credit-hour,
the laboratory work actually comprised nearly fifty percent
of the total course effort. The instructor was available for
consultation at "set" laboratory hours and, in addition, each
group was given a room key, thus allowing for project work
at any time of the day.
To assure that all students received essentially the same
educational experience, we formulated common overall
objectives for all the experimental modules. These objec-
tives, split into two groups titled "software" and "hard-
ware," are listed in Tables 1 and 2, respectively. Hardware
objectives refer to tasks completed specifically in the
laboratory facility, whereas software objectives involve
necessary research steps completed outside, but in support
of, laboratory efforts.
We formulated software objectives as a guide for students
through the necessary planning steps of any research en-
deavor, not merely the projects at hand. They began fulfill-
ing these objectives in the library with a list of recom-
mended journal articles and book chapters to read, and
this material provided a foundation for a more compre-
hensive literature search using available on-line and off-
line library data bases. This activity also enabled the stu-
dents to formulate their own experimental objectives as well
Chemical Engineering Education

Brian S. Hooker is Assistant Professor of
Chemical Engineering at Tri-State University.
He received his PhD and MS from Washing-
ton State University and his BS from Califor-
nia State Polytechnic University. His back-
ground and interests are in kinetic analysis
and mathematical modeling of plant tissue
cultivation and bioremediation systems.

... we developed a biochemical engineering laboratory experience that includes long-term experimental
projects in areas of plant cell cultivation, in situ bioremediation of hazardous wastes, enzymatic
cellulose hydrolysis, and microbial fermentation. The course is distinctive in its use of single
experimental projects .. that demonstrate many engineering principles related to biotechnology.

as to set tentative dates for completion. The instructor re-
viewed each group's final objectives before any experimen-
tal design could be initiated.
To assure proper communication, both with the instructor
and within the group, we held weekly project-planning meet-
ings and required that bi-weekly progress reports be com-
pleted by the groups. During the weekly planning meeting,
the group informed the instructor of the previous week's
progress and presented a tentative plan for its upcoming
activities. Bi-weekly written progress reports followed the
same basic format: details of previous results, including
tabular and graphic data with appropriate discussion, along
with a comprehensive plan for the group's efforts over
the next two weeks, including detailed designs of up-
coming experiments. In addition, during the lecture portion
of the course we required the students to explain facets
of their project work as related to concepts studied by
the entire class. This gave all the students some exposure
to each project area.
The end of the quarter culminated in final oral and written
presentations. Written reports had to describe the results
obtained over the entire project, including an overview of
the initial literature search, while oral reports focused on the
group's progress toward planned experimental objectives.

Also, since each group researched a unique topic, the final
oral report had to include a brief demonstration of the stud-
ied technology in order to inform the other students of the
techniques that were used. We asked students who pre-
sented exceptional written and oral reports to participate in
the regional AIChE Student Paper Competition.
Hardware objectives (see Table 2) were formulated to
assure that although each group was involved in a different
subject, all students were exposed to the same basic prin-
ciples of biochemical engineering. These objectives included
training in many facets of sterile technique, along with me-
dia preparation, contamination detection, and organism iden-
tification methods. The students also learned how to per-
form necessary measurements for substrate, biomass, and
product concentration, and all the groups had to complete an
analysis of data gathered through experimental studies in
order to obtain estimates of kinetic parameters and to pre-
dict performance of proposed reactor configurations. The
mathematical modeling and parameter estimations were com-
pleted using SimuSolv* modeling and simulation software.

Using the four experimental modules available for inves-
tigation, we separated laboratory project work into two ar-
eas: preliminary studies and objectives. Preliminary studies,
to be completed within the first three weeks of the course,
are designed to orient students to both literature material
and routine laboratory tasks associated with the subject area.
Project objectives are open-ended experimental tasks which
incorporate training gained from the preliminary studies and
knowledge from biochemical engineering lecture material
as well as prior chemical engineering coursework.

1. Plant Cell Cultivation
This project focuses on batch studies for the measurement
of substrate, biomass, and secondary metabolite concentra-
tions in suspensions ofNicotiana tabacum and Catharanthus
roseus. To provide a literature background for the study,
students read portions of the text Plant Propagation by Tis-
sue Culture[4] as well as a number of pertinent articles giv-
ing an overview of plant cell culture advances,1571 outlining
necessary cultivation and analytical techniques,18-11 and dis-
cussing kinetic modeling in cell culture systems."12 While
completing this literature search, students learn techniques
fundamental to plant tissue cultivation, such as sterile sub-

* Dow Chemical Co., Midland, Michigan

Spring 1994

cultivation, fresh weight and dry weight concentration de-
termination, media preparation, and assays of substrate (su-
crose, glucose, and fructose) and secondary metabolite
(phenolics and indole alkaloids) concentrations. All of these
techniques were previously developed by either the instruc-
tor or chemical engineering students involved in biotechnol-
ogy research at Tri-State University.
After the literature search and preliminary study activities
are completed, the group begins fulfilling the project objec-
tives, starting with the formulation of a GC/MS assay for
ajmalicine concentration determination. This determination
is considered a main objective of the project, rather than a
preliminary study activity, because details of the technique
have not yet been completely developed. After this objec-
tive has been completed, students initiate batch, shake flask
cultures of both cell lines, measuring concentrations of sub-
strate, biomass, and secondary metabolites over the culture
duration. The N. tabacum culture is subsequently scaled up
to a 2-L bioreactor, while students determine the same pa-
rameters as before. All studies are then modeled mathemati-
cally, using simple Monod kinetics for the prediction of all
measured responses. Kinetic parameters are estimated using
SimuSolv, allowing for direct comparison between the two
species studied as well as between the shake flask and bio-
reactor cultures. In addition, students learn the steps of cul-
ture formation by initiating callus culture from seedlings of
Capsicum frutescens.
2. In Situ Bioremediation
This project involves remediation of gasoline components
benzene, ethylbenzene, toluene, and xylene (BTEX) in liq-
uid systems by a pure strain of Pseudomonas stutzeri and a
consortium grown from local vadose zone soil. As a review
of pertinent literature, students read excerpts from Environ-
mental Biotechnology for Waste Treatment,"" as well as
several journal articles covering the use of various biologi-
cal remediation techniques.114 17] Different microbiological
methods necessary for project completion are also re-
viewed.""8 Laboratory preliminary studies consist of learn-
ing compulsory techniques, including preparation of solid
and liquid bacterial culture medium, sterile inoculation of
cultures, bacterial identification methods such as gram stain-
ing, and quantitative assays consisting of viable cell counts
using a hemocytometer and toluene concentration determi-
nation using GC/MS.
Project objectives begin with a series of batch studies
using both P. stutzeri and the "local" microbial consortium
to degrade 500 ppb toluene in a nutrient salt solution under
different redox (aerobic and anaerobic) regimes and agita-
tion levels. This initial test serves as a basis for designing
further experiments to investigate the destruction of BTEX
under optimal conditions. These experiments require that
the group develop purge-and-trap GC/MS assays for all
BTEX components. All batch degradation studies are then

modeled mathematically, using SimuSolv, to obtain esti-
mates for kinetic parameters and to suggest optimal condi-
tions for BTEX destruction.

3. Enzymatic Cellulose Hydrolysis
This project focuses on the hydrolysis of cellulosic sub-
strates using pure cellulase enzyme (a preparation from fun-
gal cultures which produce different types of cellulases) and
sulfuric acid. Literature for this project includes significant
portions of the text Biochemical Engineeringt[81 and a num-
ber of important articles discussing enhanced enzymatic cel-
lulose hydrolysis,'19-22' cellulase production by fungal cul-
ture,123-24] and kinetic modeling of hydrolysis reactions.125-26]
In laboratory preliminary studies, students master sterile
fungal culture techniques using both solid and liquid media.
An enzymatic glucose analysis technique is also demon-
strated for future use in determining hydrolysis product for-
mation. Students then complete a trial hydrolysis experi-
ment using cellobiose (the 3-1,4 dimer of glucose) as a
substrate. Product formation data from this study is fit with
a Michaelis-Menten response curve as estimates are made
for the appropriate kinetic parameters.
The main objective of this study is to compare hydrolysis
rates in long-term (eight-hour) studies using (1) pure
Cellulase* addition, (2) addition of fungal preparation
of T. reesei, and (3) addition of a known concentration
of sulfuric acid. The extent of hydrolysis is experi-
mentally determined by measuring glucose concentration
periodically throughout each study. Hydrolysis rate con-
stants, estimated using the SimuSolv program, are then di-
rectly compared for each method.

4. Microbial Fermentation
This project involves the study of substrate uptake, bio-
mass formation, and product formation in two bacterial spe-
cies, Escherichia coli and Micrococcus luteus. Reference
materials consist of excerpts from both microbiology text-
books and laboratory manuals.127 291 Preliminary studies con-
sist of learning basic techniques such as preparation of solid
and liquid bacterial culture mediums, sterile inoculation
and culture sampling, cell strain identification methods,
and quantitative assays including viable cell counts as well
as glucose and ammonia concentration determinations.
Because of the similarity between the two projects, stu-
dent groups investigating in situ bioremediation and micro-
bial fermentation are allowed to collaborate in completing
preliminary tasks.
The overall objective of this project is to formulate a
reactor configuration to maximize microbial cell density in
the two cell strains studies. Several tasks leading to this
main objective include initiating shake flask and 2-L
bioreactor cultures of either M. luteus or E. coli and moni-

*Sigma Chemical Co., St. Louis, Missouri
Chemical Engineering Education

touring concentrations of glucose, cells, and metabolic prod-
uct (ammonia for M. luteus or pH for E. coli) throughout a
batch culture cycle. In addition, semi-batch cultures of both
cell strains are completed with periodic medium replace-
ment to eliminate toxic waste products from the broth in an
effort to boost cell density. To aid in cell concentration
determination, students also correlate microbial cell counts
to measured optical density. In addition, a portion of the
batch studies is modeled mathematically to determine ki-
netic parameters for the individual tests. Given this informa-
tion, the group then proposes and tests a reactor configura-
tion specifically designed to yield a maximum cell density.

The overall student impression of the laboratory course
format was extremely favorable. A survey taken at the end
of the course yielded a rating of 4.5/5.0 for overall course
evaluation, while laboratory teaching methods were rated at
4.7/5.0. Students specifically enjoyed the freedom afforded
by the project-oriented approach of the course, as they were
directly responsible for planning and scheduling experimen-
tal activities. Several participants chose to continue their
projects through independent study over the next two quar-
ters, and many students showed an interest in the possibility
of a continuation course focusing primarily on laboratory
methods in biotechnology.
Criticism of the course was reserved to two points: first,
because of long hours spent on project tasks, students felt
that the laboratory should qualify for more course credit-
hours, and second, several students did not feel adequately
prepared to initiate laboratory investigation in biotech-
nology. To rectify this concern, in a second offering of
the biochemical engineering laboratory, both faculty and
students from the biology and chemistry departments as-
sisted the participants.

Using a project-oriented approach to biochemical engi-
neering laboratory education proved to be successful in mo-
tivating students to produce quality experimental work. Par-
ticipants were willing to take "ownership" of the investiga-
tions because they were intimately involved in all project
planning and development steps and were able to conduct a
number of experiments in a single research area over an
extended period of time. This approach also stimulated stu-
dents to better integrate previously acquired chemical and
biochemical engineering knowledge into decisions pertinent
to their project objectives. In addition, the quarter-long in-
vestigative projects gave students a more realistic picture of
the research world, and they were able to use research tools
such as on-line and off-line data bases and mathematical
modeling software. By working for extended time periods
in a research group, students received more exposure to
group accountability in completing delegated experimental
Spring 1994

tasks. This type of fundamental change in approach to labo-
ratory education has enhanced the quality of instruction in
biochemical engineering and may be applicable to other
fields of study within the chemical engineering discipline.

I would like to thank Dr. James M. Lee (Washington State
University) and Dr. Michael L. Shuler (Cornell University)
for the respective, generous donations of Nicotiana tabacum
and Catharanthus roseus plant cell suspensions. I also want
to acknowledge Dr. Ira F. Jones (Tri-State University) for
his assistance in developing several GC/MS assays. Partial
support for this project was provided by the National
Science Foundation Instrumentation and Laboratory
Improvement Program. The National Science Foundation
is in no way responsible for or endorses the contents of
this paper. Partial support for this project was also pro-
vided by the Olive B. Cole Foundation. The SimuSolv
modeling and simulation software was donated by the
Dow Chemical Company.

1. Robinson-Piergiovanni, P.S., L.J. Crane, and D.R. Nau,
"Solid Phase Extraction Columns: A Tool for Teaching
Biochromatography," Chem. Eng. Ed., 27, 34 (1993)
2. Lee, W.E., "A Course in Immobilized Enzyme and Cell Tech-
nology," Chem. Eng. Ed., 25, 82 (1991)
3. Ng, T.K., J.F. Gonzalez, and W. Hu, "A Course in Biochemi-
cal Engineering," Chem. Eng. Ed., 22, 202 (1988)
4. George, E.F., and P.D. Sherrington, Plant Propagation by
Tissue Culture, Exergetics Ltd., Hants., England (1984)
5. Constabel, F., "Principles Underlying the Use of Plant Cell
Fermentation for Secondary Metabolite Production,"
Biochem. Cell. Biol., 66, 658 (1988)
6. Sahai, 0., and M. Knuth, "Commercializing Plant Tissue
Culture Processes: Economics, Problems, and Prospects,"
Biotech. Progress, 1, 1 (1985)
7. Shuler, M.L., "Production of Secondary Metabolites from
Plant Tissue Culture: Problems and Prospects," Ann. N.Y.
Acad. Sci., 369, 65 (1981)
8. Asada, M., and M.L. Shuler, "Stimulation of Ajmalicine
Production and Excretion from Catharanthus roseus: Ef-
fects of Adsorption in situ, Elicitors, and Alginate Immobi-
lization," Appl. Microbiol. Biotechnol., 30, 475 (1989)
9. Hooker, B.S., J.M. Lee, and G. An, "Cultivation of Plant
Cells in a Stirred Vessel: Effect of Impeller Design,"
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10. Lee, S.L., K.D. Cheng, and A.L. Scott, "Effect of Bioregulators
on Indole Alkaloids Biosynthesis in Catharanthus roseus
Cell Culture," Phytochem., 20, 1841 (1981)
11. Linsmaier, E.M., and F. Skoog, "Organic Growth Factor
Requirements of Tobacco Tissue Cultures," Physiol. Plant.,
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tured Model to Tobacco Cell Cultures," Biotechnol. Bioeng.,
39, 765 (1992)
13. Sayler, G.S., Ed., Environmental Biotechnology for Waste
Treatment, Plenum Press, New York, NY (1991)
14. Madsen, E.L., J.L. Sinclair, and W.C. Ghiorse, "In Situ
Biodegradation: Microbiological Patterns in a Contaminated
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15. Song H., X. Wang, and R. Bartha, "Bioremediation Poten-

tial of Terrestrial Fuel Spills," Appl. Environ. Micro., 56,
16. Speitel, G.E., and E.R. Alley, "Bioremediation of Unsatur-
ated Soils Contaminated with Chlorinated Solvents," J. Haz-
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17. Ziegenfuss, P.S., and R.T. Williams, "Hazardous Materials
Composting," J. Hazard. Materials, 28, 91 (1991)
18. Lee, J.M., Biochemical Engineering, Prentice Hall,
Englewood Cliffs, NJ (1992)
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lulosic Substance in an Attrition Bioreactor," Biotech. Bioeng.
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20. Jones, E.O., and J.M. Lee, "Kinetic Analysis of Bioconver-
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r. M book review

by Louis Theodore, Joseph P. Reynolds,
and Francis B. Taylor
John Wiley & Sons, New York, NY 10158-0012;
478' pages, $65.95 (1989)

Reviewed by
Robert M. Bethea
Texas Tech University

Although the authors state that this book is "intended
primarily for regulatory officials, company administrators,
(practicing) engineers, industry maintenance personnel,
and both undergraduates and first-year graduate students,"
I believe that it is much better suited as a reference than as
a text for chemical engineering students. The primary ob-
jective of the book is to provide a diverse audience with
a broad overview of the scope and interrelations of the
parts and functions of accident and emergency manage-
ment programs. The authors have been successful in
meeting this objective.
The book is divided into thirteen chapters, each with ref-
erences, a summary, and problems for discussion or home-
work (or term papers!). The chapters are divided into four
parts: an overview of accident an emergency managements
(Part I, 76 pages), process and plant accidents (Part II, 181
pages), dispersion (Part III, 142 pages), and hazard and risk
assessment (Part IV, 79 pages). The index is reasonably
detailed and is easy to use.

Chapter 1, "Past History," presents brief descriptions
of early and recent major accidents (Flixborough,
Three Mile Island, Chernobyl, Bhopal, etc.) to illustrate
the scope and breadth of emergencies for which the reader
may need to plan.
Chapter 2, "Legislation," discusses significant Federal
laws regarding air and water pollution and hazardous
and toxic wastes.
Chapter 3, "Emergency Planning and Response," is a con-
tinuation of Chapter 2. It presents brief descriptions and lists
some of the items to be considered in the various stages of
the development and implementation of emergency response
plans. I have used this material as part of a graduate course
on chemical process safety for practicing chemical and en-
vironmental engineers and safety professionals.
Chapter 4, "Process Fundamentals and Plant Equipment,"
contains elementary and descriptive material (remember the
intended audience) from stoichiometry, thermodynamics, unit
operations, and design. This chapter is designed to familiar-
ize the non-chemical engineer with terminology, equipment,
processes, and concepts used in examples in Part III.
Chapter 5, "Fires, Explosions, and Other Accidents," pre-
sents an overview of fire fundamentals, types, and sources
with some physical property data. Appropriate calculation
procedures are presented. (Caution: the f, in Eqs. 5.2.1 and
5.2.2 are not correctly defined; they must be on an air/
oxygen-free basis, i.e., a combustibles-only basis.) The sec-
tions on fire hazards, and especially on fire prevention and
protection, are altogether too brief. The section on explo-
sion fundamentals is overly short and will require consider-
Chemical Engineering Education

able supplementation when it is incorporated into chemical
engineering course work. The entire realm of toxicology
and industrial hygiene has been compressed into three pages
which do not refer to the OSHA or EPA standards.
Chapter 6, "Accident Prevention in Process Facilities,"
focuses on methods of preventing and reducing the fre-
quency and severity of accidents, with primary emphasis on
the chemical process industry. It begins with an excellent
discussion of the general causes of accidents and proceeds
to common specific causes associated with process equip-
ment. This chapter should be required reading for unit op-
erations, process control, and process/plant design courses.
The material on relief selection and sizing must be expanded
before use. It should be noted that the relief-sizing equations
on page 202 are not general; they are only valid for conven-
tional spring-operated reliefs in gas or vapor service.
After reading the material in Chapter 6 on the use of fault
trees and HAZOPs, the major difficulty in using this book
as a text became obvious. There are no worked examples
until you reach Chapter 10.
Chapter 7, "Process Applications," contains very good
discussions of five highly toxic and reactive chemicals, each
of which can serve as a case study in the techniques of
evaluating candidate/alternative processing routes in plant
design courses. Each section (e.g., ammonia) contains physi-
cal property data, the exposure limits and human health
effects, manufacturing methods, uses of the chemical, and
near-catastrophic incidents involving the compound.
Chapter 8, "Dispersion," begins with the development
of the dispersion equations involved with momentum, en-
ergy, and mass transfer. Classic analytic solutions are
given for the PDEs as they would be in any course in
transport phenomena.
Chapter 9, "Dispersion Calculations," applies the theoreti-
cal equations developed in Chapter 8 to dispersions in water
and soil, with primary emphasis on the airborne dispersion
of continuous (e.g, stack) and instantaneous/puff (e.g., leaks,
Spring 1994

spills) sources. Factors affecting dispersion in air (meteoro-
logic, effective stack height) are very clearly presented with
standard empirical equations. The Pasquill-Gifford approach
is clearly presented in adequate detail. The reader will find
Figure 9.7.4 especially useful when estimating the location
of maximum ground-level concentrations from contin-
uous sources. This chapter also contains very useful infor-
mation on the effects of aerodynamic downwash and the
presence of multiple stacks not usually found outside gradu-
ate-level air-pollution texts.
In Chapter 10, "Dispersion Applications," the information
in Chapter 9 is expanded in terms of various computer mod-
els developed by government (EPA), industry (CMA), and
individual companies. These presentations are quite good
and describe the limitations, characteristics, input param-
eters, assumptions, and typical applications of the models.
Specific examples are provided for spills on water and soils
and for plume rise, continuous and instantaneous point
source calculations to match the developments in Chapter 9.
The inclusion of particulate deposition calculations is a
real "plus," as are those for line and area sources. The ex-
amples in this chapter all illustrate the types of calculations
needed for emergencies.
Chapter 11, "Hazard and Risk Assessment Fundamen-
tals," is mis-named. It is really a crash course in elementary
statistics: probabilities, empirical distribution functions, ex-
pected values, and descriptive statistics (means and vari-
ances of samples).
Chapter 12, "Hazard and Risk Assessment Calculations,"
introduces the concepts of reliability and failure rates. The
use of a few theoretical (standard normal, log-normal, bino-
mial, Poisson) distributions are included, as are some fault
tree and event tree examples.
Chapter 13, "Hazard and Risk Assessment Applications,"
is illustrated with six examples, including a runaway reac-
tion and dispersion of a toxic chemical from a single point-
source release. All these examples, as are the ones in Chap-
ters 9 and 10, are presented in a realistic style. O

[ teaching




University of Minnesota Minneapolis, MN 55455

Composedfor the William Resnick Memorial Issue of the I.I.Ch.E. Journal (Vol. 22, April 1993; reprinted here, in
part, with permission), this article not only does honor to Bill Resnick, who died suddenly in April 1992, but it also
describes the vision and something of the reality of team teaching undergraduate chemical engineers at Minnesota
since the 1960s. How that teaching has impacted undergraduate and graduate education, faculty development, re-
search collaboration, and department ambience may be of interest to others in engineering education.

ill Resnick, an American chemical engineer who
was the first department chairman at the Technion
(Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa), spent the
1965-66 academic year as a Visiting Professor at Minne-
sota. He was drawn there by the vigorously fermenting
brew of teaching-and-research in a department that was
perceived more and more widely as taking the lead in chemi-
cal engineering. One of the attractions, he averred at the
time, was the vision of team teaching, and the way the
Minneapolis department's diverse band of professors was
making the vision a reality.
That vision was an outgrowth of another-it had no clear
beginnings, but a crucial stimulus was Neal Amundson's
1954-55 sabbatical in the new chemical engineering de-
partment at Cambridge University in England. There, the
industry-seasoned Mr. Fox was melding an assortment of
relatively young mechanical engineers, physical chemists, a
surface chemist, and the odd engineer into a lively whole.
(That was 'The Chiefs' first and only sabbatical from the
Minnesota department since 1949, the year he was named
Acting Head at thirty-three years of age.) Amundson, him-
self a chemical engineer who had taken his PhD in math-

Copyright ChE Division ofASEE 1994

ematics, envisioned a similar broadening of the intellectual
base and vitalizing teaching and research back home at Min-
Within a few years he attracted a half-dozen talented people
to the faculty, most of them young, all of them inspired by
the vision:
> A microbiologist, Henry Tsuchiya (1956): " reinforce
the tradition of intimate cooperation with other disciplines
(for strong connections with bacteriology, as well as with
mathematics and chemistry, had existed since the 1920s)"
> A creative chemical engineer who had been in a mechanical
engineering setting, Bill Ranz (1958)
> A unique hybrid of mathematician, physicist, engineer, and
scholar whom Amundson had met deep in Imperial Chemical
Industries in England, and with whom he later often teamed,
Gus (Rutherford) Aris (1958)
- A non-Newtonian chemical engineer from the Bird school,
who was soon to turn biochemical engineer and partner of
Tsuchiya, Arnie Fredrickson (1959)
- A theoretical chemist of the Hirschfelder school and of the
highest intellectual standards, who had been a postdoctoral
fellow in The Netherlands, John Dahler (1959)
- A chemical engineer who had developed his fluid mechani-
cal and interfacial proclivities working in the Shell Develop-
ment Company, Skip Scriven (1959)
The later-comers helped attract each other, and the whole
group fell into a resonance of shared goals, standards, and
friendship that stimulated all of them, including the few
older members of the department. That resonance was a
strong attractant when the following openings were filled a
few years later:
- A fire-eating chemical physicist, experimental and theoretical,
who came from a postdoc in Belgium, Ted Davis (1963)
Chemical Engineering Education

L. E. "Skip" Scriven is Regents' Professor of
Chemical Engineering and Materials Science at
the University of Minnesota. He received his BS
at the University of California, Berkeley, in 1952,
and his PhD at the University of Delaware in
1956, both in chemical engineering. He has
served as editor or associate editor for several
major journals and book companies and as a
member on several national committees setting
priorities for chemical engineering and materi-
als science.

SA hybrid chemical/nuclear/biochemical engineer, liberally
educated and Navy-seasoned, Ken Keller (1964)
A physical organic chemist and chemical kineticist, a NIH
Postdoctoral Fellow at Harvard, Bob Carr (1965)
A physical chemist and surface physicist, a Research
Associate at Chicago, Lanny Schmidt (1965)
Amundson was affectionately called the "Chief," and the
rest of the band was occasionally referred to as his "Fron-
tiersmen." All of them found irresistible the reality that had
sprung from Amundson's original vision. But there was a
further vision, one of unanticipatedly greater power in melt-
ing all the talent together and casting a coherent whole. That
was the vision of teaching as a team.
A system of teaching the core undergraduate courses had
long been in place-a system consisting of heavy problem-
solving and relatively small problem-working sessions. In
the section meetings, which alternated with lectures or labs,
junior faculty and instructors had been working assigned
problems and grilling students in a manner not uncommon
in engineering instruction of that time. But apart from as-
signed problems, there was little coordination of section
meetings with lectures.
Another significant feature was also in place: a policy
(fostered by Amundson) that there would be no stand-up
teaching in lectures or in recitations (or in laboratories, for
that matter) by graduate students (save for the one or
two advanced doctoral candidates appointed as instructors).
Consequently, each course was taught only once each
year, with lectures three days a week and with the class split
up into smaller problem sections for three more days each
week (yes-the academic week at Minnesota was six
days long at that time; Bill Resnick may have helped cel-
ebrate the end of that).
Bill Ranz recognized the potential for innovation in this
system as well as the potential of the new faculty arriving
with him. With Amundson egging him on, and with the new
recruits and most of the older hands enthusiastically joining
in, he took the lead in transforming what already existed
into a team-teaching scheme. Its practice was some six years
old when Resnick joined it in 1965.
What is the scheme? Can it be transplanted?

Chemical engineering classes of sixty to ninety students
(fewer, long ago; more in most years now) are taught by
teams of four faculty. In lecture courses, one professor is the
lecturer and coordinator (responsible for lecturing, setting
assigned problems and examinations, and coordinating the
graduate teaching assistants who critique and grade student
assignments). The lecturer also prepares recitation plans-
outlines of lecture-related items, features of assigned and
other problems to present and discuss with students (or to
quiz them on) in section meetings. Each section, 15-25 strong,
Spring 1994

is headed up by a recitation leader-a professor, an instruc-
tor (a selected postdoctoral or advanced doctoral student), a
visiting professor, or (in certain design, control, and labora-
tory courses) an adjunct professor.
The recitation leaders (and, if encouraged strongly enough,
the graduate teaching assistants) attend the lectures. This is
the heart of the innovation, and it violates a not-uncommon
taboo against one professor sitting in on another professor's
class. There are four faculty members at every lecture: one
standing up front and three sitting in the back. If the lecturer
is, say, a second-year assistant professor and the recitation
leader is a grizzled full professor, the former is the teacher
and the latter a student taking notes, jotting down ideas for
recitation. Outside of class they discuss the lectures, recita-
tions, problems, examinations, progress, and difficulties of
students and grading. Everyone, including the teaching as-
sistants, is actively involved.
With an audience as described above, a sloppy lecture is
as rare as a May frost, or a January thaw, in Minnesota;
a rare and embarrassing event not likely soon to be re-
peated. Standards are elevated-to the advantage of
students. There is no uncertainty about classroom perfor-
mance, nor is there any lack of constructive criticism and
encouragement. Teaching is taken very seriously. Crafting
lectures is arduous work, compounded by the demands of
designing lesson plans and the rest. But the benefits for
everyone concerned are fine.
The recitation leaders get the recitation plan a day in
advance, and a couple of hours spent in preparation the
night before is usually sufficient. Not infrequently they find
themselves picking up the phone to straighten out some
item with the other team members. An inexperienced new-
comer may be given a late section in order to have the
option of sitting in on some other section earlier the same
day. In class the recitation leaders engage students in an
intensive way not possible in lecture, and they come to
know the students well. Year-in and year-out, most students
have said that they especially appreciate the recitation and
laboratory sections.
There is another central feature to this system: a faculty
member has to have been a recitation leader in a course
before she or he can lecture in that course. That means the
lecturer has been immersed (if not submerged) in a com-
plete course designed by a predecessor. He or she may then
redesign it, but with full knowledge of what has been done
before. So course content tends to evolve and improve, again
to the great benefit of the students.
And the last central feature: a faculty member has to leave
a core course after lecturing in it for three successive years,
or at most four. The first year is one of tailoring or revamp-
ing the course-and getting feedback; the second year is
one of polishing the new version; the third year is likely to
be one of coasting a bit. Then it's time to move on to another

of the core courses. Thus, in time every professor diversifies
as a lecturer into many of the core courses: stoichiometry
and balances, fluid mechanics, thermodynamics, heat and
mass transfer, separation processes, reaction engineering,
control, and design.
The unit-operations-type laboratories are also team-taught,
with sections of fifteen students divided into three-member
groups. There is a professor present and in charge of each
section, assisted by a graduate student, while one pro-
fessor coordinates the whole course and chairs the weekly
bag-lunch meeting of the entire team. In this way, almost
every professor gains experience with the laboratory
courses. As in the recitation section, the rotation time is
likely to be just one or two years, not the longer cycle of
those in charge of courses.
These features, taken together, result in faculty that know
much of the curriculum intimately. If a professor is, for
some reason, out of touch with the current version of a
course, within a few years he or she can be back in very
close touch. Everyone is well-informed and capable of inte-
grating and evolving the curriculum over the long run, and
for counseling undergraduate advises term-by-term (actu-
ally quarter-by-quarter at Minnesota).

For Undergraduate Students Through the recitations
and the similarly sectioned laboratories, students and fac-
ulty are put into closer contact. There is more effective
transmission of what is taught that is not in any syllabus: the
attitudes and standards, the patterns of thought about subject
matter; the approaches to study, experimentation, and prob-
lem solving; the skills and styles of communicating-in
short, the framework of the discipline and of the profession.
As crucial as these factors are to engineering curricula, they
are hard to define and even harder to measure, and so they
go unexamined in evaluations. They are also hard for under-
graduates to appreciate until later in their careers.
There are additional advantages for the students. Profes-
sors broaden and freshen by rotating through the core courses
and the yearly reconstituted teaching teams. Heightened in-
terest and enthusiasm of faculty and teaching assistants brings
higher standards of teaching; the courses are well organized,
with carefully selected coverage, quality lecturing, effective
recitation and laboratory instruction, and automatic teaching
and course evaluation. Courses evolve by a kind of natural
selection at the hands of successive, overlapping teaching
teams, some of which include adjunct professors from in-
dustry. Overcramming a course with material has to be
guarded against, but a faculty that is collectively well-in-
formed about the details of all the courses is enviably
equipped to coordinate courses and integrate the curricu-
lum. The capstone in chemical engineering is the senior
course in process synthesis and design. Notwithstanding

discussions that go back to Bill Resnick's stay and earlier,
the potential for making that course the integrating kernel
have barely been tapped.
For Graduate Students As part of their education, gradu-
ate students assist in one ten-week course each year after the
first year. Fuller involvement than mere grading is an excel-
lent means of reviewing course material and rectifying defi-
ciencies, an advantage widely recognized by PhD aspir-
ants-and their advisors. A disadvantage of the team-
teaching scheme is that opportunities for stand-up teaching
are lost-though this is more than offset by the advantage
to undergraduate students of faculty teaching of recita-
tion and laboratory sections. But graduate students are able
to begin as assistants on the floor of laboratory courses,
in office-hour tutorials of lecture courses, and in men-
toring undergraduate research participants. The most
promising of those interested in academic careers can also
qualify as instructors.
For Faculty It is comparatively easy to take up a new
course by attending lectures and preparing for and leading
recitations-all the while learning or re-learning the mate-
rial and reflecting on alternatives and improvements (not
only in the course but also in its relation to other courses).
New faculty, not having apprenticed as recitation leaders,
cannot lecture in core courses during their first year when
they are occupied with establishing research programs and,
often, an elective course in their specialty. But through reci-
tation and laboratory assignments they are exposed to role
models, standards and values, and the camaraderie of shared
teaching. Rotation through the courses affords opportunities
to change over without undue effort, and thereby to master
the entire core curriculum. A professor with primary re-
sponsibility for a postgraduate course in a given semester or
quarter can retain a small active role in the undergraduate
program by handling a recitation or laboratory section.
More significantly, professors who lack background in a
particular area or, indeed, in the discipline of chemical engi-
neering itself, gain an education through teaching. Bill
Resnick witnessed a micro-biologist, physical chemists and
chemical physicists, a physical organic chemist, a mathema-
tician/physicist/engineer, and so on in various stages of this
process. It is the way to weld into a lively whole a type of
faculty particularly well suited to orient students toward a
future in chemical engineering, where modern developments
in chemistry, molecular biology, computer science, materi-
als science, and related fields will continue to be applied. A
by-product is a milieu in which instructors, postdoctoral
fellows, and visiting professors from other fields (physical
chemistry, applied mathematics, physics, mechanical engi-
neering) have prepared for academic and industrial careers
in chemical engineering.
A carry-over of the scheme is its permeation, scaled down,
into some jointly taught elective courses and postgraduate
Chemical Engineering Education

courses-notably in the polymer and biochemical-biomedi-
cal engineering areas.
The most profound outcomes of all emerged over more
than a decade. First was the subtle stimulation of research;
then came fresh research collaborations by many of the
faculty; then an exceptional atmosphere of research
cooperation and collaboration. The combinations and
recombinations of joint authors testify to this. So do
graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, industrial fellows,
and visiting and permanent faculty who have been at-
tracted to it. The taproot of much of the exceptional re-
search, and teaching of research, that ultimately emerged is
clearly in the shared experiences, the special resonance, of
undergraduate team teaching.


Team teaching by faculty entails greater costs than doing
without recitations and relying on graduate-student teach-
ers. The costs can be met by money from the institution to
enlarge the faculty, or by subtle diversions of research fund-
ing to the same end, or by time from professors to discharge
heavier responsibilities. Since Bill Resnick's stay, there has
been a shift from the former to the last, with two results.
One is that incremental costs are borne by professors, by
sacrificing their recreational time and, all too often, their
time with their families. The other is that the team-teaching
scheme has been eroded by compromises, most noticeably
through larger recitation sections, overcrowded laboratory
sections, a greater number of graduate students appointed as
Instructors, addition of senior faculty inexperienced in the
scheme, and even temporary abandonment of recitation sec-
tions in a core course.
When institutional funding was less straitened, enrollments
were lower, and commitment to the scheme was undiluted,
the class-teaching load of regular faculty in the Minnesota
department was structured as follows:
either be in charge of a core course;
or in charge of two of the following: a graduate course, an
undergraduate elective course, a recitation section, a labora-
tory section;
or just one of those, one quarter out of three each year.

Resnick's load was a bit heavier in 1965 when he taught the
graduate thermodynamics course for two quarters in addi-
tion to participating in teaching teams all year. That was an
era of graduate fellowships and traineeships, more funding
for post-doctorates and visiting professorships, and other
sources that could be drawn upon to support team teaching.
The scene has, of course, changed. Institutional accounting
of faculty time and allocation of available resources have
made it much tougher to convince those in authority to
invest in a single department's special programs in instruc-
tional effectiveness and faculty development.

The question is why something approximating the whole
scheme has not sprung up elsewhere. To be sure, many parts
of it exist in many places, and they did so long before the
total innovation got under way in Minnesota in the mid-
1950s. It would appear that a number of circumstances are
probably all necessary:
A sizeable group of young faculty, each inclined toward
working together, teaching well, and broadening and
deepening his or her mastery of the subjects in the
Effective leadership of the department and the core
curriculum, coupled with a clear vision of the principles of
the scheme.
Older faculty with a compatible tradition, or at least with
the self-confidence, flexibility, and talent to enter into a
team-teaching scheme wholeheartedly.
Some surplus of departmental resources and some
commitment of faculty time to invest for the long term,.
The biggest payoff of the team-teaching scheme comes over
the long term. It brings unique opportunities to strengthen
teaching and curriculum, followed by the integration of
teaching and research, and then research itself, especially co-
operative and collaborative research within the department-
that is, to strengthen ultimately the whole enterprise.
A great impediment for most institutions seems to be
a taboo against one professor sitting in on another pro-
fessor's class. Another seems to be a reflexively negative
response of entrenched faculty to the prospect of pre-
paring new courses, and still another impediment is univer-
sity accounting of apparent costs-headcount-based mea-
sures (i.e., apparent cost per student), lack of measures of
benefits and effectiveness, and the common practice of us-
ing obtuse comparisons with other departments as the basis
for budget decisions.

At the 1981 Annual Meeting of the American Institute of
Chemical Engineers, I described the fruitful innovation of
team teaching. Since that event I wanted to ask Bill, the
consummate professor and indefatigable traveler, for his
answer to the transplantation question. But we always met
on short notice or in busy situations: a conference he orga-
nized in Arad, a one-day whirlwind tour together of much of
Israel, a dinner given by chemical engineers in Santa Fe
(Argentina), a hallway of an AIChE meeting, a review of
the department at Ben Gurion University. The last was sev-
eral December days in 1988 spent together focusing in-
tensely on the inseparable teaching-and-research of an ad-
mirably dedicated faculty in our discipline. It reflected beau-
tifully the activities and discussions of the 1965-66 aca-
demic year in Minneapolis. Bill is a friend and kindred
spirit. How I would like the pleasure of catching up with
him again, as usual, in some unpredictable place! O

Spring 1994

Random Thoughts...



North Carolina State University Raleigh, NC 27695

Most of us on college faculties learn our craft by
trial-and-error. We start teaching and doing re
search, make lots of mistakes, learn from some of
them, teach some more and do more research, make more
mistakes and learn from them, and gradually more or less
figure out what we're doing.
While there's something to be said for purely experiential
learning, it's not very efficient. Sometimes small changes in
the ways we do things can yield large benefits. We may
eventually come up with the changes ourselves, but it could
help both us and our students immeasurably if someone
were to suggest them early in our careers. For whatever they
may be worth to you, here are some suggestions I wish
someone had given me.

> Find one or more research mentors and one or
more teaching mentors, and work closely with them
for at least two years. Most faculties have professors
who excel at research or teaching or both and are willing
to share their expertise with junior colleagues, but the
prevailing culture does not usually encourage such ex-
changes. Find out who these individuals are and take
advantage of what they have to offer, if possible through
collaborative research and mutual classroom observa-
tion or team-teaching.
- Find research collaborators who are strong in the
areas in which you are weakest. If your strength is
theory, undertake some joint research with a good
experimentalist, and conversely. If you're a chemical
engineer, find compatible colleagues in chemistry or
biochemistry or mathematics or statistics or mater-
ials science. You'll turn out better research in the short
run, and you'll become a better researcher in the long
run by seeing how others work and learning some
of what they know.
- When you write a paper or proposal, beg or bribe
colleagues to read it and give you the toughest
critique they're willing to give. Then revise, and if
Copyright ChE Division ofASEE 1994

the revisions were major, run the manuscript by
them again to make sure you got it right. Then send it
off. Wonderful things may start happening to your
acceptance rates.

- When a paper or proposal of yours is rejected,
don't take it as a reflection on your competence or
your worth as a human being. Above all, don't give
up. Take a few minutes to sulk or swear at those obtuse
idiots who clearly missed the point of what you wrote,
then revise the manuscript, doing your best to under-
stand and accommodate their criticisms and suggestions.
If the rejection left the door open a crack, send the
revision back with a cover letter summarizing how you
adopted the reviewers' suggestions and stating, respect-
fully, why you couldn't go along with the ones you didn't
adopt. The journal or funding agency will usually send
the revision back to the same reviewers, who will often
recommend acceptance if they believe you took their
comments seriously and if your response doesn't offend
them. If the rejection slammed the door, send the revi-
sion to another journal (perhaps a less prestigious one)
or funding agency.

> Learn to identify the students in your classes, and
greet them by name when you see them in the hall.
Doing just this will cover a multitude of sins you may
commit in class. Even if you have a class of over 100
students, you can do it-use seating charts, labeled pho-
tographs, whatever it takes. You'll be well compensated
for the time and effort you expend by the respect and
effort you'll get back from them.

- When you're teaching a class, try to give the stu-
dents something active to do at least every twenty
minutes. For example, have them work in small groups
to answer a question or solve a problem or think of their
own questions about the material you just covered.* In
long class periods (seventy-five minutes and up), let
* Many other ideas for active learning exercises are given in
references 1 and 2.
Chemical Engineering Education

them get up and stretch for a minute.
Even if you're a real spellbinder, after approximately
ten minutes of straight lecturing you begin to lose some
of your students-they get drowsy or bored or restless,
and start reading or talking or daydreaming. The longer
you lecture, the more of them you lose. Forcing them to
be active, even if it's only for thirty seconds, breaks the
pattern and gets them back with you for another ten or
twenty minutes.

- After you finish making up an exam, even if you
KNOW it's straightforward and error-free, work it
through completely from scratch and note how long
it takes you to do it, and get your TAs to do the
same if you have TAs. Then go back and (1) get rid of
the inevitable bugs and busywork, (2) make sure most of
the test covers basic skills and no more than 10-15%
serves to separate the As from the Bs, and (3) cut down
the test so that the students have at least three times
longer to work it out than it took you to do it.

> Grade tough on homework, easier on time-bound
tests. Frequently it happens in reverse; almost any-
thing goes on the homework, which causes the students
to get sloppy, and then they get clobbered on tests for
making the same careless errors they got away with
on the homework. This is pedagogically unsound, not
to mention unfair.

> When someone asks you to do something you're not
sure you want to do-serve on a committee or chair
one, attend a meeting you're not obligated to at-
tend, join an organization, run for an office, orga-
nize a conference, etc.-don't respond immediately,
but tell the requester that you need time to think
about it and you'll get back to him or her. Then, if
you decide that you really don't want to do it, con-
sider politely but firmly declining. You need to take
on some of these tasks occasionally-service is part of
your professorial obligation-but no law says you have
to do everything anyone asks you to do.*

> Create some private space for yourself and retreat
to it on a regular basis. Pick a three-hour slot once or
twice a week when you don't have class or office hours
and go elsewhere-stay home, for example, or take your
laptop to the library, or sneak into the empty office of
your colleague who's on sabbatical.
It's tough to do serious writing or thinking if you're
interrupted every five minutes, which is what happens in
your office. Some people with iron wills can put a "Do
* If your department head or dean is the one doing the asking,
however, it's advisable to have a good reason for saying no.
Spring 1994

not disturb!" sign outside their office door, let their sec-
retaries or voice mail take their calls, and Just Do It. If
you're not one of them, your only alternative is to get
out of the office. Do it regularly and watch your produc-
tivity rise.

> Do your own composing on a word processor in-
stead of relying on a secretary to do all the typing
and correcting. If you're a lousy typist, have the sec-
retary type your first draft, but at least do all the revising
and correcting yourself.
Getting the secretary to do everything means waiting
for your job to reach the top of the pile on his desk,
waiting again when your job is put on hold in favor of
shorter and more urgent tasks, waiting yet again for the
corrections on the last version to be made, and so on as
the weeks roll merrily by. If a job is really important to
you, do it yourself! It will then get done on your time
schedule, not someone else's.

> Get copies of McKeachie1'l and Wankat and
Oreovicz.121 Keep one within easy reach in your office
at school and the other in your home office or bathroom.
You can open either book to any page and get useful
pointers or answers to troubling questions, and you'll
also get research backing for the suggestions presented.

- When problems arise that have serious impli-
cations-academic misconduct, for example, or
a student or colleague with an apparent psycho-
logical problem, or anything that could lead to
litigation or violence-don't try to solve them on
your own. The consequences of making mistakes
could be disastrous.
There are professionals at every university (academic
advisors, trained counselors, attorneys) with the knowl-
edge and experience needed to deal with almost every
conceivable situation. Find out who they are, and bring
them in to either help you deal with the problem or
handle it themselves.

That's enough for starters. If you feel moved to try any of
these suggestions, I'd be grateful if you let me know what
happens and if you've been on a faculty for a year or
more, I invite you to send me some additional ideas-tips
you wish someone had given you when you were starting
out. When I get enough of them I'll put them in another
column with appropriate attribution.

1. McKeachie, W.J., Teaching Tips: A Guidebook for the Be-
ginning College Teacher, 8th ed., D.C. Heath & Co., Lexing-
ton, MA (1986)
2. Wankat, P.C., and F.S. Oreovicz, Teaching Engineering,
McGraw-Hill, New York, NY (1993) n

aL classroom






Iowa State University
Ames, IA 50011-2230

Graphical methods have long played a role in the
teaching of separations processes. The classic pa
pers of Ponchon,[] Savarit,[2] and McCabe and
Thiele[3] described graphical techniques for staged-distilla-
tion design that remain in use today more than half a cen-
tury after their creation. Similar procedures are employed
for absorption and extraction and for a number of the less
frequently encountered processes.
While such methods are useful pedagogically and their
results more rapidly assimilated than those from numeri-
cally solved processes, they are also tedious, time-consum-
ing, and require no small amount of drafting skill. Cumula-
tive errors due to poorly constructed lines, missed intersec-
tions, and inaccurate interpolations can alter a drawing and
mask the trends one wishes to show. Moreover, parametric
cases are almost impossible to construct in any reasonable
period of time. Thus the benefits of these visualized designs
are too often overshadowed by the difficulties involved
in producing them.
Several workers in recent years have used the computer to
eliminate the tedium and inaccuracy of manual graphic de-
sign. Gaskill[41 used an analog-logic computer in rep-op
mode to produce McCabe-Thiele displays for systems at
constant relative volatility. His examples showed variations
in all of the usual operating parameters as well as misplace-
ment of the feed tray. Calo and Andres[5] employed Smoker's
method for constant-a distillations having both multiple feeds
and multiple side-draws. Their program was interactive and
yielded expandable McCabe-Thiele plots on a storage CRT.
Working in Comell University's Computer-Aided Design
and Instructional Facility, Golnaraghi et al.[6] used vector-
refresh graphics to produce McCabe-Thiele diagrams on an
Copyright ChE Division ofASEE 1994

Evans and Sutherland Multipicture System. Their scheme
provided for rapid data input and recomputation of para-
metric cases through a stylus-tablet arrangement. More re-
cently, Kooijman and Taylor[7] have used graphics to ac-
company their ChemSep program, and Fogler and Mont-
gomery[81 have created a variety of separations modules
with associated visuals.
At Iowa State we have developed a method that applies
computer graphics to the three major separations procedures
and to several process types within each. Using the
FLOWTRAN simulator[9] to solve the balance and thermo-
dynamic equations for each operation, we have written pre-
and post-processing software to simplify data entry and to

Kenneth R. Jolls has undergraduate degrees
from Duke and North Carolina State Universities
and graduate degrees from the University of Illi-
nois. His specialties include applied electronic
instrumentation, thermodynamics, and computer
visualization in chemical engineering research
and practice. He was formerly on the faculty at
the Polytechnic Institute of Brooklyn and has had
sabbatical leaves at U.C. Berkeley and at Cornell.

Michelle Nelson (now Fendrich) received her
BS and MS degrees in chemical engineering
from Iowa State University. She is employed as
a thermal engineer at Commonwealth Edison's
nuclear power plant at Morris, Illinois, where
she is currently working on heat-rate improve-

Deepak Lumba is a Senior Project Engineer in
the Applications Research and Development
Group of Praxair, Inc., Tarrytown, New York. He
is presently developing new applications for in-
dustrial gases in the chemical industry. He holds
a BTech in chemical engineering from the Indian
Institute of Technology, Kharagpur, India, and
the MS and PhD degrees from Iowa State Uni-

Chemical Engineering Education

display the numerical results of the simulations in a variety
of standard formats. For single-solute absorption and strip-
ping, for extraction with and without reflux, and for several
configurations of binary distillation, our program allows
for interactive building of input files, execution of
the FLOWTRAN runs, and display of the computed results
using medium-resolution color-
graphics devices. Auxiliary COST
blocks are combined with the we have d
FLOWTRAN separations blocks
ABSBR, EXTRC, FRAKB, AFRAC, that apples c
IFLSH, and BFLSH to retrieve the com- to the three n
puted stream properties and store the procedures
data in display files. After each simula- process ty
tion run a menu of graphical options t
lists the displays available for the par- Using the
ticular process involved. simulator
Our program is called "Simulation balance and
Graphics," and it provides all comput- equations foi
ing support for the undergraduate mass- we have writ
transfer course at Iowa State. Working
in small groups, students use the pro- processing soj
gram to generate graphical solutions to data entry aj
problems involving the three separa- numerical
tions processes noted above. During a simulations
typical term, five such problems are
assigned, one each in absorption and st
extraction and three in distillation. The
problems are worded so as to correlate
with the current course textbook (Treybal[lo]), and each
problem concludes with a process specification for which
an optimum design must be found.
To use the program, students choose the process, indicate
the run conditions (feed properties, number of stages, reflux
ratio, etc.), execute the FLOWTRAN simulation, and then
select the type of display that they wish to see. For distilla-
tion they can view either Ponchon-Savarit or McCabe-Thiele
plots, an overall block diagram or the stage-by-stage details
for selected regions of the tower, or other diagrams showing
zoomed displays, logarithmic plots of concentration, and T-
x-y functions. Primary viewing is on a video terminal, but
hard copies may be made when needed.
The power of the technique lies in its speed and its graphi-
cal and chemical accuracy. Running on an unencumbered
VAX 11/780 computer, a simulation may be specified, ex-
ecuted, and its results displayed in about sixty seconds.
Repetitions that involve changing only one or two input
variables may require half that time. For absorption and
stripping, students can explore a range of L/G ratios, ineffi-
cient stages, heat addition or removal, side streams, and
other related changes. Extraction variants include solvent
purity, S/F ratio, and refluxed vs. nonrefluxed operation.
Moreover, these changes can be viewed in time spans short


r e

I re

enough to give continuity to the learning process. Manual
methods, especially when executed carefully, are far too
slow to be effective vehicles for showing trends.
Visual accuracy is guaranteed by the direct plotting of
computed results onto medium-resolution graphics devices.
While the program currently produces displays on Tektronix
hardware, we plan ultimately to port
it to other systems of comparable
eloped a method graphic quality (EGA-equipped PCs,
DEC stations with color graphics,
iputer graphics etc.). Color is an important attribute
ror separations in this method because it distinguishes
nd to several the various components of a staged-
within each. process display-equilibrium and op-
WTRA rating curves, rays, feed and product
lines-and also clarifies the accom-
to solve the paying text that reports the numeri-
ermodynamic cal results for each run.
ach operation, Chemical accuracy follows from the
pre- and post- way in which phase-equilibrium data
are entered. As with other process
rare to simplify simulators, FLOWTRAN contains a
to display the data-regression utility (VLE) that ac-
'sults of the cepts data in various formats and gen-
Sa variety of rates best-fit activity-coefficient pa-
forameters based on user-specified ther-
form modynamic models. Various options
are available for vapor pressure, fu-
gacity, activity coefficients, liquid
density, and the like. The procedure is simple and fast and
guarantees that subsequent operations performed on a sys-
tem are based on a realistic equilibrium function. The re-
peated assumption of ideality, as is often the practice when
teaching basic separations techniques, sends students the
wrong message about the value of chemical accuracy. Using
VLE we have successfully modeled nonideal and azeotropic
vapor-liquid systems for distillation as well as partially mis-
cible liquid-liquid equilibria for extraction.
In designing this software we have attempted to give
graphical support to many of the process variants that can
be handled by FLOWTRAN. Dual feeds, side streams, tray
heaters and coolers, inefficient stages, and partial condens-
ers can not only be simulated but will also be represented in
the computer-generated displays through the correct graphi-
cal constructions. Alternate graphical modes involving
zoomed and logarithmic plots and displays of the stream
details for adjacent trays provide complete definition of a
process and allow for verification of energy and material
balances and physical-property relationships.

Graphical design for staged processes is traditionally car-
ried out before the fact. Diagrams are constructed to deter-

Spring 1994

mine the operating conditions for a process-num-
ber of trays, L/G radio, heating and cooling loads,
and other parameters that specify the operation.
"Simulation Graphics" provides after-the-fact in-
formation. Conditions are supplied to the simula-
tor, and if the separation is successful the results
may then be plotted in any of the standard forms.
While traditional methods yield the number of
stages needed for a separation, simulators require
such numbers before runs can be made. Manual
methods set reflux and L/G ratios on the basis of
predetermined limits. "Simulation Graphics" must
be given those ratios before it can run.

This subtle but important distinction influences
the way that this software is used in the class-
room. Our assignments always begin with
cases that work-sets of operating conditions
that cause FLOWTRAN to converge the bal-
ances, effect a solution, and build a display file
for subsequent plotting. Variations are then
imposed upon these base cases to achieve the ac-
tual operations desired.

We feel that there is little pedagogical loss in
this approach. The advantages gained from stu-
dents being able to introduce process variations
quickly, easily, and with full graphical support far
outweigh any effort required by a shift in teaching
style. With this software we have been able to
assign problems of greater significance, having
more complexity, requiring less student effort,
and offering a higher expectation of performance
than was possible with classical methods. More-
over, it exposes our students to the benefits of
computer-based visualization early in their devel-
opment and in a context uniquely associated with
chemical engineering.

Students learn to use "Simulation Graphics"
quickly. Each group has an introductory session
with the instructor before running the first (ab-
sorption) assignment. Handout materials lead the
students through the procedure and complement
the prompts that appear on the screen. Learning
the operations for the distillation and extraction
problems that come later in the course requires
only a small additional effort.

In the remainder of this paper we will show
selected displays from among those generated
in our current group of assignments. The figures
were produced with a Tektronix model 4696
printer with all colors set to dark blue for maxi-
mum contrast. Where information has been lost
because of the absence of color, callouts have been
added for clarity.


Figure 1 shows the mole-fraction-based equilibrium curve and operat-
ing line for the removal of dilute (1.0%) benzene vapor from nitrogen
using n-hexadecane as the absorbing liquid.* Seven equilibrium trays
are used with a liquid/gas ratio of 0.22 (Ls/Gs is the solute-free ratio). A
regular solution model yielded the near-Henry's law equilibrium curve,
and the small amount of solute transferred accounts for the limited
temperature increase and the straight operating line on fraction coordi-

The oasic FLOWTRAN data base contains physical properties for 180
compounds, but it may be expanded at will using information from standard

L/G= 0.220 ; Ls/G= 8.222
GAS IN: 1.88 00 6 -
LIQUID IN: 0.1B0 "
GAS OUT: 8.056
LIQUID OUT: 4.267 e.6e4

GAS IN: 88.88 0g W.-2
LIQUID IN: 88.88
GAS OUT: 88.51-- --------------
.ese .a8s e.. 4 a.32 8..4

Figure 1. Absorption of dilute benzene.

6.686. --- ~--- ---- -- e-TB --
SOLUTE ABSORBED = 98.00% 8.e ---
L/G= 8.200 ; Ls/GG= 0.217 ?
GAS IN: 7.888 /
LIQUID IN: 0.10088
GAS OUT: 0.169/
LIQUID OUT: 27.686 e' 8.

GAS IN: 88.80 0 g -
LIQUID IN: 88.80
GAS OUT: 81,59
e. 6B86 8.06 8..12 8. 180 8.24B 8.308

Figure 2. Absorption of concentrated benzene.

Chemical Engineering Education

Students learn to use "Simulation Graphics" quickly. Each
group has an introductory session with the instructor before
running the first (absorption) assignment. Handout
materials lead the students through the procedure and
complement the prompts that appear on the screen.

Figure 3. Heat removal using tray coolers (x, y denotes
mole-fraction benzene).

SOLUTE ABSORBED = 96.59%------ -
LIG= 0.288 ; LG,= 8.217
GAS IN: 7.880 /
GAS OUT: 0.287
LIQUID OUT: 27.389

GAS IN: 88.6B0 e,.Z -
GAS OUT: 82.89
R.8Oee .6e ..12 e e8 8 .24.

Figure 4. Absorption with inefficient trays.

gas and liquid flourates ore in lb-moles/hr
temperatures are in degrees F
enthalpies are in BTU/Ib-mole x 1803
Q-ualues are in BTU/hr x 10-6

Spring 1994

Figure 2 shows the same process but with a more
concentrated benzene mixture (7.8%) and a corre-
spondingly curved operating line (range scaling is
automatic). The temperature rise and reduced solu-
bility that one would normally expect from the
greater heat release has been counteracted with cool-
ers on the lower five trays. Heat withdrawals were
adjusted manually for near-isothermal operation.
An alternate display mode is shown in Figure 3,
where the stream details are given for the three
trays at the bottom of the column. In this mode,
one selects a tray and the program responds with
the flowrates, concentrations, temperatures, enthal-
pies, and other details for the specified tray (num-
ber two in this case) and for those immediately
adjacent. Symbols for the coolers are shown along
with the quantities of heat removed.
Figure 4 shows the results from a third absorp-
tion run where a Murphree gas efficiency of 0.8
was applied uniformly to all trays and the tempera-
ture variation was again suppressed with coolers.
Points for the normal equilibrium curve are back-
calculated from the nonequilibrium results and the
specified EMG.
Students are asked also to vary the number of
contacts and the liquid and gas flowrates in this
example so as to produce a near-pinch at the top of
the column. A separate option gives the limiting L/
G ratio that applies for given operating conditions.
Such parametric cases may be run in quick succes-
sion to produce multiple results that aid the percep-
tion of trends.
For processes of absorption and stripping in-
volving straight lines (dilute solutions, near-
isothermal operation, mole-ratio analysis, etc.),
students are asked to compare the rigorous simula-
tor results to those predicted by the Kremser
equation[1 ] for the same sets of terminal condi-
tions. While verifying a useful tool for approxi-
mate analysis, this exercise also promotes confi-
dence in the notion of linearizing a separations
process for rapid modeling. Wankat[12] discusses
this technique at length.

Constant-pressure distillation of two feeds in the
system acetone-isopropanol is shown in Figures 5-
7. A "title page" (not shown) presents the overall
process and shows heating and cooling loads and
terminal flowrates, compositions, and temperatures.
The McCabe-Thiele plot in Figure 5 shows the
relative constancy of the liquid/vapor ratios in the

G(3)= 936.58
y(3)= 8.0156
T(3)= 79.5
H(3)= 8.G562

G(1)= 963.05 0 = 8.5s00 L(2)= 239.87
y(1)= 0.0426 x(2)= 0.1654
T(1)= 88.5 T(2)= 79.5
H(1)= 0.5932 h(2)=-24.4357

G =1688.88 L(1)= 276.82
y =.8788 x(1)= 8.2769
T = 80.0 T(1)= 88.5
H = .6191 h(1)=-22.8876

column and also the thermal conditions and (optimum)
entry-points for the two-phase feeds.* Nonequilibrium
trays may be specified as an option.

The Ponchon-Savarit diagram in Figure 6 adds ther-
mal information and permits confirmation of the
difference points for the three sections of the tower. (Indi-
vidual feed conditions are shown by the square
symbols.) Students mount these plots on large, identically
ruled graph sheets and extend the truncated rays to their
intersections at the actual A points. Heat duties are noted
in both the accompanying text and also in the stage details
for the top and bottom sections of the tower. (The latter
appears in Figure 7.)

For simplicity, pressure in this problem was held con-
stant at one atmosphere throughout the column. A linear
pressure profile may also be imposed by setting the pres-
sures for the top and bottom trays to suitably spaced
values. Effluent compositions from each tray are then
determined from the local pressure value and the physi-
cal-property model in effect. The property model in the
example shown here comprised Antoine vapor pressures,
Redlich-Kwong vapor and liquid fugacities (the latter
Poynting-corrected), and Van Laar activity coefficients
evaluated so as to minimize K-value error between ex-
perimental and predicted data.[13]

The concept of entropy increase on mixing may also be
illustrated in this problem by having students combine the
two feeds and distill the composite in a separate, single-
feed column. The (adiabatically) combined feed-state lies
on the line connecting the individual feeds in Figure 6 and
is shown by the diamond symbol. With other variables
held constant, the reflux is increased until the purity of

*"McCabe-Thiele" is a generic name for this diagram. The
operating lines connect rigorously determined stream
compositions and are straight only if the L/G ratios do not
vary. Similar comments also apply to the q-line construction.


0. 2.2 0.4 8.6 0.8 I10


Figure 5. Acetone-isopropanol distillation, McCabe-
Thiele analysis


m. co 1 25.0 57.0
TEMP (F) 164.0 150.6
2- 46 11U 2-0, 72.51U
95.7 m% components 1
133.8F(bubble point)
D/EF= 084200
3.866 m4. component 1 .
175.80 F
O/EF- 0.5800
ac, EF 18220 BTU/lbmle
QB, OF 9503 BTU/ibrole
S L/= 2.180
feed 1 on 3
feed 02 an 6




.:Z __
,.... !' L .i i l


SX 1) Y(c1

Figure 7. Lower stages and (partial) reboiler.

xw ..c o.- 0.0 Y ..o t .

Figure 8. Open-steam distillation of methanol (1) water (2).

Chemical Engineering Education

I /l

Figure 6. Distillation with two feeds.

vapor and liquid flowrotes are in Ib-rmles hr
enthalples ore in BTU/ib-male o 10 3
terperatures are In degrees F

Feed1 U(3)- 8B 56 L(4). 180.36
F,= 26.97 y(3)= 0 3716 x(4 )- 8.2285
S, H(3)= 3.2347 h(4 )-13.2770
h -13.4819 T(3)1 164.1 T(41) 158.45
T- 164.-0
H 3.2311 3
3y 8.3741
F, 23.03 U(21) 62.03 L(3) 125.83
y(2)= 8.2495 x(3)0 8.1426
H23)1 3.4336 h(3) -13.4038
T 2)= 169.78 T(3). 164.11
Ul 1) 61.11 L(2 ) 124.91
y(l)= 0.1276 1(2)= 8.8821
H(1 ) 3.6296 h(2)--1.4323
T(11) 175,04 3-2 T(2)- 16978
L= 63.88
O. F 9253 STAGE 1 AND
-.037 B--- BTU/mole THE REBOILER
h-13.3886 ARE TAKEN TO



the single-feed distillate matches that obtained when the
feeds are separated. The added heat load is then related
qualitatively to the energy needed to "demix" the composite
(approximately a 20% increase in this example).
Figure 8 shows the results of open-steam distillation of
a two-phase feed in the methanol-water system. Wet steam
at 50 psia and 10% moisture is fed to the bottom of a 16-
tray tower with the feed nozzle at tray 3 and a side-
stream port (for liquid withdrawal) at tray 6. The McCabe-
Thiele diagram shows the large concentration-change-
per-stage in the stripping section, the misplaced feed
condition, and the high-purity distillate (xD=0.9968). The
rectifying line is broken at tray 6 to reflect the withdrawal of
40% of the liquid flow. The accompanying numerical data
(not shown here) report the condenser duty and the condi-
tions of the entering steam to give the energy and cooling
requirements for the process.
Tray compositions at the top of the tower are given by
a separate logarithmic plot (seen here as an inset to Figure
8). High-purity bottoms products may also be represented
in this way.

As a final example, pure isopropyl ether is used to sepa-
rate acetic acid from aqueous solution in a countercurrent
extractor with four perfect stages. Isothermal conditions are
assumed. Phase-equilibrium data were obtained for the ace-
tic acid-water-ether ternary,[10, p. 494] and Renon activity
coefficients were fitted to the experimental coexistence curve
to include acid compositions well in excess of those in-
volved in the extraction.
Figure 9 shows the right-triangular diagram for the pro-
cess. The bulk-mixing point (E) reflects the mass balance
among the terminal streams, and the position of the differ-

Figure 9. Liquid-liquid extraction.

ence point gives a solvent-to-feed ratio approximately 2.7
times the minimum.
The same information may be plotted on solute-distribu-
tion coordinates, where raffinate/extract flow ratios may be
obtained from the local slope of the operating curve (or
from the actual flows given on the plots of individual stages).
Other display modes include coordinates for solvent-free
and immiscible-liquid flows, as well as for the basic ternary
phase diagram.

For each of the above processes, the FLOWTRAN block
diagram is constructed by "Simulation Graphics" instead of
by the user. Two-feed distillation uses the FLOWTRAN
unit FRAKB in a normal configuration-the feed condi-
tions, the fraction overhead, the reflux, and the number of
trays of specified efficiency determine the rates and compo-
sitions of the products. The open-steam example employs
the block AFRAC, but in a less conventional mode, where
internal control loops yield an effective total condenser and
a reflux-dependent product. But these connections are un-
seen by the user who specifies the process by responding to
separations-language prompts and is thus shielded from de-
tailed interaction with the simulator.
Graphical operations in the program are independent of
the simulations. All numerical results are written to display
files which are used separately to produce the various draw-
ings available. The usual FLOWTRAN output files (histo-
ries, FTO files, etc.) are turned off during normal operation
but may be re-enabled within the program for purposes of
"Simulation Graphics" will continue to grow as we add
more algorithms to assemble the FLOWTRAN blocks in
new and more varied ways. The principal efforts at present
involve creating interactive access to the FLOWTRAN physi-
cal-property base and employing additional control loops to
expand the ways in which processes may be specified.[14]
Inclusion of the data-regression utility within the interactive
shell is also planned.
Future enhancements will include utilities to model con-
tinuous-contact processes and also expanded graphics capa-
bilities for representing various aspects of multicomponent
separations. Extensions to other process simulators and to
other computing systems are likewise being considered.
Our goal in developing this software has been to create a
precise pedagogical tool, undiluted by limitations and sim-
plifying assumptions, yet fast and easy enough to use for a
typical undergraduate separations course. Computer-assisted
instruction should broaden a student's experience, first by
removing the tedium of repetitive and mechanical opera-
tions and second by filling the time saved with work that
Continued on page 139.

Spring 1994


learning in industry

This column provides examples of cases in which students have gained knowledge, insight, and experience in the
practice of chemical engineering while in an industrial setting. Summer interns and coop assignments typify such
experiences; however, reports of more unusual cases are also welcome. Description of analytical tools used and the
skills developed during the project should be emphasized. These examples should stimulate innovative approaches
to bring real world tools and experiences back to campus for integration into the curriculum. Please submit
manuscripts to Professor W. J Koros, Chemical Engineering Department, University of Texas, Austin, Texas 78712.


in Industrial Pollution Prevention

University of Tennessee
Knoxville, TN

he DuPont Design Internship in Pollution Preven-
tion at The University of Tennessee is an honors
course in which source reduction is incorporated into
the design of industrial processes. The internship project
described here focused on future systems for the production
of HCN and was supported by the DuPont Company. The
student design team consisted of six chemical engineering
seniors; it was supported by both faculty and industrial ad-
visors. The output was a design report on HCN processes
for the future. An important benefit of the activity was the
intensive process design experience for the students that
emphasized pollution prevention concepts.
The design internship proceeds through the following typi-
cal steps for preliminary process synthesis and evaluation:
Project definition
Flowsheet development
Design of equipment sufficiently for cost estimating
Economic analysis
The activity described here is honors experience in indus-
trial process design where pollution prevention through ba-
sic flowsheet development and equipment selection is em-
phasized rather than the more conventional treatment of
effluent waste streams. This was the third such internship;
the course is now a permanent component of the curricu-
lum-a 3-semester-hour alternative to the capstone senior
design course. Student selection is based on academic

m" E.I. du Pont de Nemours and Co., Victoria, TX
[2' E.I. du Pont de Nemours and Co., Orange, TX
3m E.I. du Pont de Nemours and Co., Memphis, TN

achievements and completion of an informal interview. Pro-
viding equal opportunity for all chemical engineering stu-
dents having appropriate prerequisite course work is an im-
portant consideration.
The chemical engineering faculty involved in this activity
have typically been one full-time tenured faculty member
and an emeritus faculty member; other faculty members
have also been involved. Salary recovery for the full-time
faculty member and reimbursement of other faculty through
consulting arrangements or salary recovery is typical. Full
financial support for the project was provided by DuPont.
Successful activities such as this one require considerable
faculty time, and non-tenured faculty should carefully con-
sider whether their involvement will endanger promotion

Robert M. Counce is professor of Chemical Engineering at The Univer-
sity of Tennessee. He holds a PhD in chemical engineering from UT. Prior
to coming to UT in 1981, he was at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
He conducts research in separations, process design, and pollution pre-
John M. Holmes is Emeritus Professor of Chemical Engineering at the
University of Tennessee. He holds a PhD in chemical engineering from
UT. Prior to coming to UT, he worked in the chemical and nuclear
Edward R. Moss is an Engineering Associate with DuPont at the Victoria
Development Laboratory. He holds a PhD in chemical engineering from
Texas A & M University.
Ronald A. Reimer is an Engineering Associate in DuPont's Orange,
Texas, nylon intermediates research organization. He holds a BSChE
from the University of California at Berkeley and an MS in chemical
engineering practice from M.I.T. He has been associated with DuPont
since 1969.
Lawrence D. Pesce is an Engineering Fellow with DuPont. He holds a
BS from the University of Wisconsin and an MS from Louisiana State
University, both in chemical engineering. He conducts research and de-

@ Copyright ChE Division ofASEE 1994
Chemical Engineering Education

and tenure. Faculty from other departments are cant pr
extremely valuable in helping the students gain typical
a suitable working knowledge of a subject that agemer
is commensurate with their educational back- cate fre
ground. Professor G.K. Sweitzer of the UT schedule
Chemistry Department was quite helpful in the formula
current study. Students typically communicated mental
frequently with industrial project advisors via e- of time
mail and fax messages; the industrial project effort r
advisors for the current study were the DuPont P
authors of this paper. Again, input from the in-
dustrial project advisor is necessary to insure The
that a high quality experience for the students as a bas
and a useful design study be accomplished, are pro
The focus of the faculty and industrial advi- ogy.1 1
sors is providing the necessary conditions and
support for a student-directed process design CI
team. This is usually the student's first signifi- The ma


Figure 1. Block diagram for Andrussow process for HCN
production with ammonia recycle.

Figure 2. Andrussow process for HCN production with ammonia recycle.'"
Spring 1994

oject involving a team rather than individual effort, and they have
y had limited exposure to environmental regulations or waste man-
It operations. They alternate weekly as group leaders and communi-
quently with their advisors. There are usually three hours a week of
ed group meetings (with faculty advisors present) where goals are
ated, accomplishments presented and reviewed, and a few supple-
faculty lectures are presented. The students contribute a great deal
to successful conclusion of the projects-similar to the time and
required of a typical engineering capstone design experience.

Andrussow process for HCN production with NH3 recycle was used
se process for cost comparison. Since the details of the actual study
prietary, this discussion will use information on the Andrussow
with NH3 recovery from The Encyclopedia of Chemical Technol-
'he Andrussow process uses the catalytic reaction
,(g) + NH3(g) + 1.5 0(g) -> HCN(g) + 3 H20(g) + 115.2 kcal (1)
jor steps of the Andrussow process with NH3 recycle are illustrated
in the block diagram of Figure 1. The HCN synthesis step of
the Andrussow process was common for all the alternative
designs considered; this study focused on variations of the
ammonia recovery step and the HCN refining step. The base
case process, the Andrussow process with NH3 recycle, is illus-
trated more completely in Figure 2. Typical reactor operating
information and yield are provided in Table 1. Figure 2 shows
unreacted NH3 recovered from the reactor product gas by the
reversible reaction
NH3(g) + H2NH4PO4(1) <-> H(NH4)2P04(1) (2)
The forward reaction of Eq. (2) removes NH3 from the reac-
tor product gas while the reverse reaction allows the recovery
of NH3 and regeneration of the phosphate solution.

Live Steam

HCN Production
by Andrussow Process'"

Typical Reaction Conditions
Temperature = 1100C
Pressure = 2 atm
Precious Metal Catalyst

Typical Off-Gas Composition from
Reactor (mol%)

N, 46.5%
H,O 15.0%
H, 22.0%
HCN 8.0%
CO 5.0%
CO2 0.5%
CH4 0.5%
NH, 2.5%

The project was initiated at a DuPont HCN production
facility; the facility was toured, information on HCN pro-
duction was provided, and the ground rules for the project
were established. Prior to this meeting, the project had been
selected through discussions involving faculty and DuPont
personnel, and some introductory material had been given
to the students. Subsequent projects have used other for-
mats, including a visit to the industrial site later in the
project and a student presentation on their thoughts about
the most appropriate design alternatives for the project.
At the initiation meeting for the current project, some
alternative designs were suggested and supporting informa-
tion was provided, as available; still other alternative de-
signs were developed by the students later in the study. The
supporting information included desired product purity, rel-
evant reaction rates and yields, reaction and phase equilibria
information, by-product formation data, operating and pilot
plant data, and safety and toxicity information. More sup-
porting information was available for some alternative stud-
ies than for others.
Incorporating pollution prevention techniques in the de-
sign of chemical production facilities leads to processes in
which non-product streams are either eliminated or have a
minimal impact on the environment. The focus of the pollu-
tion reduction activities of this study was on aqueous waste.
The design activity sought to reconfigure the ammonia re-
covery and HCN refining steps while retaining HCN prod-
uct purity and providing aqueous waste streams that could
be effectively treated with biological techniques. The typi-
cal incineration techniques for off-gas treatment from these
facilities were retained for this study. Processes based on
revision of the basic Andrussow process shown in Figure 2,
as well as developmental and conceptual processes, were
included in this activity.

Much of the nature and the input-output structure of alter-
native flowsheets[21 may be found from an examination of
the HCN production reaction and the product gas from the
reactor. Water is a by-product of this reaction; the reaction
does not go to completion so that CH4 and NH3 are present
in the reactor product gas. Both gas and aqueous waste
streams are likely to be hazardous due to the presence of
HCN, NH3, sulfates, and phosphates. Recovery and in-pro-
cess recycle of NH3 provide an opportunity for source re-
duction. Additionally, an acidic stabilizer added to the
stripped HCN, as shown in Figure 2, contributes to the
aqueous waste from this process step. Recovery and reuse
of the stabilizer provides a source reduction opportunity.
Additional components used in the process shown in Figure
2, such as the H3PO4, were selected based on the ability to
recover and recycle these components.
The development of alternative flowsheets was based on

the specifications of the reactor product gas and on the
effluent streams from the recovery and refining areas. Gen-
erally, all alternative flowsheets begin with the recovery of
NH3 and HCN from the reactor product stream (removal of
water is associated with this step). The remainder of the
flowsheet development focuses on the purification of the
HCN product stream, the recovery and reuse of NH3 and
stabilizer, and the associated phase splits and other liquid
recovery systems.
Some streams designated as waste streams in flowsheet
development are inherent in the fundamental process, while
others are associated with by-product formation and the
more ancillary aspects of the process. The ease in identifica-
tion of waste streams varies greatly; some wastes can be
identified from the macroscopic material balances, while
others can only be identified by actual process experience.
Information on some waste streams required discussions
with knowledgeable DuPont personnel in order to get a total
view of the wastes generated in the current process. This
designation of waste streams is discussed further by Berglund
and Lawson.[31
The window for creativity in this activity comes after the
students understand the process and its constraints and be-
gin formulating their flowsheets. The semi-structured brain-
storming activities of this phase may take a considerable
amount of time. As a result of the increased time for flowsheet
development in the study described here, the economic analy-
sis portions were compressed so that the project could be
accomplished in one semester.

The factored approach has generally proven reliable for
preliminary estimates of fixed-capital investment by per-
sons other than an expert. In this method, the purchased cost
of the major equipment items is estimated and the total
fixed capital investment is estimated by applying a multi-
plier (Lang factor) to the purchased cost of the major equip-
ment items.'4" For the current activity, a less time-consum-
ing approach was used, based on an approach by Zevnik and
TFCI = 1.33 NFU (CPF)(CE/102) (3)
TFCI = total fixed capital investment
NFU = number of functional units (a functional unit is all
the equipment necessary to carry out a significant
process step)
CPF = cost per functional unit
CE = chemical engineering plant cost index
Estimation of the cost per functional unit and identification
of functional units were validated by comparison with ac-
tual plant costs in the student's analysis. This total fixed
capital investment was calculated for the traditional func-

Chemical Engineering Education

tional units, such as distillation equipment, and this value
adjusted to account for those process equipment items
thought to be "nontraditional," such as membrane processes.
Annual operating costs were then estimated by taking into
account the annual cost of capital and other expenses.
A comparison of the estimated cost of the alternate pro-
cesses with current process technology was then made to
establish economic viability.

The design report from the current study was a confiden-
tial document wherein both students and faculty signed a
"limited term" secrecy agreement with DuPont. Secrecy was
necessary so the students could have access to proprietary
information and thus develop as useful a study as possible.
The final report was reviewed first by the university advi-
sors, and after their comments were addressed, it was re-
viewed a second time by both university and DuPont project
advisors. Oral reports by the students design team at the
midpoint of the activity provided an opportunity for mid-
course corrections. The midpoint meeting is very important
in focusing the study to meet the needs of the sponsor. A
final oral report by the student design team was made at the
conclusion of the project.

The type of activity described in this paper provides for
student and faculty involvement in significant and challeng-
ing projects involving pollution prevention. The expected
benefits to the students are:
Developing solutions to existing chemical engineering
problems under realistic industrial considerations and tight
time constraints.
Experiencing group problem-solving where they establish
their own group structure and assign their own responsi-

bilitiesfor the results.
Learning to develop flowsheets and material balances
when they have incomplete process information.
The studies emphasize pollution prevention through basic
process flowsheet and equipment modifications rather than
through conventional waste effluent treatment applications.
The successful completion of projects such as this one
supplements corporate design activities, particularly when
emerging technologies are involved. This project and simi-
lar activities have been well received by the students. Their
enthusiasm, perseverance, and overall quality of work is
sincerely appreciated by their advisors and sponsors. Par-
ticipants in these activities typically begin industrial careers
soon after project completion, while a small number of them
go to graduate school.

This activity was supported by a grant from E.I. DuPont
de Nemours and Company. The students participating in the
activity described here were Linda K. Frazier, Mark A.
Guimond, L. Meera Krishnan, Philip D. Moler, S. Antony
Stagnolia, and Philip A. Wisnewski.

1. Jenks, W.R., "Cyanides," Encyclopedia of Chemical Tech-
nology, 3rd ed., Vol. 7 (edited by M. Grayson), Wiley-
Interscience, New York, NY (1978)
2. Douglas, J.M., "Process Synthesis for Waste Minimization,"
Ind. Eng. Chem. Res., 31, 238 (1992)
3. Berlund, R.L., and C.T. Lawson, "Preventing Pollution in
the CPI," Chem. Eng., 120, September (1991)
4. Peters, M.S., and K.D. Timmerhaus, Plant Design and Eco-
nomic Analysis for Chemical Engineers, 4th ed., McGraw-
Hill, New York, NY (1991)
5. Zevnik, F.C., and R.L. Buchanan "Generalized Correlation
of Process Investment," Chem. Eng. Prog., 70, February
(1963) 0

book review

Enrich Your Life and Get Things Done
by Donald R. Woods, Shirley D. Ormerod
Pfeiffer & Company, International Publishers, 8517 Production
Avenue, San Diego, CA; (1993)

Reviewed by
Eugene R. Seeloff
University of Virginia

This book, coauthored by a professor of chemical engi-
neering and a program assistant at McMaster University in
Hamilton, Ontario, is an excellent tool for students, alumni,

and faculty, as well as for career planning and place-
ment professionals. Because NETWORKING skills have
become increasingly important to anyone trying to develop
and realize professional or personal goals, this book will
greatly assist, and motivate, the reader to understand
what NETWORKING really is and to learn how to NET-
WORK effectively.
In addition to their own ideas and experiences, the authors
have drawn on other published materials to create an easy-
to-read workbook complete with interesting and thought-
provoking exercises for the reader to complete. They have
Continued on page 139.

Spring 1994

[ 15 laboratory




University of Dayton
Dayton, OH 45469-0246

A t times troubleshooting seems inherent in the unit
operations laboratory; the instructor and students
are often confronted by leaking pumps, malfunc-
tioning thermocouples, unreliable water and steam supplies,
and other trouble-prone equipment. This article, however,
addresses the structured use of troubleshooting experiments
to develop students' ability to diagnose and correct unac-
ceptable process performance.
The importance of troubleshooting is readily apparent to
engineers working in manufacturing and technical sales.
They are often confronted by malfunctioning hardware or
processes, and they must correct the problem despite severe
limitations on their resources (primarily time, money, and
information). A recent series of papers[1-4] and at least one
book15' also attest to the significant role of troubleshooting
in chemical engineering practice.
The general importance of problem solving in engineer-
ing education and practice is well recognized (for example,
see Lubkin161 and Sears, et al.171). But troubleshooting is not
often considered on a distinct basis, although Woods"81 has
provided some good examples of using troubleshooting ex-
ercises in chemical engineering courses. Unfortunately, how-
ever, most laboratory courses do not incorporate trouble-
shooting experiments into their structure (a recent exception
is Fujii's191 use of troubleshooting experiments in an intro-
ductory circuit analysis laboratory).

Department of Chemical and Materials Engi-
neering at the University of Dayton. He received
his BChE degree from the University of Dayton
and his DSChE from Washington University in
St. Louis. His research interests are in multi-
phase agitation and chemical reactors.
Copyright ChE Division ofASEE 1994

I have used troubleshooting experiments in the unit opera-
tions laboratory and believe that this course represents
the ideal point in the curriculum to introduce such mat-
erial, primarily because it is hardware-oriented and one
of its objectives is to demonstrate that real-world equip-
ment and processes do not always function in the manner
described in textbooks.
The basic concept of troubleshooting, or diagnostic, prob-
lem solving is straightforward. When faced with a malfunc-
tioning system, the problem cause must be identified, cor-
rective action must be taken, and any recurrence of the
problem must be prevented.""0 The idea of using experi-
ments of this type in the unit operations laboratory followed
Macias-Machin, et al.'s1 ] proposal to improve undergradu-
ate chemical engineering laboratories through the use of
research-type experiments. Both research and troubleshoot-
ing experiments enhance the laboratory experience by con-
fronting students with realistic situations in which they must
formulate their own strategy, carry out a plan, and evaluate
the success of their efforts-skills that should be developed
in upper-level engineering courses.

Every department would have to develop its own set of
troubleshooting experiments because of the differences in
hardware, but almost any unit operations experiment could
be used for this purpose. I have developed experiments in
the areas of chemical reaction engineering, plastic injection
molding, spray drying, and agitation.
To clarify the concept, this paper will briefly outline an
agitation troubleshooting experiment. Note that two or three
students work as a group on this project and that they are
given two five-hour laboratory periods to complete their
work. Also, troubleshooting experiments are used to en-
hance the course-they are not the focus of the course. Each
group is given only one project of this type during the term
and only after the students have completed a number of
more traditional experiments.
Troubleshooting experiments provide an excellent oppor-
Chemical Engineering Education

tunity to sharpen students' ability to communicate through
brief memorandums, perhaps the most common form of
written communication for practicing engineers."2 The fol-
lowing is the assignment memorandum for the example (note
its official tone):

At this point the students begin working in a manner
similar to the methods used in any upper-level engineering
laboratory. After a brief literature search they should be able
to find Zwietering's"31 correlation (or a similar one) for esti-
mating the agitator speed required to suspend solids so they
do not rest on the tank base for more than two seconds:

( i ^0.45
Sv0.1d0.2 X 0.13
P ( ------
Njs =,0.85

The parameter S is dependent on impeller type and system
geometry, and the students can determine its magnitude by
performing experiments with a few solids in a laboratory-
scale agitator. Armed with this information, they can then
estimate the speed required to suspend the catalyst in the
laboratory-scale apparatus. Subsequent experiments with the
catalyst sample will indicate that much higher levels of
agitation are required to achieve adequate suspension. The
troubleshooting begins at this point as the students attempt
to determine the cause of this unusual behavior.
After struggling with the problem, the students should
Spring 1994

submit a memorandum similar to the following:

This example demonstrates that troubleshooting experi-
ments require students to perform many of the same func-
tions carried out in other experiments-among other things,
becoming familiar with the literature, planning and execut-
ing an experimental program, and reporting the results.
Troubleshooting experiments also provide an opportunity
for students to develop their problem-solving skills while
working on challenging, realistic problems while, at the
same time, giving the instructor an opportunity to teach the
students about problem-solving strategies,1"4151 heuristic prob-
lem solving,[161 creativity and idea-generation techniques,"7'"8]
and decision-making strategies."5 171

The basic troubleshooting experiment as described in this
paper is easy to develop. It is also very flexible and can be
readily changed from year to year to provide variety. A
number of variations can be incorporated, such as: giving
the students a budget, then charging them for performing
experiments and asking questions (as suggested by Squires,
Continued on page 127.

, classroom



Part 1. Professional and Issue-Oriented Approachm

Universitat Rovira i Virgili
43006 Tarragona, Catalunya, Spain

Most chemical engineering education is delivered
in a conventional three-mode structure of lec-
tures, supervised problem-solving sessions, and
predefined experimental work in the laboratory. In some
cases these activities are combined in an integrated approach,
strengthened by a variety of classroom organizations, and
complemented with extracurricular activities by faculty con-
cerned about ways to increase students' perceptions of the
importance of effective human interactions in the engineer-
ing profession."' This approach has been generally accepted
because it produces engineers who are knowledgeable about
existing technology. Employers have overcome any lack of
necessary skills and/or professional orientation of new em-
ployees through additional on-the-job training. It has been
estimated that it takes two years after schooling for a gradu-
ate to become a fully effective engineer.121
Past concerns of the chemical industry about the need to
change undergraduate engineering education131 have increased
recently because organizational behavior is affected by the
rapidly occurring technological changes. Also, industries
must implement these changes while at the same time re-
maining competitive in a global market strongly influenced
by societal issues.
There has been ample documentation[2,4,51 that even well-
trained graduating engineers sometimes lack the skill and
experience to apply their knowledge in a way that contrib-
utes to the solving of an actual problem, whether it be on an
individual basis or in a group situation. One possible expla-
nation is the fact that traditional engineering education is an
artificial process-the students are passive, listening sub-
jects who memorize individual facts and technical proce-
dures taught in separate courses; they are seldom encour-

'Part 2 of this paper, "Approach at the Introductory Level," will
appear in the next issue of CEE.
2University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720

aged to ask questions or analyze available evidence.
Students first learn the basic sciences and mathematics
that are necessary for understanding engineering principles
and processes. Then, if they want to become chemical engi-
neers they study, for example, various principles and opera-
tions used to change raw materials into useful products. In
this context, a chemical engineer can be considered an ex-
pert in the calculations, design, construction, and operation
of equipment or installations where matter undergoes a
change of state, energy, or composition. Understanding top-
ics such as thermodynamics and kinetics, the physico-chemi-
cal properties of matter, heat transfer and fluid flow, etc., is
essential to their success.
In our traditional artificial approach, each of these topics
is studied as a separate discipline, taught by professors who
are experts in their field. The implied assumption is that if a
student understands the various individual subject principles
Francesc Giralt is Professor of Chemical Engineering at the University
Rovira i Virgili in Catalunya, Spain. He received his BCh from the Institut
Quimic de Sarria (Barcelona), his BChE from the University of Barcelona,
his MBA from the ICT (Barcelona), his MASc and PhD from the University
of Toronto, and his ScD from the University of Barcelona. His research is in
the areas of experimental and computational transport phenomena, reac-
tor design, and chemical kinetics.
Magda Medir is Associate Professor of Chemical Engineering and Sci-
ence Education at the University Rovira i Virgili in Catalunya, Spain. She
received her BCh from the Institut Quimic de Sarria (Barcelona), her BChE
from the University of Barcelona, her MASc from the University of Toronto,
and her ScD from the University of Barcelona. Her research is in the area
of issue-oriented science education.
Herbert D. Thier is Associate Director of the Lawrence Hall of Science at
the University of California, Berkeley. He received his BA from the State
University of New York, Albany, and his EdD from New York University. He
is director of the Science Education for Public Understanding Program and
has lectured and consulted extensively on science education in the United
States and other countries.
Xavier Grau is Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the
University Rovira i Virgili in Catalunya, Spain. He received his BCh and his
ScD from the University of Barcelona. His main areas of research are
computational fluid dynamics and transport phenomena.
Copyright ChE Division ofASEE 1994
Chemical Engineering Education

... concerns about the real-world problems in engineering education suggest the possibility of taking a
more professional and issue-oriented holistic or integrated approach to engineering education.
This does not mean simply incorporating a project or a research period into the standard course ...,
but rather signifies a total reorganization of the approach to instruction and assessment.

and processes, he or she will be able to apply them to real-
world problems-the essence of engineering. Feedback from
the real world where these engineers go to practice their
craft, however, indicates that initially they are not very effi-
cient in synthesizing what they have learned into an inte-
grated approach to solving a problem.
Also, our synthetic approach to engineering education fo-
cuses on the role of the individual student as learner and
practitioner since each individual is evaluated separately
and the goal is to do better on an individual basis. Rhinehart
substantiates these points of view. 1671 This individual focus
is quite different from the actual practice of engineering
today where group efforts are common and an individual
with expertise in a specific field contributes to the solving
of an interdisciplinary problem.
The need to modify the traditional lecture approach has
become more apparent in recent years. We increasingly ex-
pect today's engineer to deal effectively with the environ-
mental and other public policy issues that are an integral
part of modern engineering activity. This, in turn, demands
a capacity to synthesize one's thinking since the engineer
must go beyond the science and at least be cognizant of the
public policy issues involved in his or her work. These
concerns about the real-world problems in engineering edu-
cation suggest the possibility of taking a more professional
and issue-oriented holistic or integrated approach to some
or all of engineering education. This does not mean simply
incorporating a project or a research period into the standard
course as suggested by many (see, for example, Miller and
Petrich181), but rather signifies a total reorganization of the
approach to instruction and assessment.
The chemical engineering faculty of the former Univer-
sity of Barcelona in Tarragona, Catalunya, Spain, decided in
1985 to fully implement a holistic approach in an introduc-
tory chemical engineering major taught in the college of
chemistry. One reason for accepting the challenge of chang-
ing educational methodologies at that time was a diminish-
ing interest of the students enrolled in the College of Chem-
istry toward chemical engineering.
The introductory course was organized around a theme,
such as the preliminary design of a chemical plant. Students
focused their attention on several issues of engineering and
societal interest that could be analyzed while learning the
basic principles of chemical processes, unit operations, and
transport phenomena. A cooperative goal structure was
adopted as the basic instructional method for the course
since cooperation is most effectively used for learning con-
Spring 1994

ceptual and theoretical skills, for open-ended problem solv-
ing, for reasoning assignments, and for problems involving
technology and society,'191" A description of the basic ele-
ments of cooperative learning may be found elsewhere.[ 11-5
The specific methodological objectives were to
O Incorporate practicing-engineer skills and public-
policy issues into the first course where basic
chemical engineering principles are taught
O Integrate effective project management and relevant
behavioral experiences into the classroom via
cooperative group learning'161"
4 Introduce decision making and work interdepen-
dence as the basis for achieving the two previous
Prepare students for a commitment to continuing
education throughout their professional life
O- Involve chemical engineering faculty, as well as staff
from industry, in this educational effort
Encourage both students and professors to have fun
in this challenging and responsible learning envi-

The introductory course was also designed to illustrate the
roles of and opportunities for chemical engineers, while at
the same time providing a perspective for subsequent
classes.18' In addition, it considered environmental issues as
part of the everyday practice of chemical engineering.17'181
The following sections describe the organization of the
course, the procedures we followed, and the opinions of the
faculty and industry with respect to the results of the holistic
approach adopted. The specific guidelines and evaluation,
along with the students' opinions of the course, will be
presented in the second installment of this paper to be pub-
lished in the next issue of CEE.

The content of the course and all class work were orga-
nized into several activities. The modular structure facili-
tates an educational approach tailored to the student's needs
(which may change every year). It also encourages the par-
ticipation of these students in deciding their own objectives,
i.e., students assume responsibility for their own learning
when defining the course activities and deciding their goals.
This latter aspect is very important because the course is
intended to be a simulation of real workplace situations that
most practicing engineers face in industry.

Within this framework, students can learn the process of
asking questions-the basic scientific and technological ap-
proach for discovery and understanding. Also, learning
new concepts and skills when the need arises rather than
in a predetermined sequence favors student motivation and
the learning process itself. Simulating a real daily work-
place environment requires a non-standard schedule for the
course. Since the students are no longer passive receptors,
weekly class work was usually carried out in two separate
sessions of three and two hours, respectively. Thus, all
activities were developed during one or several class
periods or sessions of five hours, with the following
organization and characteristics:
Activities began and ended with a session.
Students played an active role, either individually
or as members of a team or group. A combination
of individual and team effort was adopted in some
activities to emphasize the need for sharing and
collaboration with others when moving from a
creative to an applied level. The groups were
formed by five students (i.e., twelve groups for a
class of sixty) or by four members when enroll-
ment was lower.
The decision about what to do next (i.e., asking a
pertinent question and defining the objectives of a
new activity) was the result of a decision made by
the class during the closing discussion of the
current activity. Instructors helped students reach
a decision by matching the different class requests
with the general conceptual framework of the
course. Students were not constrained about the
type, duration, and number of activities to carry
out, but were encouraged to be specific and
realistic in setting their common goals.
The instructors involved in the course, the
professors, and the teaching assistants met weekly
to plan the development of each new activity as
well as to correct time deviations as necessary.
Also, the need for complementary seminars and/or
lectures was determined and the corresponding
time was allocated according to the depth of
analysis expected by the instructors for that
particular activity.
Students had access to resources outside the
classroom to encourage individual or team use of
whatever was required to continue asking more
and more questions about a given problem or
situation. Those resources included the depart-
mental library, computer rooms, other faculty
members, industrial staff and laboratories during
pre-scheduled periods each semester. Library
access was necessary since no specific textbooks
were recommended for this course.

*Laboratory work was not a separate entity from
the class work. About half of the experimental
work was pre-programmed by the instructors and
was carried out by all students either in the
laboratory or in the field. The other half was used
by each group of students to complement their
class work, following an integrated approach.'19
Students were encouraged to experimentally verify
published data or to explore new subjects by using
innovative research approaches.141
A detailed description of the guidelines and activities of
the introductory chemical engineering course taught at
Tarragona will be given in the second installment of this
paper. Activities always began with a general question: i.e.,
Will the chemical plant require external energy supplies?
During the development of the activity this initial question
would be followed by more specific questions, such as:
Which equipment and/or operations will be donors or recep-
tors of energy? Therefore, work aimed at asking further
questions was carried out by teams (or in some specific
cases by individuals) using available technical information
and under the supervision of the group leader. Before the
activity and the class session ended, group leaders handed in
a report to the professor covering all the work done and the
performance of group members.
One-third of the leaders then gave short oral presentations
(five minutes each), in a rotary fashion, reporting the results
and conclusions reached by their teams. This was followed
by a closing discussion that allowed us to reach common
conclusions and to propose the next activity. With this in-
formation the instructors outlined the worksheet for the next
activity, specifying its main goal, the procedures, and the
rules (see, for example, Goldstein[131). This was handed to
each student or group leader at the beginning of the next
session when the new activity started.

Individual and Teamwork
The main objective of organizing the classroom into groups
was to create a learning opportunity where professional and
behavioral values could come into play. It is well known
that teamwork facilitates learning the skills necessary for
dealing with real engineering situations."~01 This type of or-
ganization smooths the future integration of a junior engi-
neer into a corporate culture. In addition, issue-oriented en-
gineering education (e.g., education related to societal is-
sues), is best performed when students assume responsibil-
ity for learning and participate in decision making so that
they can become a part of role-taking and role-playing un-
der a variety of circumstances.
The transmission of old knowledge to students in the
traditional approach to education does not favor creative
thinking,"1151 self-reliance, or cooperation. For example,
Chemical Engineering Education

creativity is fostered by openness to experience and
questioning.120' Individuals who are open to experience can
deal with open questions, (i.e., those with conflicting infor-
mation and ambiguity) with independent thought. Creati-
vity is also fostered by the ability to play (experiment).
This explains why new trends in engineering education
point toward introducing research in undergraduate en-
gineering education.[41
In the present introductory course, the groups were orga-
nized so that each had a leader responsible for the work
involved and for the presentation of results. All members of
each group occupied this position through rotation. During
the stage of gathering evidence, the group leader was al-
lowed to assign work to each member or to let each choose
the role he or she wanted to take and play, depending on the
activity to be carried out and on their preferences and abili-
ties. In any event, all students were supposed to carry out
a part of the group's work, to be aware, to understand
the work done by the group or by any individual member,
and to participate in the process of using all the evidence.
When, for any reason, work was not finished during the
assigned class sessions, it was completed as homework.
This allowed all groups or individuals to proceed at their
own optimal learning pace.
This type of organization encourages

Implementation of student-centered discussions""5
Building a sense of culture and organization
Self-motivation through involvement
Setting up effective communication'"21 while establish-
ing and sharing goals, procedures, and rules
Developing ways of seeking, gathering, assessing, and
sharing information.
Also, students made choices, participated in decision mak-
ing with a creative and critical attitude, and learned how
to identify and generate alternatives to a given situation.
They experienced the process of continuous learning, which
is of more lasting value than specific content in a rapidly
changing society.
Once the class had decided on an activity at the end of a
class session, the instructors handed in, at the beginning of
the next session, a worksheet with the leading questionss, a
set of procedures and rules, and a tentative schedule. Then,
under the responsible coordination of the group leaders,
each team of four to five students:

Brainstormed to explore different possibilities, to get
ideas and to gain insight about the activity in order
to set up appropriate goals.
Identified actions to be undertaken so that tasks and
roles could be defined and assigned to group
members. Students were encouraged not to repeat

the same type of task and role in each activity so
that they could explore their own abilities.
Planned the activity. The importance of work
interdependence, collaborative information
gathering, and processing to achieve a goal was
stressed. [10.11.14
Used the information and evidence to attain the
objectives of the activity. This step usually required
individual efforts by group members working
together in the classroom and learning within the
team of peers through continuous questioning of
each others' results. The instructors and invited
lecturers circulated throughout the classroom to
discuss issues with each group of students when the
need arose, as suggested by Blanks."6' The rule in
this step is never to ask a question of the professor
before the group has thoroughly discussed it.
Prepared the group report and the corresponding
oral presentation. The group leader reported to the
professor the different roles taken and played by
each team member, related any incidents of
importance, and gave an evaluation of the work
done by the group under his or her coordination.
A group member evaluation procedure similar to that sug-
gested by Rhinehartl61 was adopted. The weight of all class-
room and laboratory activities, including projects, was 70%
of the final grade. The other 30% reflected the ability to
solve unknown problems during three open-book tests per
semester. A more detailed account of the student grading
will also be included in the second part of this paper.

The Role of the Instructors
In a cooperative learning environment the professor cre-
ates opportunities or situations where technical skills (or
values) and experience come into play (i.e., the professor is
mainly a resource"3'14). In the educational sense, the profes-
sor is a facilitator of learning because he or she sets up
learning situations that help students identify what they want
and need. In this course the instructors also helped students
use all available information as well as any available exter-
nal resource"~51 so that they could develop technical skills
with a creative and critical attitude.'20 Visits to industry and
discussions with technical staff there were common. The
professor was no longer an infallible expert who "knows
everything" but instead, was merely a person who may not
know everything the students wanted to learn or needed to
know during the course.
The professor operated in the classroom environment ac-
cording to the values (skills) he or she planned to teach. As
a part-time researcher, he or she is knowledgeable about
scientific methodologies and values through having applied
them in everyday experimental work. A researcher learns by

Spring 1994

asking pertinent questions when facing any real-life scien-
tific and/or technological problem. Since this is so, research
becomes an integral part of classroom activity and the meth-
odology applied is coherent with the nature of the subject
being learned. At times the professor acted as a project
manager or supervisor, and at other times as an external
consultant when professional values came into play.
The instructors also dispensed knowledge to single groups
or to the whole class as a response to student requests,
or helped the students learn by structuring situations. A
listening-only type of situation was thus avoided and stu-
dents assumed full responsibility for their own learning.
Experts in the specific topic being treated were invited
to participate and discuss with the class any additional
information required to complete the group activity or
project. This also enabled other faculty and professionals
working in industry to get to know students in advance,
and vice versa, while students in turn had the opportunity
to experience various professional approaches to some
specific engineering problems.
A general and exhaustive overview of the instructor's role
is given by Johnson, et al.[14] It should be noted that in this
course, the students assume responsibility for their own learn-
ing through defining the activities and their goals, planning
materials, assigning roles, and sharing with the instructors
the evaluation of the completion of tasks, among other things.

Faculty who taught engineering courses to these students
in the following years felt that the students knew "less"
contents than before, when the traditional approach to teach-
ing was used, but that they were able to handle new learning
situations with greater success. Also, they reported that the
attitude of the students was more open and interactive than
it had been in previous classes. The students' final perfor-
mance, based on knowledge, seemed comparable. As a re-
sult of the present initiative, teaching of other chemical
engineering courses has also been progressively modified to
integrate some of the methodologies and procedures men-
tioned above.
The personnel departments of the most important chemi-
cal manufacturers in the area of Tarragona (such as Dow
Chemical, Repsol, Hoechst Iberica, BASF, Bayer, ASESA,
and Shell) have expressed the opinion that under real situa-
tions those students who took the holistic-approach course
perform best. Also, their integration within a given corpo-
rate culture is accomplished smoothly and in a shorter pe-
riod of time. The Chemical Manufacturers Association of
Tarragona has collaborated with the present initiative by
offering resources (visits, seminars, etc.) to the classroom.
As a result of this partnership and the change in educational
approach, the number of chemical engineering students hired
from our University during the past five years has been one

of the highest among Spanish engineering schools.
Departmental concern about preparing undergraduate stu-
dents for the rich world of engineering led to the initiation
of new educational experiences. Sustained student enroll-
ment during eight years, faculty and industry involvement
in the teaching, and industrial interest in hiring the gradu-
ates has proven that a professional and issue-oriented ap-
proach to higher education is effective in preparing students
for the technical and societal complexities of present and
future times. We were also very pleased to find that initiat-
ing this course motivated students to elect chemical engi-
neering as a profession and significantly increased enroll-
ment. The number of women enrolled in engineering and
graduating with majors in chemical engineering also in-
creased, from 10% to 35%.

The collaboration of Professors A. Fabregat, X. Farriol, J.
Giralt, J. Grifoll, F. L6pez-Bonillo, and J.A. Ferr6 and the
support from the Chemical Manufacturers Association of
Tarragona (AEQT) are acknowledged and appreciated. The
comments and suggestions made by Profesor J.A.C.
Humphrey of the University of California, Berkeley, are
also acknowledged.

1. Rhinehart, R.R., "The Industrialization of a Graduate: Meth-
ods for Engineering Education," Chem. Eng. Ed., 21, 68
2. Rhinehart, R.R., "The Industrialization of a Graduate: The
Business Arena," Chem. Eng. Ed., 21, 18 (1987)
3. Griskey, R.G., "Undergraduate Education: Where Do We
Go from Here?" Chem. Eng. Ed., 25, 96 (1991)
4. Fletcher, L.S., "The Role of Research in Undergraduate
Engineering Education," presentation at Session 33, 29th
National Heat Transfer Conference, Atlanta, GA (1993)
5. Amyotte, P.R., "Development and Use of Open-Ended Prob-
lems, Chem. Eng. Ed., 25, 158 (1991)
6. Rhinehart, R.R., "Experiencing Team Responsibility in
Class," Chem Eng. Ed., 23, 38 (1989)
7. Rhinehart, R.R., "Improve the Quality of Chemical Engi-
neering Education, Chem. Eng. Prog., 87(8), 67 (1991)
8. Miller, W.M., and M.A. Petrich, "A Novel Freshman Class
to Introduce ChE Concepts and Opportunities," Chem. Eng.
Ed., 25, 134 (1991)
9. Smith, K.A., D.W. Johnson, and R.T. Johnson, "The Use of
Cooperative Learning Groups in Engineering Education,"
Proceedings of the llth Annual ASEE/IEEE Frontiers in
Education Conference, 28 (1981)
10. Smith, K.A., D.W. Johnson, and R.T. Johnson, "Structuring
Learning Goals to Meet the Goals of Engineering Educa-
tion," Eng. Ed., 221, December (1981)
11. Hawley, R.C., and I.L. Hawley, Human Values in the Class-
room, Hart Publishers Co., New York, NY (1975)
12. Goldstein. H., "Cooperative Learning in a Civil Engineer-
ing Curriculum," Proceedings of the 11th Annual ASEE/

Chemical Engineering Education

IEEE Frontiers in Education Conference, 34 (1981)
13. Goldstein, H., "Learning Through Cooperative Groups," Eng.
Ed., 171, November (1982)
14. Johnson, D.W., R.T. Johnson, and K.A. Smith, Active Learn-
ing: Cooperation in the College Classroom, Interaction Book
Co., Edina, MN (1991)
15. Wankat, P.C., and F.S. Oreovicz, Teaching Engineering,
McGraw-Hill, New York, NY (1993)
16. Blanks, R.F., "Fluid Mechanics Can Be Fun," Chem. Eng.
Ed., 13, 14 (1979)
17. Cohen, Y., W. Tsai, and S. Chetty, "A Course on Multime-

dia Environmental Transport, Exposure, and Risk Assess-
ment," Chem. Eng. Ed., 24, 212 (1990)
18. Allen D.T., N. Bakshani, and K. Sinclair Rosselot, Pollution
Prevention: Homework and Design Problems for Engineer-
ing Curricula, University of California, Los Angeles, CA
19. Debelak, K.A., and J.A. Roth, "Chemical Process Design:
An Integrated Teaching Approach," Chem. Eng. Ed., 16, 72
20. Felder, R.M., "Creativity in Engineering Education," Chem.
Eng. Ed., 22, 120 (1988) 0

Continued from page 121.

et al.119]); developing general troubleshooting charts for a
given apparatus (such as those provided with most house-
hold appliances, particularly electronics); or instructing the
students to develop their own troubleshooting experiments
to reinforce what they have learned through application" 61
(and to provide experiments for future classes).
The troubleshooting type of experiment is an excellent
method of improving the unit operations laboratory by pro-
viding an opportunity for students to develop and apply
their problem-solving skills to realistic problems. I have
found that this type of experiment adds enjoyment to the
laboratory experience for the students and for the instructor.
Perhaps the best advice that I can give to anyone inter-
ested in using troubleshooting experiments is to assign mean-
ingful problems-then stay out of the students' way except
to provide occasional guidance and encouragement. The
challenge of the experiments and the students' interest in
applying their skills in realistic situations will ensure a re-
warding educational experience.

I gratefully acknowledge the assistance of numerous stu-
dents in developing and using troubleshooting experiments.
The support of the University of Dayton Fund for Educa-
tional Development was also instrumental in the completion
of this work.

D Impeller diameter (m)
d Particle diameter (m)
g Acceleration of gravity (m/s2)
N Just-suspended agitation speed (s-1)
S Proportionality constant
X Solids loading in slurry (solid weight/liquid weight)
v Liquid kinematic viscosity (m2/s)
p, Liquid density (kg/m3)
Ps Solid density (kg/m3)

1. Kister, H.Z., G. Balekjian, J.F. Litchfield, J.P. Damm, and
Spring 1994

D.R. Merchant, "Absorber Troubleshooting: Systematic In-
vestigation Pays Off," Chem. Eng. Prog., 88(6), 41 (1992)
2. French, W.W., "Tips for Troubleshooting Pumps," Chem. Eng.
Prog., 88(6), 65 (1992)
3. Moyers, C.G., "Don't Let Dryer Problems Put You Through
the Wringer," Chem. Eng. Prog., 88(12) 34 (1992)
4. Hasbrouck, J.F., J.G. Kunesh, and V.C. Smith, "Successfully
Troubleshoot Distillation Towers," Chem. Eng. Prog., 89(3),
63 (1993)
5. Lieberman, N.P., Troubleshooting Process Operations, 3rd
ed., Penwell Publishing, Tulsa, OK (1991)
6. Lubkin, J.L., ed., The Teaching of Elementary Problem Solv-
ing in Engineering and Related Fields, ASEE, Washington,
DC (1980)
7. Sears, J.T., D.R. Woods, and R.D. Noble, eds., "Problem
Solving," AIChE Symposium Series, 79, 228 (1983)
8. Woods, D.R., editor, "Using Trouble Shooting Problems,"
Chem. Eng. Ed., 14(2), 88 and 14(3), 130 (1980)
9 Fujii, T., "Imperfect Laboratory Setups Help Students Cope
with Life in the Imperfect Real World," Proc. of the 1993
ASEE North Cent. Sect. Conf., 4D-1 (1993)
10. Woods, D.R., et. al., "What is Problem Solving?" Chem. Eng.
Ed., 13(3), 132 (1979)
11. Macias-Machin, A., G. Zhang, and O. Levenspiel, "The Un-
structured Student-Designed Type of Laboratory Experi-
ment," Chem. Eng. Ed., 24(2), 78 (1990)
12. McKean, R.A., and E.L. Hanzevack, "The Heart of the Mat-
ter: The Engineer's Essential One-Page Memo," Chem. Eng.
Ed., 23(2), 102 (1989)
13. Zwietering, T.N., "Suspending of Solid Particles in Liquid by
Agitators," Chem. Eng. Sci., 8, 244 (1958)
14. Woods, D.R., "Problem Solving and Chemical Engineering,
1981," AIChE Symp. Ser., J.T. Sears, D.R. Woods, and R.D.
Noble, eds., 79(228), 11 (1983)
15. Kepner, C.H., and B.B. Tregoe, The New Rational Manager,
Princeton Research Press, Princeton, NJ (1981)
16. Polya, G., How To Solve It: A New Aspect of Mathematical
Method, 2nd ed., Princeton University Press, Princeton, NJ
17. Lumsdaine, E., and M. Lumsdaine, Creative Problem Solv-
ing: An Introductory Course for Engineering Students,
McGraw-Hill, New York, NY (1990)
18. Davis, G.A., "Training for Effective Problem Solving," in The
Teaching ofElementary Problem Solving in Engineering and
Related Fields, J.L. Lubkin, ed., ASEE, Washington, DC
19. Squires, R.G., G.V. Reklaitis, N.C. Yeh, J.F. Mosby, I.A.
Karimi, and P.K. Andersen, "Purdue-Industry Computer
Simulation Modules: The Amoco Resid Hydrotreater Pro-
cess," Chem. Eng. Ed., 25(2), 98 (1991) 0

MR laboratory




University of Missouri
Columbia, MO 65211

ne of the major goals in an engineering laboratory
course is a demonstration of the principles and
theory which are presented in lectures and
textbooks. In the chemical engineering curricula, labora-
tory classes are usually first scheduled in the student's
junior year, and they include student preparation of ex-
tensive technical reports concerning the experiments con-
ducted in the lab.
Feeling that the Unit Operations Laboratory could serve
as an introduction to "good engineering practice" in indus-
try, we tried to modify that course in such a way that it
would introduce students to the industrial workplace. Based
on our experiences from that effort, this article suggests
changes in existing laboratory methods that will make the
Unit Operations Laboratory course more closely simulate
industrial work practices.
The following general premises for modification were
Experiments should be performed to obtain, immediately,
the results required for solving simulated industrial prob-
lems; they should not be performed simply to demonstrate
the validity of principles or theory.
Student engineers should be encouraged to know (or find

Thomas R. Marrero received his BS from Poly-
technic Institute of Brooklyn (1958), his MS from
Villanova University (1959), and his PhD from
the University of Maryland (1970), all in chemi-
cal engineering.

I William J. Burkett received his BS from the Uni-
versity of Texas in 1949 and his MS from the
University of Michigan, both in chemical engineer-
Copyright ChE Division ofASEE 1994

out) how to obtain the required results within a specific time
Laboratory reports should accurately and concisely communi-
cate the results of the students' work.
These premises led to a review of the existing procedures
used in conducting experiments. Four key procedural items
were considered: operating instructions, flow diagrams, prac-
tical problems, and laboratory report writing. In the following
paragraphs we will show how each of these items was modi-
fied so as to introduce student engineers to industrial practice.

Operating instructions were written in "layman's" language
and included all the data necessary for calculations. Since
industrial operating instructions are usually written for techni-
cians with, say, two years of college and/or several years of
experience, they should not simply state, for example,
... turn valve A until you get 6 on the rotameter.
That kind of instruction should be, and was, rewritten to state
S. the globe valve just upstream of the exchanger on the cold
water supply is used to manually control the cold water to the
exchanger; slowly open this valve until the rotameter indicates
your initial flow rate.
The idea behind rewriting instructions in this manner is to
encourage students to appreciate the why and how of each
step. The latter instruction helps the student to focus on the
function of each piece of equipment and to realize how each
piece fits into the overall process. The revised operating in-
structions for all the experiments had a consistent format typi-
cal of an industrial operating manual. The procedures were
organized into the following five major sections:
* Checkout Prior to actually conducting the laboratory experiment,
students must make a first-hand inspection of the apparatus.
Their objective is to become familiar with the process and its
components, controls, and utilities (see Table 1). The students
then generate a system flow diagram for checkout purposes.
Start-up The start-up procedure takes the system from "cold"
conditions, with utilities (water, air, electricity) essentially dis-
Chemical Engineering Education

connected, to steady-state conditions. Opera-
tions that may be dangerous are noted and
safety precautions are highlighted, as they
would be in industry.
* Operations Steady-state operations are listed for
the experiment. Limits on operating tempera-
tures, pressures, and power are noted both for
safety reasons and for equipment protection.
* Shutdown The system should be shut down in a
safe and orderly manner and should be left in
its original condition. This responsibility is as-
signed to one student (in industry the student
becomes the group leader). During shutdown,
component deficiencies should be written down
or the instructor should be advised in order to
make the appropriate repairs.
* Emergency Actions Certain operating instruc-
tions are given for cases when someone is in-
jured or the process conditions go out-of-con-
trol. The student engineer is shown how to
quickly and safely shut down the system. For
example, in a steam-heating water experiment,
the emergency action instruction would be to
close the steam valve at its supply header.

Feeling that the Unit Operations Laboratory could serve as an
introduction to "good engineering practice" in industry,
we tried to modify that course in such a way that it would
introduce students to the industrial workplace.

Prior to our revision of the operating instructions, students were given
flowsheets. We feel, however, that an experiment is sometimes best under-
stood through the construction of one's own process flow diagram, so we
required that the students themselves draw the diagrams of the experimen-
tal apparatus or of the system for which the experimental information was
to be applied. The "checkout" diagram did not have to be "professional,"
but it had to reflect an understanding of the system. We required that the
laboratory report be neat and accurate and that the flow-diagram symbols
be the same as used in industry; for this purpose we supplied the students
with the proper equipment and instrument symbols.

In addition to the usual laboratory demonstrations of engineering theory,
we added practical problems to the experiments. Each experiment was
redesigned to require specific data that would help solve a practical indus-
trial problem. For example:
Convective Heat Transfer Experiment
Production department ABM wants to speed up reactor washing by heating the wash
water from ambient (700F) to 1500F. Obtain the heat transfer film coefficient using
our wash water and specify the surface for this exchanger. The heat exchanger must
operate with water flows of 5 to 20 GPM and steam at pressures of 5 to 40 PSIG.
A test heat exchanger is available in the pilot plant (laboratory).

In previous years, laboratory reports were often lengthy documents of
twenty-five or more pages. Unfortunately, much of the student's effort
was expended in simply copying theory and procedures into that report, so
we decided to reduce the report writing requirement by a factor of
about ten! We devised a descriptive outline of the required report and gave
it to each student during the first lab lecture. As a result, the reports now
have a fixed format with a firm two-page limit on the number of "text"
pages (see Table 2).
The revised format requires that the original data sheet for experi-
mental observations and calculations be included, and that it had to be
prepared by the students in advance. This forced the students to deter-
mine exactly what data were needed and how the data would be
converted to the needed results.
The revised report also requires a brief discussion of the practical prob-
lem. The problems were slightly different for each group of students,
which had the effect of minimizing plagiarism and making the reports
more meaningful. The reports also contain a succinct statement regarding
experimental observations applied to a practical problem.

The procedures used in a typical Unit Ops Laboratory course were modi-
fied to more closely reflect actual industrial practice, and included some
applied problems and industrial-type instructions. These modifications were
implemented with minimal cost. O

Spring 1994

re, curriculum




Tel-Aviv University
Tel-Aviv, 69978, Israel

In a paper titled "Process Control Education in the Year
2000,""' strong emphasis was put on the importance of
mathematical modeling and computer simulation with
interactive graphics as key pedagogical tools in both the
present and the future of process control education. Since
computer simulation has been used in control education for
at least twenty years now, it is valid to ask what has changed
and what additional roles an interactive simulation package
can play in process control education.
In the past the most commonly used packages have been
control-oriented packages such as ACS12] or industrial con-
trol systems.[31 These packages are appropriate for demon-
strating the behavior of practical control systems and are
quite suited for use as "add ons" for a traditional control
course. A major deficiency, however, is that these programs
behave as a black box, giving results when input is provided
but hiding the mathematical model from the user.
There are now available some new interactive simulation
packages which accept the mathematical model of the con-
trol system as input in addition to the numerical data of the
process. The user must provide the model, thus creating the
desirable connection between control theory and practical
application. Using this type of package can become an inte-
gral part of the control course and not just an add-on as it
has been in the past with the older packages.
In order to take full advantage of the many desirable
capabilities of the new simulation tools, however, the con-
tent of the traditional undergraduate control course should
be substantially revised. One of the needed revisions, for
example, is a reduced emphasis on linear systems theory.
Most process control textbooks were written before the ad-

SBen-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer-Sheva, 84105 Israel
2 University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT 06269
Copyright ChE Division ofASEE 1994

vent of user-friendly, interactive simulation packages, and
as a result many of them put too much emphasis on linear
systems and linearization methods. Most current mathemati-
cal and control packages employ numerical solution meth-
ods which can solve simultaneous nonlinear ordinary differ-
ential equation (ODE) systems as easily as they solve linear
ones. That means that the traditional dependence on linear-
ization could and should be reevaluated and substantially
Another curriculum revision would be in the required use
of block diagrams within the control package. Such dia-
grams were absolutely necessary when analog computers
were used, and they can be very helpful in demonstrating
the behavior of linear systems; but their importance should
be carefully reevaluated in light of the new simulation pack-
ages. The differential equations (which are the basis for the
block diagrams) can now be inserted directly into the simu-

Neima Brauner received her BSc and MSc
from the Technion, Israel Institute of Technol-
ogy, and her PhD from the University of Tel
Aviv. She is currently Associate Professor in the
Fluid Mechanics and Heat Transfer Department.
She teaches courses in Mass and Heat Trans-
fer and Process Control. Her main research
interests include two-phase flows and transport
phenomena in thin films.

Mordechai Shacham is Professor and Head of
the Chemical Engineering Department at the Ben
Gurion University of the Negev, Beer Sheva, Is-
rael. He received his BSc and DSc from the
Technion, Israel Institute of Technology. His re-
search interests include applied numerical meth-
ods, computer-aided instruction, chemical pro-
cess simulation, design, and optimization, and
expert systems.

Michael B. Cutlip received his BChE and MS
from The Ohio State University and his PhD from
the University of Colorado. He has taught at the
University of Connecticut for the last twenty-five
years, serving as Department Head for nine years.
His research interests include catalytic and elec-
trochemical reaction engineering, and he is co-
author of the POLYMATH numerical analysis

Chemical Engineering Education

lation program, and the required conversion to block dia-
grams becomes unnecessary.
Modifying and reorganizing an existing control course to
embrace the new tools is an evolutionary process and can
present an interesting challenge for the instructor. In this
paper we will offer several practical examples for using an
interactive simulation package in different sections of an
undergraduate control course.
There are several interactive simulation packages which
can be used as a learning tool in the control course, but it is
not our intent to review all of them. We will demonstrate
some applications using the POLYMATH software (which
was developed by two of the authors, Shacham and Cutlip),
but we want to emphasize that other software (such as the
widely used MATLAB package) can also be used for the
same purposes.
The POLYMATH software package was originally devel-
oped for the mainframe Plato education computer system.'41
The current version of POLYMATH (2.1.1.PC) is distrib-
uted by the CACHE (Computer Aids for Chemical Engi-
neering Education) Corporation, a non-profit organization
that disseminates educational computer programs to chemi-
cal engineering departments. This version runs on the IBM
Personal Computer, PS/2, and most compatibles.
Various forms of POLYMATH have been in use for al-
most a decade in support of chemical engineering educa-
tion. Some important features are:
It is a general purpose program now in use in over one
hundred chemical engineering departments. In several de-
partments the students are introduced to POLYMATH in
their first chemical engineering course, so that when they
reach the control course it is a familiar calculational tool
for them. Students can also put this software on their own
personal computers for easy access and use.
The user works directly with the model equations which
provide a direct link between the physical phenomena and
the control system. This is in contrast to many control-
systems simulator programs where the user only provides
parameters to "black box" models (such as ACS'21 or UC

Figure 1. Stirred tank heater

Onlines"5) or the user is required to convert the equations
into block diagrams prior to solution (such as Tutsim6, p.5321
or UCAN II'1).
SProblem set-up, solution, and modification times are very
short. This is especially important in educational use where
a long wait for the result often discourages exploration
and curiosity.

Control of a Stirred Tank Heater
The dynamics and control of a stirred tank heater are
discussed in several popular textbooks.6'9" This simple sys-
tem includes the stirred tank and a PI controller and is
depicted in Figure 1.
The feed stream at constant rate (units: W kg/min) flows
into a stirred tank equipped with a heating device; we want
to heat this stream to a higher temperature TR(C). The
outlet temperature is measured by a thermocouple, and the
required heat supply, q, is adjusted by a PI temperature
controller. The control objective is to maintain To = TR in
the presence of a load due to an inlet temperature, Ti, which
differs from the design value, Tis.
The model equations are:
Energy balance on the stirred tank:

pVC =WC(Ti-T)+q; T(0O)=TR (1)
The thermocouple dynamics as described by first-order lag
+ dead time:

To(t)=T(t-Td) (2a)
m T +Tm =To; Tm(0)=To(0)=TR (2b)
The heat supply as manipulated by the PI controller and
actuator can be defined as
q(t)= qs + K(TR Tm)+KR (TR T)dt (3a)
where q. is the heat supply in design condition
qs = WC(TR -Ts) (3b)
The numerical values of the parameters are

pVC = 4000.0 KJ / C
WC = 500 KJ /(min OC)
T,, = 60C
TR = 80C
This simple process can be used to demonstrate various
concepts in different sections of the control course. Three
possible applications are:

1. Closed loop dynamics
Demonstrate stable and unstable regions for PI control using

Spring 1994

K, = 1000 10,000, K, = 0 5,000 without ('T, Td = 0) and
with ('T = 0 min, 'd = 1) measurement deadtime.

2. Controller Tuning

Tune the PI controller using Astr6m's "ATV" method'" and
the Ziegler-Nichol's6, p.2331 settings.

3. Reset Windup
Investigate the controller behavior if the output from the
heating tank is limited to twice the design value (q 20,000
kJ/s) and the inlet temperature reduced to half of its design
value and then is restored to the steady state value after
thirty minutes.


Most of the equations needed to solve this problem can be
typed directly into POLYMATH without any modification.
But since POLYMATH is a general-purpose software pro-
gram, it does not have functions which are specific to the
control area, such as step, ramp, time delay, etc. Most of
these functions can be generated, however. The generation
of a step change at t = 1, for example, is accomplished by
the equation

(t 1) + abs (t 1)
step 2(t 1)+ 0.000001

This equation generates: step = 0 for t 1; step ~ 1 for t > 1.
The value 0.000001 is added to the denominator in order to
prevent division by zero when t = 1.
The integral of the error, required in Eq. (3a), is obtained
by solving the differential equation

d(esu TR TM; t=0, esum = 0 (5)

Pad6 approximation[6' p.1031 can be employed for represen-
tation of time delay. For instance, the first-order Padd ap-
e- ds dS/2)/(1 + dS / 2)

yields in the time domain a first-order differential equation
for the measured temperature

dT =TT d (dT)1 2
d T -To + )
dt -2 dt I Td

t = 0, T = TR (6)

Nonlinear and nonideal aspects can be demonstrated us-
ing the limits on the operation of the controller. The basic PI
controller may require negative or inaccessibly high posi-
tive values of heat input, q, for some combinations of con-
troller setting and magnitude of the step change in the input
temperature. Limits can be put on the variables using equa-
tions similar to Eq. (4). For example, the operation

q q + abs(q) (7)
gives qi = q if q 0; q = 0 otherwise.

1. Closed loop dynamics of the stirred tank heater
Figure 2 shows the mathematical model, numerical con-
stants, and initial values as they were entered into the
POLYMATH ODE solver program for the case where td =
1, K, = 10,000, KR = 0 (P-only controller) and a step change
of -200C in the feed is introduced at t = 1 sec. The options
available to the user at this point are also shown: they in-
clude solution or modification of the problem, storage in a
library, request for additional information regarding solu-
tion methods used, etc. If the "solve the problem" option is
selected, the equations are numerically integrated, and the
program selects either the explicit Euler or the 4th-order
Runge-Kutta method, according to the required accuracy.
For stiff systems, the user may ask to use the implicit Euler
method. All of these methods include algorithms for esti-
mating the integration error and changing step size if neces-
sary. Solution times may vary from several seconds (for a
PC without a math co-processor) to less than one second

The equations:
d(t enp)/d(t)=(ucm(ti-temp)+q)/r hove
d(tm)/d(t)=(temp-t i-(/2) xdtempdt) 2/l
q=10000lkc(t r-tl)+kr errsum
st ep=(t-l)+abs(t-lD)/(2m(-l)+0. 00001)
dt empdt=(ucw(ti- temip)-q)/rhovc
Initial values: 1O= 0.0, tenpo= 80.000 errsul= 0.0, imn= 80.000
Final value: 1 = 10.000

fr F7 to solve this problem.
4-'J to alter the problem. F6 for helpful information
F9 for file and library options. i0FIO for the MAIN MENU.

Figure 2. Mathematical model input to POLYMATH ODE
solver for Example 1.

Partial results
Uariable Initial value lax. value Fin. value Final value
t 0.0 10.000 0.0 10.000
temp 80.000 85.514 72.450 72.450
errsum 0.0 9.8250 -0.2722 5.5925
t 80.000 85.892 73.696 84.069
uc 500.00 500.00 500.00 500.00
rhovc 4000.0 4000.0 4000.0 4000.0
kc 0.100mlO 5 0.100105 0.10lOlO5 0.100l05
tr 80.000 80.000 80.000 80.000
kr 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
q 0. 100 l05 0.730il05 -0.48W9105 -0.3074105
step 0.0 1.000 0.0 1.000
11 60.000 60.000 40.000 40.000
dtempdt 0.0 13.298 -16.746 -11.728
log(error) ..
-4.0 innn n n _1. M-r n n n g nnr n.-.nnn
0.000 2.000 4.000 6.000 8.000 10.000
F9 to display results. (g,t,d active)
+4-1 to make changes. O F8 for neu problem. F6 for help

Figure 3. Partial results for Example 1.
Chemical Engineering Education

(for a computer with a co-processor).

Figure 3 shows a display of partial results which includes
a table of initial, minimal, maximal, and final values of all
the variables. Observing this table shows immediately that
the model is unrealistic since the heat input, q, becomes
negative at a particular point.
The bar chart near the bottom of the screen shown in

87.00 -

4a. No limit on A
heat supply 81.oo
T( C)


4b. Heat supply limited Bo.o
to positive values
T( C)
0.o00 2.000 4.000 6.000 8.000 o1.oo
t (min)
Figure 4. Response of the temperature in the stirred tank
to -20C step change in feed temperature.

Controller Tuning Using Astrom's "ATV" Method

(1) d(temp)/d(t)=dtempdt
(2) d(tm)/d(t)=(temp-tm-(tau/2)*dtempdt)*2/tau
(3) wc=500
(4) rhovc=4000
(5) err=81-tm
(6) h=4000
(7) ml=(err+abs(err))/(2*err+0.000001)
(8) m2=(err-abs(err))/(-2*err+0.000001)
(9) q=10000+h*ml+h*m2
(10) dtempdt= (wc*(60-temp)+q)/rhovc
(11) tau=l
t(0)= 0, temp(0)= 80, tm(0)= 80
t(f)= 10
This set of equations will generate the limit
cycle in the measured temperature using the
above method.
To observe the response with proportional
control when kc is set to the ultimate gain
change equations 5-12 as follows:
(5) d(errsum)/d(t)=tr-tm
(6) kc=8450
(7) tr=80
(8) kr=O
(9) q=10000+kc*(tr-tm)+kr*errsum
(10) ti=60-20
(11) dtempdt=(wc*(ti-temp)+q)/rhovc
(12) tau=l

and set errsum(0)=0.
To check the response with different kc and kr
settings change equations (6) and (8).

Figure 3 gives the history of the integration error. The infor-
mation in this chart can be used to assess the accuracy of the
results and reduce the final time if more accurate results are
needed. User options shown at the bottom include display as
well as change, storage, and retrieval options. The display
options include graphical ("g") or tabular ("t") presentation
and output of the results to a DOS file ("d"). If graphical
display of the temperature is selected, the graph shown in
Figure 4a appears, indicating that for the specified param-
eter values the response is indeed unstable.

The mathematical model can be made more realistic by
introducing Eq. (7) into it to prevent the heat input from
becoming negative. The growth rate of the oscillations is
more moderate in this case, as shown in Figure 4b, but the
system is still unstable.
This first part of the example problem can be used as an
introductory example in an undergraduate process control
course. Students can introduce changes to the system and
observe for the first time the difference between systems
with and without control, P vs. PI controller, effect of sys-
tem parameters (time constants, dead time) and can famil-
iarize themselves with the concepts of offset, stability, etc.
Most of these concepts are shown in the textbooks, but the
fact that the student can introduce the desired change and
immediately observe the results can contribute considerably
to an understanding of the material.

2. Controller tuning using Astrdm's "ATV" 8'method
When using this method, a relay of height, h, is inserted
as a feedback controller. This nonlinear controller will cause
the system to produce limit cycle of the controlled variable.
The relay type change of the manipulated variable is achieved
by two equations similar to Eq. (7) which generate (1,0) and
(-1,0) values according to the sign of the error. The equa-
tions typed into POLYMATH for this assignment are shown
in Table 1 for parameter values (td = 1; tm = 0). A small
change in the controller set-point is introduced (TR is in-
creased to 81C). The behavior of the manipulated and con-
trolled variable during the "ATV" procedure is shown in
Figure 5. The period of the limit cycle is the ultimate period
(Pu). Thus, the ultimate frequency is

u (8)
and the ultimate gain is
Ku 4 (9)
where a is the amplitude of the primary harmonic of the
The ultimate period and gain, as found above, can be used
with the standard tuning formulas. The process response to
a 33% step change in the inlet temperature obtained with a
PI controller tuned using the Ziegler-Nichols controller
settings'6'p.223] is shown in Figure 6.

Spring 1994

3. Reset Windup
The model equations for the case where the output from
the heater is limited and there is a substantial drop in the
inlet temperature are very similar to the system shown in
Figure 1, except that an equation similar to Eq. (7) has to be
added to limit the heater's output.
The simulation results show that the PI controller on the
heating coil will cause the heat output to reach its maximal
value shortly after the inlet temperature is reduced. Since
the heat output is not enough for reaching the set-point
temperature, the error term in the integral part of the con-
troller continues to increase until the inlet temperature is
restored to its steady-state value. Because of this accumu-
lated error term, the controller keeps the heat supply at its
maximum long after the restoration of the inlet temperature.
This causes the outlet temperature to reach a much higher
value than the set point, as shown in Figure 7a.
Many industrial controllers have anti-windup provisions.
This feature can be demonstrated in this example by switch-
ing off the error accumulation when the required heat sup-
ply exceeds the bounds. The outlet temperature response is
shown in Figure 7b. In this case the outlet temperature will
rapidly reach the set-point value, after the inlet temperature
is restored to the steady-state value.

Dynamics of a Nonlinear Liquid-Level System
The liquid-level control system is frequently used in pro-
cess control textbooks to demonstrate the difference be-
tween linear and nonlinear systemsli.e.6,p72] where emphasis
is put on linearization of the nonlinear system around the
steady state.
For this example, consider the system, shown in Figure
8, which consists of a tank of constant cross sectional area,
A, into which a valve with flow resistance characteristics,
qo(t) = ch/2, is attached, where h is the liquid level in the
tank and c is a constant. The flow rate into the tank, q, varies
with time.
The following numerical and steady-state values are ap-

A=lft2; c=20ft2.5/min; qs=60cfm; h,=9ft

Using these numerical values, the response of the system to
small and large (up to 90%) step changes in the inlet flow-
rate should be observed and the response using the non-
linear and linearized model should be compared.

The equation representing the liquid-level system is

q -ch2 = A (10)
The equation can be linearized around the steady state

h h dh
(q- qs)- sh- -A (11)
R, dt

where R = 2hs'2 /c.

Equations (10) and (11) can be introduced into the
POLYMATH ODE solver with only slight modification.
The response to reduction of the inlet flow to 10 cfm is
shown in Figure 9.
We know that linearlzation is likely to yield close ap-
proximation of the dynamics of the system near the state
around which the linearization is done. Indeed, when there
is a 10% change in the inlet flow, responses of the nonlinear
and linearized systems are very similar. The initial slope is
the same, and the difference between the process gains that
are calculated using the two models is only 5%. But using
the linearized model far from the steady state may give very
unreasonable results. If, for example, the tank's wall is much
higher than the steady-state level and one tries to predict the
maximal inlet flowrate that can be used without tank over-
flow, the difference between the predictions by the two
models can be considerable. An even more interesting result
occurs when the inlet flowrate is drastically reduced-the
linearized model may predict a negative level at the new
steady state, which is of course impossible. Such is the

I t(min)
Figure 5. Change of the manipulated variable and the
controlled variable in "ATV" tuning.



79.20 -
T (C)


76.80 O
0.000 3.000 6.000 9.000 12.000 15.000
t (min)

Figure 6. Response of the heating tank with PI controller
and Ziegler-Nichols settings.
Chemical Engineering Education

5a. Manipulated
variable 1.100
(q*10 -4) 0.900
5b. Controlled eB.40
variable (Tn) am.oo

situation in Figure 9. The nonlinear model predicts the new
steady-state level as 0.25 ft and the linearized model pre-
dicts -6 ft as the new level.
It should be noted that reducing the flowrate even further
may cause difficulties with even the nonlinear model. Be-
cause of integration errors, h may become a small negative
number, which makes it impossible to calculate the h"2 term.
This can be prevented by putting a limit on h by applying an
equation similar to Eq. (7). The same method can be used
when the linearized model is solved by numerical simula-
tion, but not when it is solved analytically.
A comparison of the nonlinear and linearized solutions by
students should reinforce the following conclusions:
SIt is important to remember the difference between a sys-

7a. No limit on 9900
integral error 93.00
69.00 I

7b. Limit on
integral error so. 0
T (C) --
0.oo 00oo loo 00000 l o .oo 5o.00oo
t (min)

Figure 7. Outlet temperature in the heated tank with and
without limit on the integral error.

q (t)

.- nonlinear
h (t) /

) q0 (t)

Figure 8. Liquid-level system with nonlinear resistance.

.0o 1- Nonlinear model
2- Linearized model
h (ft)0.00

-6.00 l -
0.000 0.600 1.200 1.800 2.400 3.000
t (min)

Figure 9. Response of liquid level to reduction of the inlet
flow rate to 10 cfm.
Spring 1994

tem which can be represented by a linear model and linear-
ization of a nonlinear model. Linearization can represent
the system well only near the point of linearization.
It is always advisable to compare results from the nonlinear
and linearized models in order to be able to appreciate the
magnitude of error introduced by linearization.
Results obtained from computer solution must always be
carefully checked. Equations used outside the bounds of
their validity, or numerical integration errors, may lead to
incorrect or even absurd results.

We have demonstrated several interesting applications of
an interactive ODE simulation program in this paper. Expe-
rience has shown the following important benefits of using
such programs in process control:
1. There are many aspects of dynamic process behavior
that can be studied only by using nonlinear models
that include, for example, limits on variables.
2. Interactive simulation complements analytical meth-
ods very nicely by ensuring better understanding and
allowing more realistic problems to be considered.
3. The strengths and weaknesses of analytical solutions
and numerical simulation can be clearly demonstrated.
This is important in particular when linearizing non-
linear equations where the restrictions of the linear-
ized model must be well understood.
The examples and exercises given in Figure 1 and Table 1
can be put into immediate use in the classroom. Additional
examples of applying an ODE solver for comparing analyti-
cal and numerical solutions and for more complex phenom-
enon could not be included in this paper because of space
limitations. Information on these examples can be obtained
from any one of the authors.

1. Edgar, T.F., "Process Control Education in the Year 2000,"
Chem. Eng. Ed., 24, 72 (1990)
2. Koppel, L.B., and G.R. Sullivan, "Use of IBM's Advanced
Control System in Undergraduate Process Control Educa-
tion," Chem. Eng. Ed., 20, 70 (1986)
3. Buxton, B., "Impact of Packaged Software for Process Con-
trol and Chemical Engineering Education and Research,"
Chem. Eng. Ed., 19, 144 (1985)
4. Shacham, M., and M.B. Cutlip, "A Simulation Package for
the PLATO System," Computers and Chem. Eng., 6, 209
5. Foss, A.S., "UC ONLINE: Berkeley's Multiloop Computer
Control Program," Chem. Eng. Ed., 21, 122 (1987)
6. Coughanowr, D.R., Process Systems Analysis and Control,
McGraw-Hill Book Co., New York (1991)
7. Hittner, P.M., and D.B. Greenberg, "We Can Do Process
Simulation: UCAN-II," Chem. Eng. Ed., 14, 138 (1980)
8. Astrdm and Hagglund, Proceedings of the 1983 IFAC Con-
ference, San Francisco, CA (1983)
9. Smith, C.A., and A.B. Corripio, Principles and Practice of
Automatic Process Control, John Wiley & Sons, New York
(1985) O

class and home problems

The object of this column is to enhance our readers' collection of interesting and novel problems in
chemical engineering. Problems of the type that can be used to motivate the student by presenting a
particular principle in class, or in a new light, or that can be assigned as a novel home problem, are
requested, as well as those that are more traditional in nature and which elucidate difficult concepts. Please
submit them to Professors James O. Wilkes and Mark A. Burns, Chemical Engineering Department, Univer-
sity of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Ml 48109-2136.





Universidad de Antofagasta
Casilla 170, Antofagasta, Chile
ass-balance applications and a good level of phase-
equilibrium knowledge, among other things, are
required for a full understanding of brine-crystal-
lization phenomena. Brine multi-component systems are
complex, and phase diagrams are useful tools for explaining
their behavior and designing crystallization processes. In
the problem presented here, mass balances and phase-equi-
librium criteria are combined to solve a practical application
that is suitable for classroom presentation.

Maria E. Taboada is an assistant professor of
chemical engineering at the University of
Antofagasta. She received her BTech (1980)
from the Universidad Catdlica del Norte and
her MS (1989) from the Universidad de Chile.
Her areas of interest are in process crystalli-

Teofilo A. Graber is an associate professor in
chemical engineering at the University of
Antofagasta. He received his BTech (1975) from
the Universidad T6cnica del Estado and his
MS (1988) from the Universidad de Chile. His
research interests are in chemical processes.
@ Copyright ChE Division of ASEE 1994

A chemical plant is being planned for the manufacture of
anhydrous sodium sulphate in crystalline form, starting from
a saturated aqueous solution at a temperature of 25C. For
process-design purposes, we have available a binary solu-
bility diagram for Na2SO4-H20,'" and a ternary solubility
diagram for Na2SO4-NaCl-H20 at 250C.[2] From the avail-
able information, suggest different alternatives for the pro-
duction process, indicating in each case the final mass of
anhydrous sodium sulphate, based on 1,000 kg of feed solu-

Three processes for obtaining the desired result will now
be presented.

Cool, then dry crystals.
As shown in Figure 1, point F denotes the feed solution at
250C. The overall process is shown diagrammatically in
Figure 2. The cooling process, which ends at 50C, is repre-
sented by the line Fa. Point a is in the two-phase zone, with
points b and c representing the solution and crystal phase,
An initial solution of mass F = 1,000 kg is considered.
Total substrate and total mass balances then give
Chemical Engineering Education

F=S+C (1)
FXF = SXs+CXc (2) 60
Here, C and S are the masses of the crystal
and solution, respectively. so
From Figure 1, the following mass fraction
values, denoted by X with appropriate sub-
scripts, are obtained:
(a) XF = 0.22
(b) Xs =0.06 20
(c) Xc = 0.44
The amount of the decahydrated sodium 10
sulphate mass can be calculated from a com-
bination of Eqs. (1) and (2): o
C = 421 kg Na2SO4 10 H20
As anhydrous crystals are the desired final o
product, Na2SO4-10H20 must be subjected to
a drying process, resulting in 185 kg of
Na2SO4. Most impurities that are present in the initial
solution will remain in the mother liquor.

Heat, then vacuum evaporate
The overall process is presented in Figure 3. The ini-
tial solution is first heated to 400, and then, under vacuum
evaporation, 90% of the water is eliminated. Referring
to Figure 1, F is again the starting point, and Fd and dg
represent the heating and evaporation steps, respectively.
If V denotes the mass of the water evaporated, the total
mass balance is
F=S+C+V (3)
The solute balance is similar to Eq. (2), although the
mass values are different. Considering that the mass of
evaporated water is 90%, then V = 702 kg. A combina-
tion of Eqs. (2) and (3) then gives

FX, = (F C E)Xs + CXc (4)
Since anhydrous salt is the end product of this process,
Xc = 1. The corresponding saturated solution is desig-
nated by point e, so that Xs = 0.33. The mass of Na2SO4
crystal is C = 181.6 kg. Again, most impurities remain
in the mother liquor.

Add NaCl to crystallize

As a third option, summarized in Figure 5, the same
initial saturated solution F is mixed with sodium chlo-
ride at 25C, this salt and aqueous system now being
represented by the ternary diagram of Figure 4. Refer-
ring to Figure 4, the selected process is a result of mix-
ing the initial solution F with sodium chloride, produc-
ing a two-phase mixture represented by the point p. The
two components of this mixture are a saturated solution
Spring 1994

Figure 3. Flowsheet Alternative 2

Figure 1. Phase Equilibrium Na2SO4 H20



Figure 2. Flowsheet Alternative 1

25 'C

s and crystallized sodium sulphate. Point p
should be as close as possible to the tieline
b-Na2SO4, in order to obtain a maximum
amount of crystals, which is proportional to
the ratio

sp / pNa2SO4
The final point p in Figure 4 must fall
within the two-phase area a-b-Na2SO4, de-
noted as "y"; in this way the amount of salt to
cause crystallization can be determined. This
process, in which a third component is added
to displace the saline equilibrium, is termed
The mass-balance calculations are made
from Figure 4 by the center-of-gravity or
ratio-scale-moment method.l3 The mass N of
sodium chloride that is required can be cal-
culated by considering the proportionality be-
tween the masses of the streams, giving

N= Fp (5)

In Figure 4, the line-segment ratio
Fp / pNaCl is 0.234. Thus, the required mass
of sodium chloride is 234 kg, and, consider-
ing a total mass balance, the mass P of the
solution at point p is obtained:
P=F+N= 1,234kg (6)

By a similar procedure, the mass C of Na2SO4 crystal
can be obtained as follows:

C= sNaSO = 128 kg (7)
C sNa2SO4

The creativity of the student is stimulated as a result
of examining the different strategies for obtaining so-
dium sulphate by various alternative combinations of
unit operations. For each such alternative, there are as-
sociated mass balances and phase-equilibrium equations,
and operating conditions such as temperature, composition,
and total mass of product. In order to discover the best
alternative, this problem can be extended by the further use
of energy balances, equipment design, and economic evalu-
In the chemical engineering department at the University
of Antofagasta, it is normal practice to give homework prob-
lems involving the development of mass and energy bal-
ances, to be verified later in the Crystallization Labora-
tory.14] Finally, it is important to note that the design of this
problem corresponds to a general policy regarding a link

Figure 5. Flowsheet Alternative 3

between industrial reality in the North of
chemical engineering curriculum.

Chile and the

1. Hougen, O.A., K.M. Watson, and R.A. Ragatz, Chemical
Process Principles: Part I. Material and Energy Balances,
Wiley & Sons Inc., New York, NY (1975)
2. Seidell, A., Solubilities: Inorganic and Metal-Organic Com-
pounds, American Chemical Society, Washington, DC (1965)
3. Bryant, F., "How to Design Fractional Crystallization Pro-
cesses," Ind. Eng. Chem., 62(12) (1970)
4. Graber, T.A., and M.E. Taboada, "Crystallization: An Inter-
esting Experience in the ChE Laboratory," Chem. Eng. Ed.,
25(2) (1991) D
Chemical Engineering Education



= Na2SOt4 Na2SO4 10H20 SOLUTION a

Figure 4. Phase Equilibrium NaC1 Na2SO HO2

(H20 .NaCI Na2SO4 I

S25 IO

F, XF 5 D
2 ,C

Continued from page 115.

expands his or her understanding of the subject. "Simulation
Graphics" does both. Not only are the tedious details of
manual graphic design eliminated, but also the scope of
assignable problems is greatly increased, even to include
open-ended examples where students must search through
many solutions to satisfy a constraint or find some opti-
An advantage also arises from exposing students to com-
puter-based visualization. Chemical engineering has moved
less rapidly than other engineering fields to capitalize on the
enormous conceptual boost offered by visual thinking-
particularly in the classroom.[15] Visualization models abound
in thermodynamics, in transport phenomena, in reactor de-
sign, and in other core areas of the discipline.[16-18] This
application to graphical models of staged processes is a
natural and significant step toward accelerating that move-

Over seventy years ago, Marcel Ponchon[l] described his
graphical method for binary distillation design. His intro-
ductory remarks, translated in part below, are as valid today
as they were then. The efforts reported here and by those
working before us have attempted to make those ideas more
accessible through modern computer graphics.
The theory of distillation columns is rather complex,
requiring long and difficult calculations. But it is possible,
without going into the theory, to replace those calculations
with graphical constructions that permit the solution of a
rather large number of problems.

Support for this work came from Iowa State University,
Union Carbide, and the Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foun-
dation. Janet Rohler Greisch edited this paper and managed
its production through the Engineering Publication and Com-
munication Services in the College of Engineering. Kurt
Plagge and Kurt Whitmore prepared the figures.

1. Ponchon, M., "Etude Graphique de la Distillation
Fractionn6e Industrielle," La Technique Moderne, XIII, 20,
53 (1921)
2. Savarit, R., Arts et Metiers, 65, 142, 178, 241, 266, 307
3. McCabe, W.L., and E.W. Thiele, Ind. Eng. Chem., 17, 605
4. Gaskill, W.C., "Analog/Hybrid Simulations in Chemical En-
gineering Education," MS thesis, Dept. of Chem. Eng., Iowa
State University, Ames, IA (1979)
5. Calo, J.M., and R.P. Andres, Computers and Chem. Eng.,
5(4), 197 (1981)

6. Golnaraghi, M., P. Clancy, and K.E. Gubbins, Chem. Eng.
Ed., 19(3), 132 (1985)
7. Kooijman, H., and R. Taylor, CACHE News, 35, 1, The
CACHE Corp., Austin, TX, Fall (1992)
8. Fogler, H.S., and S.M. Montgomery, CACHE News, 37, 1,
The CACHE Corp., Austin, TX, Fall (1993)
9. Seader, J.D., W.D. Seider, and A.C. Pauls, Flowtran Simu-
lation: An Introduction, 3rd ed., CACHE Corp., Austin, TX
10. Treybal, R.E., Mass-Transfer Operations, 3rd ed., McGraw-
Hill, New York, NY (1980)
11. Kremser, A., Nat. Petrol. News, p. 43, May 30 (1930)
12. Wankat, P.C., Equilibrium Staged Operations, Elsevier, New
York, NY (1988)
13. Gmehling, J., U. Onken, and W. Arlt, "Vapor-Liquid Equi-
librium Data Collection," Vol. 1, Part 2b, DECHEMA (1978)
14. Walker, J., and A. Karlsen, "Continued Development of
'Simulation Graphics,'" undergraduate research projects,
Dept. of Chem. Eng., Iowa State University, Ames, IA; in
15. Reklaitis, G.V., R.S.H. Mah, and T.F. Edgar, "Computer
Graphics in the ChE Curriculum," The CACHE Corpora-
tion, Austin, TX (1983)
16. Jolls, K.R., M.C. Schmitz, and D.C. Coy, The Chemical
Engineer, No. 497, p. 42, May 30 (1991)
17. Charos, G.N., P. Clancy, K.E. Gubbins, and C.D. Naik,
Fluid Phase Equilibria, 23(1), 59 (1985)
18. Bird, R.B., personal communication 0

BOOK REVIEW: Networking
Continued from page 119
presented conceptual frameworks that help the reader to
grasp why NETWORKING is so vital in today's rapidly
changing and diverse environment, what needs to be done to
be an effective NETWORKER, and how to develop their
own NETWORKING prowess.
Many of the NETWORKING principles can come fairly
easily to gregarious, highly self-motivated and self-confi-
dent people. However, for the other (-) 95% of us, the idea
of initiating contact with friends, neighbors, friends of
friends-perfect strangers!-can be intimidating to the point
of paralysis! This book can help anyone muster the courage
and conviction to become an effective NETWORKER.
Some people will prefer to work through this book on
their own. Others will realize greater benefit by working
with a partner or in groups (e.g., AIChE). The reader should
have time to contemplate many of the ideas presented and to
complete the recommended assignments in order to maxi-
mize full learning potential. Dialog, discussion, and sharing
ideas with others should also prove beneficial.
In summary, NETWORKING is an important life skill for
all of us. This book will prove very valuable to everyone
who reads it. It should be required by those responsible for
educating young people who are preparing to enter the pro-
fessional world. O

Spring 1994




State University of New York at Buffalo
Buffalo, NY 14260

any undergraduate curriculum committees around
the country are seeking to create science and en
gineering requirements in university curricula
which were liberalized during the 1960s when technical
requirements were the first to go."' National recognition that
science and engineering classes are worthwhile for all un-
dergraduates has created a renewed demand for these courses.
The widening gap of technical literacy between science or
engineering majors and non-science majors is due, in part,
to preexisting academic and administrative structures. In
fact, the National Science Foundation has identified the de-
velopment of "mechanisms to enhance the technological
literacy of all students" as an important goal. The challenge
is to create nontrivial engineering courses which
Emphasize the basic tenants and practice of science,
engineering, and technology without loss of technical
Are suitable for nonscience majors who attend the
Are intellectually stimulating for the students and in-
Engineering schools seeking to contribute to the univer-
sity-wide educational mission should consider a course in
biotechnology-a subject that naturally attracts students. As
issues of health care costs become ever more critical, the
general population strives to understand the pharmaceutical
and biotechnology industries. Similarly, these industries are
likely interested in communicating their activities and new
products to a consumer who is educated and is not fearful of
The course described in this paper has proven successful
with non-science majors, engineers in general, and our own
chemical engineering undergraduates. Contrary to expecta-
tions, the technical course was of interest to a university-
wide audience. This past spring we attracted twenty-three
juniors and seniors from non-science majors ranging across

Scott L. Diamond is an assistant professor at
the State University of New York at Buffalo. He
received his BS from Cornell University and his
PhD from Rice University in 1990. His research
interests include mechanobiological coupling in
mammalian cells, optimization of thrombolytic
therapies, and biomedical engineering.

Arnold I. Kozak is a doctoral candidate in the
Department of Psychology at the State Univer-
sity of New York at Buffalo. His research inter-
Sests include metaphors and world views in learn-
ing, case method teaching, and psychotherapy.

the university: performing arts, management, economics,
history, and legal studies.
Recognizing the novel makeup of this class, we carefully
selected and tailored topics from our standard senior-level
biochemical engineering course to suit non-majors who had
little scientific background. As an overall goal, we wanted
the students to understand in detail how biotechnology af-
fects their lives in areas ranging from health care decisions
to selections at the grocery store. We felt that issues such as
AIDS, animal rights, and genetically engineered foods were
relevant and would be interesting to this broad base of stu-
dents. These topics served as a suitable "vector" to commu-
nicate scientific and engineering information such as viral
genetics, recombinant DNA technology, large-scale phar-
maceutical production, as well as experimental design and
statistics. Along the way, important biotechnologies were
presented, such as: immunodiagnostics and hybridoma cul-
ture, genetic diagnostics (DNA fingerprinting and PCR analy-
sis), production and clinical testing of recombinant proteins,
and agricultural biotechnology.

Copyright ChE Division ofASEE 1994

Chemical Engineering Education

A novel approach we used in this course was avoiding the
traditional lecture format. Instead, we used a Case Study/
Group Learning approach1251--with much success, judging
from student participation. The course outline is given in
Table 1. Each case provided a framework in which students
immediately understood the real world application of the
technology. In this context, the material seemed less ab-
stract, less intimidating, and more comprehensible.
At the beginning of the course, students were divided into
permanent groups of four to six students each. As groups,
they had to analyze raw data sets using their knowledge of
the technical information, experimental design, and statis-
tics. Before each case study a mini-lecture was given to
expand on key concepts. Mini-lectures given during the first
few weeks of the course included discussions of DNA-RNA-
protein biochemistry, cell division, the human immune re-
sponse, and antibodies. Throughout the entire course, em-
phasis on the applications of biotechnology made it identifi-
able as an engineering course as opposed to a pure science
course. These real world applications, in part, helped en-
hance the students' willingness to work with such new tech-
nical concepts.
We covered cases which highlighted particular technolo-
gies or sciences of the biotechnology industry. The first case
study was the use of enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay
(ELISA) and Western blotting to detect HIV-associated an-
tigens in human blood. Students debated a cost-benefit analy-
sis of employer testing of employees"61 and evaluated the
effects of false-positives on the analysis. This case was an
excellent example of a naturally occurring biological mol-

Spring 1994

ecule (an antibody) serving as a basis for a commercial
application. Throughout the course, students repeatedly saw
this paradigm of biomolecule discovery, characterization of
structure and function, and final utilization of the biomolecule
as a foundation for a technology. As the first case of the
course, students extended their preexisting knowledge of
viruses, immune response, and antibodies into new areas of
measurement and detection of viral antigens. The case also
reinforced the basic fundamental concepts of proteins, cells,
and viruses which were to be used later in the course.
To give an example of a more involved case study (which
required four class sections of eighty minutes each), we
explored recombinant CD4 (reCD4) therapy as a treatment
against AIDS.7'-10 After hearing mini-lectures on retroviruses
and receptor-ligand binding, students working in groups had
to develop strategies for manufacturing a significant quan-
tity of reCD4, design in vitro testing methodologies for
evaluating reCD4 efficacy, and design a protocol for a Phase
I trial. They had to apply their basic understanding of ex-
pression systems and protein purification/characterization
toward an end goal of conducting a Phase I trial with reCD4.
Although topics of bioreactor and separation design were
not suited for non-engineering majors, we discussed the
manufacturing techniques at a level corresponding to an
introductory chemical engineering course. As part of this
case study the groups had to conduct a statistical analysis of
raw data reported from real Phase I and II trials.['7'8
By the end of the case study, students had some sense of
how in vitro data and in vivo data could be in conflict.[9]
They identified the sources of high costs associated with
drug design and FDA approval. Through this case study, the
learning process moved from the scien-
tific observation that the HIV viral coat
protein gp120 binds the T-cell membrane
protein CD4 to the hypothesis that soluble
CD4 may interfere with HIV virulence.
To test the hypothesis required the manu-
facture and purification of reCD4, in vitro
testing, and the design of Phase I trial.
At each stage of the discussion, the goal
of drug design and AIDS treatment was
appreciated by the students. A challenge
for the students was deciding how to test
CD4 given the existence of an FDA-ap-
proved reverse transcriptase inhibitor AZT.
The benefits of AZT are transient and the
use of placebo control groups would not
likely be tolerated by AIDS patients en-
rolling in a clinical trial."101
Another case study in DNA fingerprint-
ing involved the use of Restriction Frag-
ment Length Polymorphism (RFLP) analy-
sis of VNTRs (variable number of tandem

As an overall goal, we wanted the students to understand in detail
how biotechnology affects their lives in areas ranging from health care decisions to selections at the
grocery store. We felt that issues such as AIDS, animal rights, and genetically engineered
foods were relevant and would be interesting to this broad base of students.

repeat) to examine forensic evidence obtained at a rape
crime scene and from potential suspects. A mini-lecture on
DNA hybridization probes, chromosomal structure, and the
human genome set the stage for this problem. The students
reviewed copies of the autoradiographs that the jury saw in
a real trial* of a 1985 rape/murder case in Arlington, Texas.1'"
Issues of reagent quality control, interpretation of DNA
bandshifting, and state regulation of RFLP became quite
important in making final judgments using evidence that
was originally claimed to identify a rapist with 1-in-50 bil-
lion certainty.
Also covered in this case was the rapidly expanding tech-
nology of Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) for DNA am-
plification. Chapters from the National Research Council on
DNA Technology in Forensic Science"21 were very clear
and useful for the students. Other forensic cases were drawn
from the literature."31 Although forensic DNA analysis is
not a typical research area in chemical engineering, the case
study was an exciting way of teaching about the human
genome and the molecular biology techniques frequently
used in biotechnology. With this appreciation of human
chromosome structure, other topics such as the human ge-
nome project or patenting genes[141 could easily be covered.
The next case focused on blood clot dissolving therapy
using recombinant tissue plasminogen activator (tPA). Again,
students saw this pattern of a naturally occurring molecule
being used as the foundation for an entire industry. Tissue
plasminogen activator (whose functionality was described
decades ago) was cloned in E. coli using reDNA tech-
niques in 1983 and then expressed in CHO cells by
Genentech for clinical trials. As part of this case study,
students had to identify the limitations of in vitro testing
of these recombinant compounds. They also had to design
experimental protocols for the humane testing of recombi-
nant blood clot dissolvers in animal models to gain data
unattainable by in vitro tests.
Moving toward examples from agricultural biotechnol-
ogy, we used a case study on bovine growth hormone (bgh)
also known as bovine somatotropin (BST). This is an excel-
lent example highlighting the role of societal influences on
the ultimate use and acceptance of a biotechnology prod-
uct."5'161 Students had to debate the issues and write position
papers from the points of view of the FDA, the consumer,
the farmer, and the agricultural business. The use of bgh has
been shown to be generally safe and effective for elevating
* Courtesy of Dr. Randall Shortridge, Department of Biological
Sciences, SUNY at Buffalo

milk production and improving the efficiency of production,
but dairy cows with high milk production, regardless of bgh
use, tend to have more infections of the udder mastitiss).
This case reinforced previous understanding of gene clon-
ing, expression systems, and receptor-mediated events of
cell regulation by hormones. By this point in the semester,
students readily appreciated the distinction between scien-
tific information (bgh and human growth hormone effects
on humans), scientifically based disputes such as increased
bovine mastitis and antibiotic feeding, unsupported claims,
and economic issues-matters which are typically jumbled
together in media coverage.
The final case study of the course was on the use of
antisense RNA technology for preventing tomato spoilage.
A mini-lecture on energy metabolism in cells and the auto-
catalytic rise of ethylene production in ripening tomatoes
helped formulate the problem. In this case, expression of
antisense RNA against the rate-limiting enzyme ACC
synthase was used to block ethylene synthesis and subse-
quent ripening in tomatoes.[71 The class discussed the safety
of a transgenic plant and formulated some guidelines by
which safety could be evaluated.'"8 Through this case, is-
sues of biochemical metabolism and gene regulation can be
covered in a context which is easily approached by students.

We structured the course in a group-learning context mod-
eled on a team-learning approach developed by Dr. Larry
Michaelson at the University of Oklahoma."13 The group
structure consists of permanent small groups, group exam
taking, and group-based assignments in the application phase
of each case study. In addition to their group work, students
also complete individual tests and assignments. Grading was
based on group and individual performance in addition to
peer evaluation. Although unusual to the students at first,
they quickly learned to value the knowledge base of their
peers and realized that the group's understanding of the
material greatly exceeded the knowledge of any individual
member. When students took the exam individually and
then in the groups, the mean on the group exams was typi-
cally 15% points higher than the mean on the individual
exam. Larger and broader assignments were given for group
work, but care was taken to avoid assignments which could
be easily partitioned by the groups, thus circumventing the
goal of the group work. Perhaps it is too early to tell whether
group-based learning is an educational fad or is relevant to
the problem-solving orientation of the chemical engineering
Chemical Engineering Education

curriculum. It is common for our seniors to cite their senior-
year design project (a group experience) as a key element in
their education. In this sense, chemical engineers have had
group learning as part of the curriculum for years.
One challenge presented by the group approach assures
equitable contributions from each member. Groups will in-
variably have at least one individual who tries to avoid
doing work and at least one or two martyrs who are willing
to carry the burden. The team-learning approach has a built-
in system for peer evaluation.3 5] From the first, students
were told that a percentage of their course grade would be
determined by the evaluation of their peers in their groups.
This mechanism tends to reinforce group participation and
is a natural self-policing mechanism that allows the groups
to function without intervention from the instructor. In our
experience, the Peer Evaluation at the end of the semester is
an important motivation for the students
to take their group work seriously, and
it also has the indirect benefit of pro-
moting high rates of attendance. In con-
trast to other general education courses
typical at a large university (which may
have attendance levels under 50%), we
had attendance rates of 85-90%.

We were interested in formally evalu-
ating student attitudes toward science,
engineering, technology, and knowledge
of terms and concepts relevant to scien-
tific inquiry. Perhaps the most difficult
aspect of introducing novel course ma-
terial and a nontraditional teaching format (whether it be
group learning or computers) is to evaluate the impact of the
approach on student learning. We conducted extensive sur-
veys during the first and last week of the course to ascertain
these variables. This was carried out as a part of a larger
university-wide evaluation of science education at The State
University of New York at Buffalo, funded by a grant from
the Fund for the Improvement of Post-Secondary Education
(FIPSE). The survey battery administered to the students

Scientific Process Survey developed at the State
University of New York at Buffalo under a FIPSE
grant (C. Herreid, 1992, pers. comm.)
World View Survey (Organicism-Mechanism
Paradigm Inventory by Germer, Efran, and
Scientific Attitude Survey developed at the
University of Oregon under FIPSE and NSF grants
(Morris, 1992, pers. comm.)
Scientific Literacy Survey (A. Kozak, J. Meacham,

and C. Herreid, in preparation, as modified from
A.B. Champagne'20')

The most marked changes were found in content-based
knowledge (see Table 2). The Scientific Process Survey
contained fifty terms and phrases that fall into three catego-
ries: experimental design, statistics, and the process of sci-
ence. Students were asked to assess their knowledge of each
term on a scale from 1 to 5, with 5 being the most familiar
with the term. The mean for all items at the beginning of
the course was 3.02-this corresponds to a level of under-
standing where students understand the idea vaguely. At the
end of the term the mean for all the items was 3.83, corre-
sponding to a level of understanding where students feel
they have a pretty good understanding about the idea.
Twenty-three of the fifty items had changed significantly
over the course of the term (p < 0.05).
Analyzing the items in the three cat-
egories also revealed significant dif-
ferences (see Table 2).
The World View Survey was a
measure of the student's world view
that is polarized between a holistic
(context-based) and a mechanistic way
of looking at the world. We found that,
on average, the class had a slightly
holistic world view at the first week
of the course which did not change
significantly over the term of the
course. These results were consistent
with other university groups at The
State University of New York.
The Scientific Attitudes Survey had forty-eight items
organized into the following six categories: science as a
theory-building vs. data-gathering activity; basic vs. applied
research; scientists as moral/amoral beings; usefulness of
science in everyday life; abilities needed for success in sci-
ence classes; personal ability to succeed in science class.
We found that class averages in each of the six categories
were very similar to other university student populations.
These averages did not change during the course.
The Scientific Literacy Survey contained forty items
relating to behaviors relevant to a scientifically literate
adult. Students were asked to rate how valuable each of
these items are. The scientific literacy items that students
most valued were interpreting graphs, defining terms, ap-
plying scientific information in personal decision making,
being able to evaluate medical claims, engaging in a scien-
tifically informed discussion, and locating scientific or tech-
nological information. These were still their priorities at
the end of the semester.
Overall, we believe that students' perceptions toward sci-
ence and science education change as they become more

Spring 1994

familiar with the basic terms, ideas, and processes of sci-
ence. One way to promote positive attitudes of non-majors
toward science and engineering is to teach these topics more
effectively. The case-study/group-learning approach used in
this course may be a suitable method to achieve that goal.

By the end of the course, students had a general under-
standing of the breadth of the biotechnology industry, from
pharmaceuticals to agriculture. They had a basic familiarity
with recombinant DNA techniques, large-scale expression
and purification of proteins, and product testing. By dis-
cussing how biotechnology companies operate in a scien-
tific, legal, and economic environment, students became
interested in material not normally accessible to them. The
use of case studies made the material approachable and
more easily comprehended, organized, and remembered. The
group work allowed for much of the scientific learning to
occur beyond the borders of the classroom. By the end of
the semester, biotechnology no longer seemed like a brave
new world to these students-they occasionally brought in
their own newspaper clippings and provided insightful com-
mentary on the technology or criticisms of the reporting.
This type of course is especially important in the context
of the lack of scientific literacy among college students.121-23]
The students not only learned important aspects of biotech-
nology, but also learned to appreciate and understand the
process of science and engineering, especially as it affects
their lives. We consider this an improvement over the "list
of facts" approach[24-261 of defining scientific literacy (e.g.,
references 21, 27, 28) Also, it would be difficult for a uni-
versity faculty to decide exactly what list to use.1291 Indeed,
our students indicated that those aspects of science with
personal relevance and application were the most valuable
to them. Designing courses for general education students
with engineering content will be best achieved if the course
design integrates both a content and a process focus.

1. The Liberal Art of Science: Agenda for Action, American
Association for the Advancement of Science (1990)
2. Welty, W.M., "Discussion Method Teaching," Chase: The
Magazine of Higher Learning, p. 41 (1989)
3. Michaelson, L.K., and W.E. Watson, "Grading and Anxiety:
A Strategy for Coping," Exchange: The Organizational Be-
havior Teaching Journal, 6, 32 (1981)
4. Michaelson, L., W.E. Watson, and C.B. Shrader, "Informa-
tive Testing: A Practical Approach to Tutoring with Groups,"
J. of the Organizational Behavior Teaching Soc., 9, 18 (1984)
5. Feichtner, S.B., and E.A. Davis, "Why Some Groups Fail: A
Survey of Students' Experience with Learning Groups," The
Organizational Behavior and Teaching Rev., 9, 58 (1985)
6. Bloom, D.E., and S. Glied, "Benefits and Costs of HIV Test-
ing," Science, 252, 1798 (1991)
7. Husson, R.N., et al., "Phase I Study of Continuous-Infusion
Soluble CD4 as a Single Agent and in Combination with

Oral DDI Therapy in Children with Symptomatic HIV In-
fection," J. Pediatrics, 121, 627 (1992)
8. Groopman, J.E., "Treatment of AIDS with Combinations of
Antiretroviral Agents: A Summary," Amer. J. Med., 90, 27
9. Gomatos, P.J., et al., "Relative Inefficiency of Soluble Re-
combinant CD4 for Inhibition of Infection by Monocyte-
Tropic HIV in Monocytes and T Cells," J. Immunology, 144,
4183 (1990)
10. Nussbaum, B., Good Intentions, Penquin Books, New York,
NY (1990)
11. Whitley, G., "Technology vs. Trimboli," Dallas Mag., p. 69
12. DNA Technology in Forensic Science, National Academy
Press, National Research Council, Washington DC (1992)
13. Jeffreys, A.J., J.F.Y. Brookfield, and R. Semeonoff, "Posi-
tive Identification of an Immigration Test-Case Using Hu-
man DNA Fingerprints," Nature, 317, 818 (1985)
14. Eisenberg, R.S., "Genes, Patents, and Product Development,"
Science, 257, 903 (1992)
15. Daughaday, W.H., and D.M. Barbano, "Bovine Somatotropin
Supplementation of Dairy Cows: Is the Milk Safe?" JAMA,
264(8), 1003 (1991)
16. Grumbach, M.M., et al., "NIH Technology Assessment Con-
ference Statement on Bovine Somatotropin," JAMA, 265(11),
1423 (1991)
17. Oeller, P.W., L. Min-Wong, L.P. Taylor, D.A. Pike, and A.
Theologis, "Reversible Inhibition of Tomato Fruit Senes-
cence by Antisense RNA," Science, 254, 437 (1991)
18. Kessler, D.A., M.R. Taylor, J.H. Maryanski, E.L. Flamm,
and L.S. Kahl, "The Safety of Foods Developed by Biotech-
nology," Science, 256, 1747 (1992)
19. Germer, C.K., J.S. Efran, and W.F. Overton, "The
Organicism-Mechanism Paradigm Inventory: Toward the
Measurement of Metaphysical Assumptions," paper pre-
sented at the 53rd meeting of Eastern Psychological Asso-
ciation, Baltimore, MD, April (1982)
20. Champagne, A.B., "Educational Leadership," AAAS, 47(2),
21. Shahn, E., "On Science Literacy," Ed. Philos. and Theory,
20, 42 (1988)
22. Miller, J.D., "Scientific Literacy: A Conceptual and Empiri-
cal Review," Daedalus, 112, 29 (1983)
23. Miller, J.D., "The Scientifically Illiterate," Amer. Demograph-
ics, 9, 26 (1987)
24. Rutheford, F.J., and A. Ahlgren, Science for All Americans,
Oxford University Press, New York, NY (1990)
25. Hazen, R.M., and J. Trefil, Science Matters: Achieving Sci-
entific Literacy, Doubleday, New York, NY (1991)
26. Hirsch, Jr., E.D., J.F. Kett, and J. Trefil, The Dictionary of
Cultural Literacy, Houghton Mifflin, Boston, MA (1988)
27. Shamos, M., "The Lesson Every Child Need Not Learn:
Scientific Literacy is an Empty Goal," The Sciences, 28, 14
28. Mitman, A.L., J.R. Mergendoller, V.A. Marchman, and M.J.
Packer, "Instruction Addressing the Components of Scien-
tific Literacy and Its Relation to Student Outcomes," Amer.
Ed. Res. J., 24, 611 (1987)
29. Culotta, E. "Science's 20 Greatest Hits Take Their Lumps,"
Science, 251, 1308 (1991)
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JAMA, 256(14), 1920 (1986) O

Chemical Engineering Education

DEPARTMENT: Pittsburgh
Continued from page 89.
nication skills of our seniors during the lab recitations.

Cooperative Education Experience Four years ago the
School of Engineering reinstituted the cooperative educa-
tion program. The benefits of alternating terms of academic
study with practical engineering experience in industry have
been obvious. Enhanced communication skills, an apprecia-
tion of the value of education, a strong dose of problem
solving that does not include finding copies of last year's
exams, and a greater chance of full-time employment upon
graduation are a few of the benefits. The financial rewards
are also appealing-salaries currently range between $1200
and $2600 a month.
Our program has been designed to permit students to
enter as early as halfway through their sophomore year and
as late as the end of the junior year. Each student must
complete at least three four-month rotations in order to sat-
isfy the program requirements. Currently, 40 of our 200
students are in the co-op program.
The program has also caused a dramatic change in the
level of undergraduate activity on campus during the sum-
mer. We offer a full slate of courses in the summer to permit
the completion of the coop program in four years and eight
months. The additional eight months have been a small
price to pay in return for the 100% job-placement rate of
those who complete the program.
Internships Summer internships are also encouraged.
These opportunities are usually handled by Pitts' placement
center. It does an excellent job of arranging interviews,
publicizing openings, assisting in resume preparation, and
arranging mock interviews.
Undergraduate Research Positions Another opportu-
nity for experience is undergraduate research. The level of
funded research in our department is typically between $1.8
and $2.5 million per year. Although these projects are usu-
ally associated with graduate students, our faculty has also
aggressively recruited undergraduates to become involved
in the laboratory (shown in the photograph). About twenty
students are involved with the faculty each term, either work-
ing for credit or for a salary. We also organize a formal
program each summer for undergraduate research opportu-
nities. This year a generous NSF grant will greatly enhance
our ten-week program. About twenty undergraduates will
be involved.
International Opportunities Several exciting avenues
of undergraduate research opened last year for the more
adventurous students. Two chemical engineering coop posi-
tions involved extended assignments (four to six months) in
Germany, and one of them will subsequently involve a term-
Spring 1994

long visit to Spain. The University Center for International
Studies also helped us place a student in Japan for an eight-
month internship. Several departments, including chemical
engineering, are currently planning to initiate coop positions
in Mexico this year that will involve both educational and
employment for participating students.

We have integrated several activities into our program
that provide students with a perspective that cannot be
achieved in the classroom or laboratory. A plant trip is
arranged each term to familiarize students with the appear-
ance and operation of a chemical plant. During the visits,
engineers familiar with the facility's design and operation
share their experiences and answer questions. Industrial par-
ticipants that have participated in this program include Calgon
Carbon's activated carbon regeneration facility, ARCO
Chemical's styrene and polystyrene plant, USX Steel's con-
tinuous caster, and Waste Technologies, Inc.'s hazardous
waste incinerator.

The University of Pittsburgh has an excellent placement
service. Students are provided with resume preparation, in-
terview practice sessions, campus interviews, resume refer-
rals, and an extensive compilation of small and large engi-
neering firms and high-tech companies. The placement rate
of our graduates in engineering jobs or graduate school
during the past six years has ranged from 71% to 100%, and
the average starting annual salary over this period has in-
creased steadily from $30,100 to $38,500, with some under-
graduate salaries in excess of $41,000.

We feel that the University of Pittsburgh provides a unique,
exciting, and challenging environment for undergraduate
chemical engineers. The faculty and students are enthusias-
tic about the undergraduate research, cooperative education,
summer internship, and international co-ops and internship
programs. Each of these programs receives strong support
from the School of Engineering. Our department has vital
links to other institutions on campus, such as the Biotech-
nology Center and the University of Pittsburgh Health Cen-
ter. Our curriculum provides a thorough foundation in chemi-
cal engineering while providing flexibility in the selection
of technical electives. Our active research efforts have re-
sulted in a popular set of technical elective sequences and
research opportunities. Our computing facilities and soft-
ware packages are state-of-the-art, and our undergraduate
laboratories are spacious and well-maintained. Our faculty
is accessible to the undergrads and is committed to excel-
lence in both teaching and research. Finally, our department
and the University make a diligent effort to assist recent
graduates with job placement and resume referrals. C

E classroom


West Virginia University
Morgantown, WV26506

hermodynamics; statistics; process design. Few
courses are viewed with as much trepidation by
chemical engineering students (and faculty) as these
are. Yet we generally admit that more understanding of
these topics (even if not more courses) is essential to the
success of our students.
The synthetic-data method provides a framework for
integrating these fields and thereby making them more
"real" for chemical engineering students. The funda-
mental principle of the method is optimization: making
the most and best use of limited experimental data. As such,
it involves error analysis, statistics, thermodynamics, and
process design.

We are often faced with the problem of too few experi-
mental data and too simplistic models in chemical engineer-
ing; a classic example is fluid-phase equilibria. Our mea-
surements of fluid systems (temperature, pressure, composi-
tion, etc.) are quite good, but our models are simplistic:
cubic equations of state, activity-coefficient models, etc. A
further complicating aspect of the problem is that we have
too few of these experimental measurements. It is not fea-
sible, even for common systems, to have complete physical
property data at all temperatures, pressures, and composi-
tions of interest. There are no data at all for many systems.
Over the years, a set of procedures has been developed to
solve this problem-the synthetic-data method.
The general idea is to generate artificial (synthetic) data
for the system of interest from group-contribution or other
methods. One then regresses these synthetic data to deter-
mine the parameters in the thermodynamic models that one
wishes to employ. Group-contribution techniques are not
new, and we routinely expose undergraduates to, for ex-
ample, the Lydersen technique"' for estimating critical tem-
peratures and pressures from the molecular structure of the

SPLG, Inc., 4590 MacArthur Blvd., Suite 400, Newport Beach,
CA 92661-1017
2 SRI International, 333 Ravenswood Avenue, Menlo Park, CA

Wallace B. Whiting is Associate Professor of Chemical Engineering at
West Virginia University, where he has taught for the past decade. He is
active in ASEE and AIChE, and his research and teaching interests range
from thermodynamics to process safety and process design.
Hul-Min Hou received her degrees from West Virginia University (MSChE)
and Taiwan National University (BSChE). She has had broad experience
in her present position at PLG, Inc., as well as previously at Halliburton
NUS. Her specialty is chemical process risk assessment.
Shao-Hwa Wang received his degrees from West Virginia University
(PhD, MSChE) and Taiwan National University (BSChE). Previously at
M.W. Kellogg, and now in the Process Economics Program at SRI Inter-
national, Dr. Wang's work has ranged from thermodynamics to process

compound. Of course, it is not the critical constants that
are important-they are merely synthetic data. But, from
these, we derive the set of parameters that we need for our
equation of state.
An increasingly important technique in industry is the use
of a group-contribution activity-coefficient technique
(UNIFAC) to generate synthetic vapor-liquid equilibrium
data, which are then regressed to determine equation-
of-state parameters.12] Many applications and variations of
this technique have been reported in the literature.[3'41 Re-
cently, a related approach was presented'51 in which very
limited infinite-dilution activity coefficient data plus the Wil-
son equation are used rather than the group-contribution
idea to create synthetic data sets for regression of equation-
of-state parameters.
The steps in the synthetic-data method are shown sche-
matically in Figure 1 and are described below.
Determine the best available primitive model and
the data available. When data are sparse (the usual
case), a group-contribution technique is chosen. In
our application we use the UNIFAC model for
liquid-state activity coefficients.
Generate synthetic data from the primitive model
chosen. These data should be as close as possible
to the range of conditions of interest in the
problem to be solved, but they must be within the
range of validity of the primitive model. Typi-

Copyright ChE Division ofASEE 1994
Chemical Engineering Education

cally, group-contribution techniques are much
more limited in application range than are the
models that are needed to solve the problem. For
example, the UNIFAC model is good only for low
pressures and near-ambient temperatures.
The parameters in the final model to be used are
regressed from the synthetic data generated. In the
regression, these data are weighted according to
the needs of the problem. In our examples we use
the Mathias version of the Soave-Redlich-Kwong
equation of state."6'
The synthetic-data method is powerful and adaptive. It is,
in effect, a "bootstrap" procedure. From only the chemical
structure of the substances in the mixture, data are created
for one set of conditions. The parameters for the more gen-
eral model are regressed from these synthetic data, and pre-
dictions of phase equilibria over a broad range of conditions
are then made. The engineer chooses which synthetic data
to use and how to weight them in the regression of the final

UNIFAC Regression of
Low-Pressure Routine j1,s State
Molecular Weighting Vapor-Llquic
Structure cibr
Infolrlton Criteria Equllibria
Information of the synthetic-data method
Figure 1. Schematic example of the synthetic-data method

0 0.2 0.4 I. 0.8

model parameters. Thus, the higher levels of engineering
judgment (analysis, synthesis, and evaluation) must be used
by the engineer or the engineering student.
The importance of these synthetic-data methods in teach-
ing is that they create a framework for the integration of
thermodynamic models, experimental data, statistics, and
process design.

We teach thermodynamics because we want students to
understand its great unifying concepts: energy, mass, en-
tropy, phase equilibrium, reaction equilibrium. But the test
of that understanding in their profession is if they can use
thermodynamic models for simulation of processes, whether
or not the context of the assignment is plant operations,
research, design, or sales. It is difficult to put these models
into perspective in a short four-year curriculum. But it should
be getting easier.
With user-friendly computer programs now available, our
students can try different models, compare them to
data, and experience the reality that these models, as
elegant and complex as they may seem to be, are only
crude approximations of reality and should be treated
as such. The synthetic-data method is a good vehicle
for this instruction.
The students are given a typical problem: they are
asked to calculate the vapor-liquid equilibrium for a
binary system of dimethyl-ether/methanol. (Any sys-
tem may be chosen, but the results for this system are
given in Figure 2.) To accomplish this, the students
-. must choose a thermodynamic model, and they must
know the parameters in that model. The choice of the
model and the calculation of the composi-
tions for which the fugacities are equivalent
in the two phases are important, and non-
trivial, assignments. The instructor provides
the data. Of course, the data could be found
easily in the literature (especially for this
+ SamK system), but we suggest that synthetic data
+ be generated from, for example, the UNIFAC
Model and presented to the students. De-
pending on the students' backgrounds, we
suggest that the ensuing parts of the prob-
lem be made more interesting by "errorizing"
S the data with a simple Gaussian distribution
+. of "experimental" error.
The students submit their solutions, which
+ 3K should include the parameters that they have
i- regressed, the vapor-liquid equilibria that
they have calculated, and some measure of
the deviations of the calculated results from

the experimental data that were provided.
During the discussion of their results, which

Figure 2. Comparison of the synthetic-data method with experimental
data for dimethyl-ether/methanol
Spring 1994

should be a "reflection in action" 71 about what they have
done, some or all of the following concepts can be brought
in-concepts that would normally seem esoteric to the stu-
dents but which are now of vital importance:
Experimental Error. The instructor has introduced
this artificially, but the students will be able to
estimate (to varying degrees) what the experimental
error was. The discussion can easily range from
random to systematic errors, to the replication of
experiments, to techniques for evaluating which
model is best, to consequences of inaccurate model
predictions, to sources of experimental data.
Statistics Many people (including ABET and indus-
trial advisory committees) decry the lack of statisti-
cal understanding of our students. But clearly the
solution is not to ship the students off to mathemat-
ics or statistics departments for the types of courses
that have created fear and anxiety about statistics in
generations of students. Why not use statistics in
existing courses? Chemical engineering students
have a compelling need for statistics in, for example,
thermodynamics. One can discuss experimental
error, quality of physical-property models, statistical
significance of differences between them, confi-
dence regions of the parameters, maybe even
thermodynamics consistency in the context of
statistics. If we want to be sure that students will
have the motivation for this discussion, we can give
them different sets of the binary data for the problem
and have them compare their results with one
Choice of Thermodynamic Model The very different
results that students get from their chosen models
naturally leads to this important discussion.
Synthetic-data method At some stage in the discus-
sion described above, the instructor can explain how
the data were generated for the problem, and the
discussion will quickly turn to an examination of the
synthetic-data method: how it can be (and is) used;
when it is an appropriate choice; what its limitations
are. Asking students to come up with other examples
of the synthetic-data method can lead to even more
unifying discussion.

The ubiquitous use of process simulation programs in
chemical engineering design courses presents exciting op-
portunities for students to acquire experience. Again, we
suggest the synthetic-data method as a unifying concept for
acquiring this experience.
When students are designing a process, a major stumbling
block is typically the thermodynamic model. Encouraging

students to use the default model is dangerous and unneces-
sary."18 Instead, we encourage students to choose the "best"
model and give them synthetic data as described above. In
this way, they use the regression skills they learned in previ-
ous courses as well as the thermodynamic concepts that
they have mastered.
Each of the design groups chooses a different model,
either on its own or through instructor encouragement. An
active class discussion ensues in which the different designs
of their process units are compared. The direction of this
discussion follows the example given above for the thermo-
dynamics class, but here the focus is not just on the disparity
between the data and the vapor-liquid equilibria, but also on
the apparent discrepancy between any of the designs and the
actual operation of a real plant.
As was the case in the thermodynamics example, the final
discussion here involves the students finding examples of
the synthetic-data method-but this time they try to find
examples in the various thermodynamic property options of
the simulator.

In the thermodynamics example, the students may not
have learned what entropy is, and in the process design
example they may not have learned anything about eigen-
values. But they certainly have learned about how to choose
thermodynamic models, how important thermodynamics re-
ally is, and how much faith to have in the results. They have
developed an expertise that they are likely to remember and
to use when the need arises. Perhaps (we think definitely)
they will have learned some statistics, again, in a way that
they will remember and use.

The synthetic-data method provides a framework for uni-
fying thermodynamics, process design, and statistics in such
a way that students gain valuable experience in using the
concepts they are learning.

We appreciate the partial financial support of the U.S.
Department of Energy through the Consortium for Fossil
Fuel Liquefaction Science.

1. Reid, R.C., J.M. Prausnitz, and B.E. Poling, The Properties
of Gases and Liquids, 4th ed., McGraw-Hill Book Company,
New York, NY (1987)
2. Wang, S.-H., and W.B. Whiting, "Group-Contribution Bi-
nary-Interaction Parameters for Equations of State," pre-
sentation at 1987 AIChE Spring National Meeting, paper
27f, Houston, TX, March (1987)
3. Schwartzentruber, J., and H. Renon, "Extension of UNIFAC
to High-Pressures and Temperatures by the Use of a Cubic

Chemical Engineering Education

Equation of State," Ind. Eng. Chem. Res., 28, 1049 (1989)
4. Santacesaria, E., R. Tesser, and M. Di Serio, "Simple and
Predictive Approach for Calculating the High Pressure and
Temperature Vapour-Liquid Equilibria of Binary Mixtures
by Applying a UNIFAC Equation of State Method," Fluid
Phase Equil., 63, 329 (1991)
5. Twu, C.H., D. Bluck, J.R. Cunningham, and J.E. Coon, "A
Cubic Equation of State: Relation Between Binary Interac-
tion Parameters and Infinite Dilution Activity Coefficients,"
Fluid Phase Equil., 72, 25 (1992)
6. Mathias, P.M., "A Versatile Phase Equation of State," Ind.
Eng. Chem. Proc. Des. Dev., 22, 385 (1983)
7. Schin, D.A., Educating the Reflective Practitioner: Toward
a New Design for Teaching and Learning in the Professions,
Jossey-Bass, San Francisco, CA (1987)
8. de Nevers, N., and J.D. Seader, "Helping Students Develop
a Critical Attitude Towards Chemical Process Calculations,"
Chem. Eng. Ed., 26, 88 (1992) 1

[^ book review

by L.H. Sperling
John Wiley & Sons Inc., New York, NY; 594 pages, $64.95 (1992)
Reviewed by
Eric A. Grulke
Michigan State University
Polymer physical science (the combination of polymer
physics and polymer physical chemistry) forms the basis for
interpreting and solving a wide variety of polymer process-
ing and polymer performance problems. The first edition of
Sperling's Introduction to Physical Polymer Science pro-
vided a good introduction to the field for chemical engi-
neers and material scientists alike. The second edition has
been expanded in several important areas: the amorphous
and crystalline solid states, liquid crystalline systems, and
mechanical behavior. It is a valuable reference for industrial
practitioners as well as a good introductory textbook.
The book begins with a short overview of polymers,
followed by descriptions of chain structures and con-
figurations, and molecular weight distributions. The middle
chapters provide descriptions of concentrated solutions and
polymer blends, the amorphous state, the crystalline state,
liquid crystalline polymers, and thermalmechanical transi-
tions. The final chapters cover mechanical and flow proper-
ties, including the elasticity of crosslinked polymers, poly-
mer rheology and viscoelasticity, mechanical behavior, and
some selected topics.
The introductory material in Chapter 1 provides the reader
with an adequate background and vocabulary to read the
rest of the text. Chapter 2 deals with chain structure and
emphasizes stereochemistry, isomerism, copolymer types and

morphologies, and photophysics. Descriptions of chain struc-
ture analytical methods provide an introduction to polymer
characterization techniques.
Polymer molecular weight determinations are covered in
Chapter 3. Polymer solution thermodynamics forms the
basis for these measurements and is covered early in the
chapter, an improvement from the first edition. Col-
ligative, light scattering, solution viscosity, and gel per-
meation chromatography techniques are presented. The sec-
ond edition includes worked example problems starting in
Chapter 3-an important improvement for classroom use
and self-study alike.
Phase separation behavior (Chapter 4) has received much
better coverage in the second edition. There are additional
phase diagrams, an expanded discussion of polymer-
polymer miscibility, and a good summary of the kinetics
of phase separation. The section on diffusion and perme-
ability in polymers should be helpful to those interested in
packaging applications.
The material on bulk states (amorphous and crystalline)
has been expanded into separate chapters (Chapters 5 and 6)
and a new chapter has been added on liquid crystals (Chap-
ter 7). These changes have made this edition of Introduction
to Physical Polymer Science one of the best single refer-
ences for the physical science description of solid and solid-
like polymer systems.
The discussion of amorphous polymers includes short-
range interactions and long-range order, the conformation
of the polymer chain and macromolecular dynamics. Two
models for linear polymer motion are presented: a bead-
and-spring model (Rouse-Bueche theory) and the reputation
model (de Gennes). In addition, the motion of nonlinear
chains is described.
Chapter 6 on the crystalline state includes analytical meth-
ods for determining crystal structure, unit cells, chain struc-
tures, crystallization from the melt, crystallization kinetics,
and the thermodynamics of fusion. There are also good
sections on the re-entry of chain segments in lamellae, the
effect of chemical structure on the melting temperature, and
fiber formation and structure.
Chapter 7 on the liquid crystalline state is new to this
edition. There are sections on mesophase types and mor-
phologies, fiber formation, comparison of major polymer
types, and the requirements for liquid crystal formation.
The material on thermal-mechanical transitions (Chapter
8) and rubber elasticity (Chapter 9) is about the same as in
the first edition. The five regions of viscoelastic behavior
are explained well, and there is a good section on theories of
the glass transition. There are three laboratory/lecture dem-
onstrations that help illustrate concepts of rubber elasticity.
Continued on page 152.

Spring 1994

1 curriculum




University of Oklahoma
Norman, OK 73019

A recent survey of University of Oklahoma engi-
neering graduates who are now in industry revealed
a very interesting result: out of twenty-seven sub-
jects they rated as "essential for all engineers," oral commu-
nication was rated number one.t1 Since I have spent a total
of fifteen years in three industrial jobs, I was not surprised
at this high rating of the importance of oral communication.
Chemical engineers are expected to give many different
types of oral presentations in their jobs, including impromptu
speaking at small group meetings with peers and managers,
presentations to larger groups of peers and managers, and
presentations to small and large groups of technicians. A
strong case could be made that the ability to communicate
well is more important for a chemical engineer's success in
an industrial job than any other single factor.
Despite the significance of oral communication for suc-
cess in industry, few chemical engineers take a course on
the subject as part of their BS degree. This is undoubtedly
because chemical engineering curricula are already over-
loaded with courses.
Hanzevack and McKean have recognized this problem
and have developed an instructional program on oral
presentations as part of the senior design course at the Uni-
versity of South Carolina.121 It consists of a brief lecture
component accompanied by a written handout of guide-
lines. Each student orally presents a major paper involving
design and economics.

Roger G. Harrison received his BS from the
University of Oklahoma and his MS and PhD
from the University of Wisconsin and has been
Associate Professor of chemical engineering
at the University of Oklahoma since 1988. He
spent a total of fifteen years in research and
development positions with Phillips Petroleum,
Upjohn, and Chevron.
Copyright ChE Division of ASEE 1994

An even more intensive instructional program on oral
presentations has been put into place for seniors in process
design at the University of Oklahoma. In this program, each
student gives four different types of presentations, and the
presentations are videotaped so that the students can ana-
lyze and improve their speaking. The program is incorpo-
rated into two process design courses: Process Design Labo-
ratory and Process Design I. In the Process Design Labora-
tory, students work in teams to obtain experimental data for
three unit operations and do a large-scale process design for
each. This course is taken concurrently with Process Design
I, where the fundamentals of process design are taught.
Lectures on how to make an oral presentation are given in
Process Design I, and students then give four oral presenta-
tions in one of the sections of Process Design Laboratory.

A key component of this program is the presentation of
information on how to plan and prepare an oral presenta-
tion. The author gives two lectures, systematically explain-
ing all the steps involved in the process. A twenty-two page
outline of this information (also available upon request to
anyone reading this article) is handed out at the beginning
of the lectures. The information is based on the author's
experience in giving oral presentations and on a short course
the author took at Phillips Petroleum Company (given by
Shipley Associates, Bountiful, Utah). The author also has
found a book on public speaking by Osborn and Osborn to
be very helpful.13
The first part of the lectures is spent convincing the stu-
dents of the importance of oral communication. Personal
experience and observations are delivered extemporaneously,
both to help create interest and to give a good example of an
extemporaneous talk.
A central idea in planning and preparing a presentation is
to decide early on the method of presentation. Although
students have three methods they can use-memorized,
Chemical Engineering Education

Chemical engineers are expected to give many different types of oral
presentations in their jobs ... A strong case could be made that the ability to communicate well
is more important for a chemical engineer's success in an industrial job than any other single factor.

manuscript, and extemporaneous-we teach them that an
extemporaneous delivery is almost always the best choice;
it comes across as being spontaneous and avoids such prob-
lems as the stilted or inflexible delivery characteristic of
memorized or manuscript presentations. We teach students
to develop a key-word outline on only one sheet of paper or
an index card and then to talk extemporaneously about each
point on the key-word outline.
We also teach students how to organize a talk. A typical
organization is
Both the introduction and the conclusion should be given
without the use of notes. Listeners quickly lose confidence
in a speaker who has to refer to notes during the introduc-
tion or conclusion to a talk. A key objective of the introduc-
tion should be to interest the audience in the topic. This can
be accomplished by any number of approaches, such as
telling a story, using an analogy, or using humor. The intro-
duction should also give a preview of the rest of the talk.
The conclusion should reiterate the main ideas of the talk
and provide a sense of closure. Techniques for doing so
include such things as closing with a quotation, a statement
of personal intention, or a story.
The main points should be presented in the body of the
talk. There should be about three main points in a short talk
and about five in a longer one. These main points and any
sub-main points do not have to be memorized since they are
included in the key-word outline.
Transitions are needed in any talk in order to link the
various parts of the speech together. They give coherence to
the talk and guide the listeners along the way. When transi-
tions are not planned, overuse of words such as "well," "you
know," and "okay" can result.
Visual support materials are also necessary for most pre-
sentations. In my lecture on preparing talks, I discuss the
various strengths and weaknesses of the different types of
visual support materials, including chalk boards, overhead
transparencies, and slides. I warn the students that a com-
mon tendency is to try to put too much material on a trans-
parency or a slide. I emphasize two points taken from "The
Speaker's Pledge," by Lubberoff: 4]
SWhen using overhead transparencies, prepare them with
letters that are at least four times the size of those on a
Spring 1994

*When using slides, fill them only with what can be typed,
double-spaced, on a 3x5 card, and no more (approxi-
mately nine lines).
A final point that I stress is that the student must practice
the presentation several times, and that practicing should be
carried out using the key-word outline. This is important for
making the presentation sound natural.

A description of each of the four types of talks the student
must give follows.
Impromptu Talk This is a one- or two-minute talk on a
topic announced at the start of class. The topic is one that
any student can readily speak on, such as "Tell us some-
thing interesting that happened to you when you were grow-
ing up," or "Tell us something about yourself that the rest of
us probably don't know." The objective of this talk is to
enable the students to give an impromptu talk in a relaxed
setting. They are then given feedback on their speaking
style, captured on videotape. The videotape viewing gives
students the opportunity to discover distracting gestures and
speech habits that they may not have been aware of.
Introduction to a Longer Talk This introduction, three to
four minutes in length, is delivered without notes. The main
point here is to capture the attention and interest of the
audience and to preview the rest of the talk. The students
select their own topics and develop points for the body of
the talk, but actually only give its introduction.
Talk Using at Least One Transparency This covers only
one part of the body of the talk, is three to four minutes in
length, and must be delivered using only the key-word out-
line. The students again select their own topic. The focus of
this talk is learning how to use transparencies effectively.
Talk on a Portion of a Process Design Laboratory Re-
port Each group of four students gives a twenty-minute
presentation on the last of the three projects they did in the
course, which means that each of the students has five min-
utes to speak. Typically, each student would use three to
four transparencies in his or her presentation. In preparing
for this talk, the students practice before the other members
of their group, which gives them valuable feedback from
peers. Furthermore, this additional talk involving transpar-
encies helps to increase the students' confidence in using
visual aids.
The instructor jots down brief comments, both positive
and negative, for each talk, and the notes are then given to

the student at the end of the class. A grade is assigned to
all talks except the impromptu talk. Students are also as-
signed a grade for viewing their videotape (full credit if
viewed and zero credit if not viewed); this viewing must be
done before their next talk. Students view one of their vid-
eotapes in the presence of the instructor and they then dis-
cuss the student's performance.

After the last oral presentation the students are asked to
evaluate the program. The responses have been over-
whelmingly positive. Representative student comments
are given in Table 1.
The comments reveal several interesting insights about
the program. The students appreciated both the information
on how to make a presentation and the opportunity to prac-
tice in front of their peers. Also, the videotaping was con-
sidered to be a useful tool in discovering how they could
improve their next presentation, confirming the adage "a
picture is worth a thousand words." Since more than half of
the students had not taken any previous speech course, this
program is definitely filling an educational need.

This program could easily be used in an adapted form in
other chemical engineering departments. For departments
where the senior design class is relatively small (less than
twenty), the lectures and the student talks could all be
done in the design class. (It was successfully done this way

at the University of Oklahoma for two different semesters.)
Another approach would be to incorporate the student
talks in the sections of unit operations lab and give the
lectures in a chemical engineering course running con-
currently with the lab.

I appreciate the support of Richard Mallinson, Associate
Professor, and Bruce Roberts, graduate student, in imple-
menting this program in the sections of the process design
laboratory course that they taught. Arletta Knight, formerly
an instructor in the Department of Communication at the
University of Oklahoma, gave helpful suggestions and sup-
port in the development of this program.

1. Crynes, B.L., "Industry Survey of Curriculum Subjects,"
memo to College of Engineering faculty, University of Okla-
homa (1992)
2. Hanzevack, E.L., and R.A. McKean, "Teaching Effective
Oral Presentations as Part of the Senior Design Course,"
Chem. Eng. Ed., 24, 28 (1990)
3. Osborn, M., and S. Osborn, Public Speaking, 2nd ed.,
Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston, MA (1991)
4. Lubberoff, B., "Miami '89," Chemtech, 19, 705 (1989) J

REVIEW: Physical Polymer Science
Continued from page 149.
Polymer rheology has now been included in Chapter 10
with polymer viscoelasticity. Example calculations and the
laboratory experiments in these sections are well thought
out. There is a new section on fracture and healing in Chap-
ter 11 (polymer mechanical behavior), and Chapter 12 intro-
duces polymer surfaces and interfaces, electrical properties,
and nonlinear optics.
References, general reading, and study problems are in-
cluded in each chapter. The study problems are well-
chosen. There are both qualitative and quantitative prob-
lems, problems dealing with analytical methods, problems
addressing theory, practical questions, and some problems
that can be answered with the aid of simple experi-
ments. Students may be perplexed, but they won't be bored
with this homework.
In conclusion, polymer physical science is an area that is
often neglected in polymer course sequences in chemical
engineering-this book can be used for an introductory
course, or could even be used as the basis for a graduate
course on the topic. Because of its good treatment of
amorphous, crystalline, liquid crystals, rubber elasticity,
and thermalmechanical transitions, it is also a valuable ref-
erence for the industrial polymer scientist working on
performance properties of solid polymer, polymer blend,
or liquid crystal systems. J
Chemical Engineering Education

This guide is offered to aid authors in preparing manuscripts for Chemical Engineering Education (CEE), a
quarterly journal published by the Chemical Engineering Division of the American Society for Engineering
Education (ASEE).
CEE publishes papers in the broad field of chemical engineering education. Papers generally describe a course,
a laboratory, a ChE department, a ChE educator, a ChE curriculum, research program, machine computation,
special instructional programs, or give views and opinions on various topics of interest to the profession.

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defining the subject area covered by the paper.

AUTHORSHIP Be consistent in authorship designation. Use first name, second initial, and surname. Give
complete mailing address of place where work was conducted. If current address is different, include it in a
footnote on title page.

TEXT We request that manuscripts not exceed twelve double-spaced (ten-point type) typewritten pages in
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Assume your reader is not a novice in the field. Include only as much history as is needed to provide background
for the particular material covered in your paper. Sectionalize the article and insert brief appropriate headings.

TABLES Avoid tables and graphs which involve duplication or superfluous data. If you can use a graph, do
not include a table. If the reader needs the table, omit the graph. Substitute a few typical results for lengthy tables
when practical. Avoid computer printouts.

NOMENCLATURE Follow nomenclature style of Chemical Abstracts; avoid trivial names. If trade names
are used, define at point of first use. Trade names should carry an initial capital only, with no accompanying
footnote. Use consistent units of measurement and give dimensions for all terms. Write all equations and formulas
clearly, and number important equations consecutively.

ACKNOWLEDGMENT Include in acknowledgment only such credits as are essential.

LITERATURE CITED References should be numbered and listed on a separate sheet in the order occurring
in the text.

COPY REQUIREMENTS Send two legible copies of the typed (double-spaced) manuscript on standard
letter-size paper. Submit original drawings (or clear prints) of graphs and diagrams on separate sheets of paper, and
include clear glossy prints of any photographs that will be used. Choose graph papers with blue cross-sectional
lines; other colors interfere with good reproduction. Label ordinates and abscissas of graphs along the axes and
outside the graph proper. Figure captions and legends will be set in type and need not be lettered on the drawings.
Number all illustrations consecutively. Supply all captions and legends typed on a separate page. State in cover
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