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Pc Based Transport Laboratory Experiments

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2002 Annual Conference


Montreal, Canada

Publication Date

June 16, 2002

Start Date

June 16, 2002

End Date

June 19, 2002



Conference Session

Unique Lab Experiments

Page Count


Page Numbers

7.913.1 - 7.913.17



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Paper Authors

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Nam Kim

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Session 2526

PC-Based Transport Laboratory Experiments

Nam K. Kim Department of Chemical Engineering Michigan Technological University Houghton, MI 49931


The transport laboratory course in Chemical Engineering at Michigan Tech has been offered to undergraduate juniors as a 2-credit required course since 2000. The laboratory equipment has been newly designed to accommodate an in-line digital computer for data acquisition. The chemical engineering faculty focused on three essential elements in selecting a system: safe, compact and inexpensive.

Based on an examination of the unit operations commonly found in modern chemical manufacturing plants, a process was designed for implementation. This consists of a flow loop with two tanks, a supply tank and a receiving tank. A ½-HP centrifugal pump is used for transfer and circulation application. The straight pipes of three different nominal sizes (1/4”, 3/8”, and ½”) are used for the study of fluid dynamics. The angles, tees, crosses, orifice, rotameter, ball valves, gate valves, and pneumatic control valves were included for system analysis. A double- pipe heat exchanger was added for non-isothermal operations. The pneumatic control valves are operated by instrument air: one for water flow control and the other for stream flow control. The digital bench scales are used for weighing the fluid.

Thirteen experiments were designed for a one-semester course, including two or three class periods of applied engineering statistics. Some key topics include measurements of viscosity, pressure, and Reynolds number and calibrations of a DP cell and a rotameter, pneumatic control valve and steam traps. The energy losses resulting from the friction of the fluid's movement through the straight pipes, valves, and fittings are computed for the system and compared with the measured values. The operating point is identified on the pump curves with the system curve. The heat transfer coefficients are sought for the heat exchanger and displayed as a function of DT using an in-line PC.

Proceedings of the American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition © 2002 American Society for Engineering Education

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Kim, N. (2002, June), Pc Based Transport Laboratory Experiments Paper presented at 2002 Annual Conference, Montreal, Canada. 10.18260/1-2--10217

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