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Process Bench For Engineering Technology Laboratory

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2004 Annual Conference


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 20, 2004

Start Date

June 20, 2004

End Date

June 23, 2004



Conference Session

Curriculum Development in Electromechanical Engineering Technology

Page Count


Page Numbers

9.1010.1 - 9.1010.8

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Paper Authors

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Satyajit Verma

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session number : 1449

Process Bench for Engineering Technology Laboratory Satyajit Verma Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi

This paper is a report on work in progress. It describes student involvement in designing a process bench. The Texas A & M University - Corpus Christi has recently established four year degree programs in Mechanical Engineering Technology and Control Systems Engineering Technology. Laboratory equipment are being purchased and laboratory exercises are being developed. Many courses e.g. Fluid Mechanics, Principles of Measurements, Control Systems, Digital Logic, Microprocessors and Microcontrollers have laboratory exercises as integral part of the course. Some other courses, such as heat transfer and thermodynamics, would benefit from a laboratory where key principles can be demonstrated. We plan to build a process bench where many of the above mentioned experiments may be conducted and principles demonstrated. Additionally, the program as a whole would benefit from an installation where a series of equipment are interconnected as one sees in an industrial situation. An integrated set up would also provide the students an opportunity to combine a variety of lessons they learn in seemingly unconnected courses. Engineering Technology students in various courses are helping in design and construction of parts of the process bench as project work in these courses.

The Brazosport Community College1, Lake Jackson, Texas and Victoria College2, Victoria, Texas have many similar process benches. Each process bench at these locations highlights one specific process encountered in chemical plants. The main purpose of these process benches is to educate and train new hires in plant operations. The TAMU-CC Process Bench is mainly designed for demonstrations and conducting experiments. It incorporates the essential features of two or three benches at these Colleges in one single unit. It also differs from the benches at the other two facilities in that it does not contain any hazardous chemical e.g. ethylene glycol, acids or alkali in the process circuit. Yet, it is a very versatile facility where experiments in control systems, fluid dynamics, heat transfer and thermodynamics can be conducted. Because of its versatility and ease of modification, it is readily adaptable to research oriented efforts.

Overview of the Process Bench at TAMU-CC

The TAMU-CC Process Bench is designed to utilize water and water – glycerin mixture in a closed loop recycle system to demonstrate many simple but important operations routinely carried out in chemical / refining industries. The two fluids from their respective storage tanks are first mixed into a feed tank, and later separated as overhead and bottom products in a distillation column. The separated streams are recycled back to their respective storage tanks.

The choice of fluids was driven by safety and following considerations:

Proceedings of the 2004 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2004, American Society for Engineering Education

Verma, S. (2004, June), Process Bench For Engineering Technology Laboratory Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah.

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