Polyesters are polymers formed from a dicarboxylic acid and a diol. The most common polyester is polyethylene terephthalate (PET). At its most basic level PET Synthesis requires the combination of ethylene glycol, terephthalic acid or dimethyl terephthalic Acid, and heat. The production of polyesters can often be improved from the real time information collected by continuous process monitoring of both component and product streams. Near infrared analyzers are a tool that can help process engineers and technicians to make informed process optimization decisions.
Terephthalic Acid and Dimethyl Terephthalic Acid can both be synthesized by reacting P-xylene with cobalt–manganese–bromide catalyst, acetic acid, and air. Real-time quantitative monitoring of this caustic reaction is possible with the Guided Wave Clearview DB analyzer. A Kalrez sealed or gold brazed single-sided insertion probe (SST) can be installed directly into the reaction vessel for continuous process monitoring and optimization. Additionally, in an extremely corrosive environment, the sample probe can be constructed out of Hastelloy C276.
In batch polymerization, dimethyl terephthalate (DMT) reacts with ethylene glycol in esterification to form a monomer alcohol, which then polymerizes with terephthalic acid (TPA). The continuous method, on the other hand, involves polymerization between TPA and ethylene glycol, so DMT is not necessary. Both methods involve heating either DMT or TPA with ethylene glycol to about 536º F for 30 minutes at atmospheric pressure, and then the mixture spends 10 hours under vacuum. Near-Infrared analyzers such as the ClearView db and NIR-O Process analyzers can be used to provide in-situ monitoring of the cross-linking under vacuum conditions. Out of specification product can be detected with high-temperature shuttle probe and Near infrared monitoring during melt transfer. By monitoring the molten polymer stream for Acid Number, a cost savings can be realized by preventing off spec product from reaching the extrusion or pelletizer.
Like many petrochemical reactions, polyester (PET) synthesis, benefits from continuous monitoring using near infrared analyzers. Please complete our application questionnaire, so that we can work together to determine how our analyzers can be used to optimize your process and reduce your operating costs.
Our comprehensive GUIDED WAVE NIR UV-VIS process and lab analyzer spectrometers offer optically matched components and a meticulously planned calibration approach, ensuring long-term efficiency and cost savings. Our advanced systems are engineered for continuous online operation, delivering real-time data of laboratory-grade quality, even in the harshest processing plant conditions.