An orthogonal expansion technique for solving separation problems in laminar countercurrent concentric circular thermal-diffusion columns under flow-rate fraction variations is developed analytically and applied to heavy water enrichment. Experimental work for the H2O-HDO-D2O system has been also conducted. The present theoretical predictions are based on Sturmian theory, and positive and negative eigenvalues are needed for enriching and stripping sections, respectively, during the calculation procedure. The results show that the theoretical predictions are in better agreement with the experimental results than those predicted in previous works by using the transport equation.
Chemical Engineering Communications 194(11), pp.1430-1456