This case meets the criteria on the following:
1. Project is realised
2. Contribution to grand challenges: societal challenge ‘public health
3. Economic impact: this technology is applied internationally
October 12, 2011
SUCCESSFUL START UP OF THE TNO HWC®
INSTALLATION FOR HIGH PURITY PHOSPHORIC
ACID
Recently the start up and testing phase of a pilot installation for the production of high purity phosphoric
acid at the Solvay site in Bernburg (Germany) has been completed successfully. During the acceptance
test 9000 kg of high purity phosphoric acid were produced and the operation of the installation turned
out to be very stable and robust. The product can be used as high purity etchant in the electronics and
semi-conductor industries.
OFFICIAL TRANSFER
On Monday October 10th 2011 was the official transfer of ownership of the Pilot Installation at the Solvay
Bernburg plant, marking the start of a heightened level of cooperation between Solvay and TNO on innovative
technology that will encompass other topics in the area of Process Intensification.
Photo
On the Left: Dr. Thomas Müller, Senior Vice-President, Site Manager Solvay Bernburg.
On the right: Dr. Matthias Dabrunz, Production and Technical Marketing Manager High Purity Products Europe
HYDRAULIC WASH COLUMN
The installation is based on the Hydraulic Wash Column Technology developed by TNO (TNO HWC®). The
design and construction of the skid-mounted, turn-key installation was carried out by Zeton (the Netherlands). In
the installation, a raw phosphoric acid with a relatively high concentration of ionic impurities is cooled down to
form pure phosphoric acid hemi-hydrate crystals. The impurities remain in the liquid phase. A very efficient
counter current washing of the crystals that occurs in the Hydraulic Wash Column separates the crystals almost
completely from the impure liquid. Thus a phosphoric acid product with impurity concentrations in the “ppb” range
is produced.
BOOST THE DEVELOPMENT AND IMPLEMENTATION FOR OTHER APPLICATIONS
For TNO this successful start up is the first publicly disclosed reference for the Hydraulic Wash Column. This
milestone is expected to boost the development and implementation of the technology for other applications, like
the ultra-purification of organic chemicals. Indeed, the HWC technology is a product from TNO’s Process
Intensification portfolio, in which innovative processes and equipment are developed and implemented to support
innovation in the chemical industry.
For Solvay high purity phosphoric acid is a welcome extension to their product portfolio of high purity chemicals
for the electronic and semi-conductor industry. Other products in that fast growing portfolio are hydrogen fluoride
and peroxides.
Press release 2011-52
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For Solvay high purity phosphoric acid is a welcome