A process model including mass and energy balance of the entire process is an important basis for process optimization projects. A model is useful not only for energy saving projects but also for de-bottlenecking studies, quality improvement projects and operating cost reduction. It provides the operator with information about mass and heat streams, a complete set of operational parameters and internal variables of reactors, columns and heat exchangers. Values that cannot be measured are available from the process model. Nevertheless for an energy saving project we normally do not build up a complete process model, because the effort for a model is relatively high. But if a process model exists, we actualize it and use it for our energy saving purposes. The process model is a good basis for the idea generation phase especially for the pinch analysis (see Chapter 6) and operational improvements in the plant (see Section 4.4.4).
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