Experimental investigation of the performance of different micro reactor technologies for the production of sugar derivatives in the food industry

  • chair:
  • place:

    Bachelor's Thesis / Student Assistant

  • institute:


  • starting date:

    by arrangement

  • Kontaktperson:

    Claramunt, Sara

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    Background and motivation

    In the food and beverage industry, some sugar derivatives are used to increase fiber content or as a bulking agent and texturizer in food products. The production of these sugar derivatives  in industrial stirred batch reactors presents many disadvantages like the appearance of temperature and concentration gradients within the reactor and an unfavourable residence time ratio.



    Previous investigations showed that this reversible reaction can be conducted with a high yield and selectivity in micro reactors at high temperatures. By removing water from the reaction mixture, the equilibrium of the reaction can be shifted towards higher yields.

    Within a technology transfer project in cooperation with an international industry partner, the optimization of the micro reactor technology and the development of a novel membrane technology for the continuous removal of water during the reaction is pursued. This may allow performing the reaction in one step, reduce further equipment and increase the energy efficiency of the process.

    Topic and Tasks of the Thesis / Hiwi job

    Before including a membrane in the reactor, the most effective micro reactor technology for the production of the sugar derivatives should be determined. Two micro reactor technologies are under consideration. On the one hand a multi microchannel flat module and on the other hand, a micro reactor based on flow guiding elements, both technologies developed at the IMVT.






    The aim of this work is to experimentally investigate the performance of the different micro reactor technologies and draw conclusions for the suitability of the micro reactors for different reaction conditions.  
    The individual tasks include:

    • Literature study
    • Start-up of a pilot plant: Validation of the test stand and the measuring technique
    • Evaluation of the yield and the water amount for both reactor technologies at different reaction conditions
    • Written summary of results

    General Conditions

    • Students of Chemical Engineering / Process engineering / Chemistry
    • The results of the work will be presented at the institute seminar.
    • The thesis can be written in English or in German
    • Start: by arrangement


    Examiner: Prof. Dr.-Ing. Roland Dittmeyer

    Supervisor: Sara Claramunt

    Contact: sara.claramunt@kit.edu

    Tel: 0721/608-24052