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In chemical processing, a packed bed is a hollow tube, pipe, or other vessel that is filled with a packing material. The packing can be randomly filled small objects like Raschig rings or else it can be a specifically designed structured packing.
The purpose of a packed bed is typically to improve contact between two phases in a chemical or similar process. Packed beds can be used in a chemical reactor, distillation process, or a scrubber, but packed beds have also been used to store heat in chemical plants. In this case, hot gases are allowed to escape through a vessel that is packed with a refractory material until the packing is hot. Air or other cool gas is then fed back to the plant through the hot bed, thereby pre-heating the gas feed.
Distillation columns with packing are often called packed columns. Columns used in certain types of chromatography consisting of a tube filled with packing material can also be called packed columns and their structure has similarities to packed beds.
|This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Packed_bed". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.|