Numerical Study of the Self-ignition of Tetrafluoroethylene in a 100-dm3-reactor

F. Ferrero[1], M. Kluge[1], R. Zeps[1], T. Spoormaker[2]
[1]BAM Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing, Berlin, Germany
[2]Chairman PlasticsEurope Fluoropolymers TFE Safety Task Force, Du Pont De Nemours, Dordrecht, The Netherlands

The self-ignition of tetrafluoroethylene (TFE) caused by contact with hot surfaces has been analyzed with the help of simulations performed with COMSOL Multiphysics®. The current study focuses on large-scale heated reactors for the industrial production of polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) from TFE at high pressures. Simulations of the self-heating and consequent self-ignition of TFE in a 100-dm3-reactor were carried out. The model solved three application modes of the Chemical Reaction Engineering Module of COMSOL Multiphysics®. The results of the computations performed were compared with experimental data for the model validation. A good agreement was observed, since ignition temperatures of TFE (MITD) are well predicted.