CHEE311: Phase and Reaction Equilibrium

Phase and Reaction Equilibrium



Scott ParentDupuis Hall 533-6266



Course Description

This course is concerned with the application of thermodynamics to practical problems of the chemical industry. Emphasis is placed on the study of phase equilibrium, including vapour-liquid equilibrium and liquid-liquid equilibrium. Contemporary methods of calculating the thermodynamic properties of non-ideal vapours and liquids will be presented and applied. The principles of chemical reaction equilibrium will also be studied. The design component of the course will require students to perform theoretical vapour-liquid equilibrium calculations and recommend proper operating conditions for a single-stage unit (flash drum) that separates a non-ideal binary mixture. (0/0/0/30/12). Prerequisite: CHEE 210.

Objectives and Outcomes

The principal objective of the course is to provide the necessary tools to help engineers design and operate processes and unit operations in chemical engineering and engineering chemistry. The students will learn how to apply the principles of chemical reaction equilibrium and phase equilibrium to the calculation of complex separation processes.

Specific course learning outcomes (CLO) include:

  1. Identify and understand the principles of chemical equilibrium thermodynamics to solve multiphase equilibria and chemical reaction equilibria.
  2. Analyze the conditions associated with ideal and non-ideal vapour-liquid systems at equilibrium through the construction and interpretation of phase diagrams for ideal and non-ideal binary mixtures.
  3. Use empirical correlations and experimental data to evaluate thermodynamic quantities that relate to the vapour-liquid or liquid-liquid equilibria of ideal and non-ideal chemical mixtures.
  4. Determine equilibrium constants for chemical reactions and equilibrium point compositions for multiple reaction systems.
  5. Solve single- and multistage separation processes involving non-ideal chemical mixtures using numerical methods and simulations, and recommend appropriate operating conditions.

This course assesses the following attributes:

Knowledge base for engineering (CLO 1-4):

  • KB-TH-3. Utilizes or constructs phase diagrams for single or multi-component ideal and non-ideal systems.
  • KB-TH-4. Uses empirical correlations and experimental data to evaluate thermodynamic quantities that relate to the vapour-liquid or liquid-liquid equilibria.
  • KB-TH-5. Determines equilibrium constants and analyzes the influence of thermodynamic equilibrium on reaction and separation systems.
  • KB-TH-6. Solves single and multi-stage separation processes with non-ideal chemical mixtures.

Problem analysis (CLO 3-5):

  • CHEE-PA-3. Selects and applies appropriate quantitative model, analysis and boundary conditions to solve problems

Design (CLO 5):

  • CHEE-DE-3. Develops a process or product design incorporating performance requirements and constraints such as quality, yield, reliability, economics, safety, and standards and codes as appropriate.

Engineering tools (CLO 5):

  • CHEE-TOO-4. Selects and applies appropriate software/models/simulations.

Relevance to the Program

This engineering science course covers advanced topics in thermodynamics, which is a fundamental topic of chemical engineering and engineering chemistry. The engineering science skills taught in this course are required for 3rd year courses (Design of Unit Operations; Heat and Mass Transfers) and 4th year courses (Laboratory Projects III; Design of Manufacturing Processes), and form the basis of essential knowledge to understand chemical engineering processes and reactions.

The course assumes knowledge of 2nd year thermodynamic properties of fluids, and requires general applications of engineering and mathematical tools taught in previous years of study.

Course Structure and Activities

3 lecture hours + 1 tutorial hour per week.  Refer to Solus for times and schedules.


“Introduction to Chemical Engineering Thermodynamics” 7th Ed., by Smith, Van Ness, Abbott

This textbook (referred to as “SVNA”) is available from the campus bookstore in hard copy and e-book formats. The textbook is listed as mandatory, and extensive use of the textbook is made throughout the term, including reference to numerous tables and appendices. Previous editions may be used; however contents may not match references listed in course material.

All course lecture slides, assignments and tutorials will be posted online. Students registered for the course can access this information by logging in to the specified learning environment address.

TAs and instructor are available for consultation by appointment (e-mail is recommended).