Chemical Reaction Engineering



Michael CunninghamDupuis (613) 533-2782


Ikenna EzenwajiakuDupuis
Jennifer AielloDupuis
Niloofar Shirali

Course Description

This course provides a detailed and in depth analysis to the principles of chemical kinetics, and reactor analysis and design. The topics in chemical kinetics include: rate constants, reaction order, rate equations for elementary and complex reactions, kinetic data analysis, and product distribution. In reactor analysis and design, discussion is focused on ideal reactor systems and arrangements, including batch reactors, plug flow reactors, continuous stirred tank reactors, and recycle reactors. The last part of the course considers homogeneous and heterogeneous catalytic reactions. The design component consists of how to make an appropriate choice of reactor type and operating conditions to optimize a desired product; sizing such reactors and determining conversion levels under various conditions of temperature and pressure; determination of reaction kinetics from experimental data. (0/0/0/30/12)

PREREQUISITES:  CHEE 210, (CHEE 222 or MINE 201), or permission of the department.

Objectives and Outcomes

The objective of this course is to develop general methodologies for analysis and design of a variety of systems (chemical, biochemical/biological, polymer, electrochemical) for which engineering of reactions is needed.

In the first part of the course, basic concepts of chemical kinetics and chemical reactor design as related to simple reaction systems will be introduced. Topics covered will include the general mole balance, reactor types, conversion and reactor sizing, rate laws and stoichiometry and isothermal reactor design. In the second part of the course, we will build upon the concepts developed in the first half of the course to describe real systems that deal with complex reactions and non-ideal reactors. Topics to be covered will include non-isothermal reaction design (energy balances), multiple reactions and reaction pathways, non-ideal reactors/residence time distribution (time permitting), and heterogeneous reactions (time permitting).

Specific course learning outcomes (CLOs) include:

  1. Calculate operating parameters (size, flowrates, conversion, etc.) for isothermal and non-isothermal operation of ideal well-mixed batch and continuous reactors, and for ideal plug-flow reactors.
  2. Formulate a set of consistent material and energy balance equations to describe operation of batch, semi-continuous and continuous reactor systems with single or multiple reactions, operating with and without heat exchange.
  3. Develop stoichiometric tables and formulate an overall rate expression from a series of elementary mechanistic steps, taking into account the dependence of temperature, pressure and concentration, as well as the requirement of thermodynamic consistency for reversible equations.
  4. Choose an appropriate reactor type and operating conditions to achieve a desired output such as reactant conversion, selectivity and yield.

This course assesses the following attributes:

Knowledge base for engineering, KB-RE, KB-PROC (CLO 1-3):

  • Analyzes reaction mechanisms, identifies rate limiting steps and develops expressions describing reaction kinetics for catalytic and non-catalytic processes.                             
  •  Identifies types of reactors and performs relevant calculations using material and energy balances.
  • Utilizes engineering science knowledge to size various unit operations, including but not limited to pumps, heat exchangers, separation processes and reactors.                    

Design (CLO 4): Develops a process or product design incorporating performance requirements and constraints such as quality, yield, reliability, economics, safety, and standards and codes as appropriate.

Relevance to the Program

This 3rd year course is the main course covering the engineering science of chemical kinetics, reactor analysis, as well as reactor design. The engineering science and reactor design skills taught in this course are considered essential for any practicing Chemical Engineer. The knowledge acquired in this course is required in CHEE 323 “Industrial Catalysis” and CHEE 470 “Design of Manufacturing Processes”. The course assumes knowledge of 2nd year thermodynamics, as well as knowledge of material covered in CHEE 222, process dynamics and numerical methods.

Course Structure and Activities

3 lecture hours + 1 tutorial hour per week.  Times and locations can be found in SOLUS.


Required Textbook: H. Scott Fogler 2011. Essentials of Chemical Reaction Engineering, Prentice Hall Inc.

Optional version: H. Scott Fogler 2006. Elements of Chemical Reaction Engineering, 4th Ed, Prentice Hall Inc.

All course lecture slides, assignments and tutorials will be posted on the CHEE 321 Learning management system (LMS).