Millireactors with prismatic static mixers for synthesis of dibenzalacetone


*Corresponding author
Faculty of Chemical Engineering and Technology University of Zagreb, Zagreb, Croazia


Company research departments and institutes have just begun to adopt technologies of Additive Manufacturing (AM), such as 3D-printing to make prototypes and produce individual components. One of the examples how AM can be used in flow chemistry is producing special types of reactors for continuous production. In this paper, an approach for producing millireactor with prismatic static mixers through Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF) AM technology is presented. Base catalysed aldol condensation was chosen for case study because reagents are non-toxic and safe to use which is in accordance with green chemistry.
Process intensification is shown in terms of retention time, τ of 5 min. In the traditional batch synthesis of dibenzalacetone it takes from 30 min to one and a half hour to produce pale yellow crystals with melting point in a range of 110 °C, corresponding to the literature data for trans, trans dibenzylideneacetone .

Additive manufacturing (AM) is the one of the Industry 4.0 technologies that is intensively developed for rapid prototyping but also for manufacturing the end-products (1). Due its versatility the AM plays a key-role in the Industry 4.0, saving time and money, being decisive for process efficiency and reducing its complexity, allowing for rapid prototyping and highly decentralized production processes. According to the latest definition of ISO and ASTM (2), AM is a group name for processes of joining materials to make objects from 3D-model data, usually layer upon layer, as opposed to subtractive manufacturing methodologies.
The unique possibilities of the AM emerge from the principle of adding material precisely where it is needed therefore it is possible to manufacture complex geometries with less manufacturing restrictions in comparison to conventional subtractive manufacturing processes like milling and turning. This AM approach also generates less waste as compared with subtractive manufacturing methods and no special tooling is required besides the production machine, therefore, the production of individualized products or small ...