REVIEWS AND READER COMMENTS
"Too often, people involved in process development don't know where to start...they should start with this book. Bridging the gap between the laboratory, the pilot plant, and the process unit has never looked so effortless. Fran McConville shares practical tips, pitfalls, quality engineering data, and valuable insight into unit operations to help chemists and engineers collaborate to take a process from infancy to adulthood. Even if you may never touch a pilot plant, it is still a useful reference… of value to any chemical engineer. The organization makes perfect sense, graphics are used thoughtfully, example problems are offset, and charts are well annotated and explained. A fantastic book that meets its goal of bringing experience-based knowledge about process development to the fingertips of each owner." Overall rating: "This should be the next book you buy".
Chemical Engineer's Resource Page Book Corner
"The presentation is brilliant. Includes some very useful formulas and practical physical data that you don't normally find in one book."
Rhodia-Chirex, Inc., Cramlington, UK
"This deserves to be a best seller. No pilot plant should be without it! The content is just what is needed."
-Dr. Trevor Laird
Founder, Scientific Update, East Sussex, UK
"Fran McConville has written a masterful book describing practical information useful and necessary for successful scale-up in a pilot plant. Chemical engineers, especially those just venturing into the pilot plant, will find revealed many practical aspects of scale-up that are normally learned only by experience (and error). The book compiles extensive tables on solvent parameters, compatibility of materials, sizes of tubing and hoses, horsepower of agitator drive motors, and much more. Practically every page has a diagram, such as cooling rates for a crystallization, sketches of general-purpose reactors, rotameters, and much more. Safety is emphasized throughout, including a section on electricity and instrumentation. Engineers will appreciate the operating tips for centrifuges and dryers, discussion on equipment for polish filtration, a trouble-shooting guide for pumps, and so on.
The Pilot Plant Real Book is more than just a handbook; it provides practical perspective on the possibilities and limitations of pilot plant scale-up. Chemists will find it an invaluable reference when developing and introducing processes into a pilot plant. McConville's book is chock-full of practical tips, such as safety considerations for representative sampling; when to expect an azeotrope; the inevitability of a rag layer when conducting extractions on scale; how to break emulsions, and more. This book should be issued to new chemical engineers and chemists developing processes for the pilot plant, and should be available on the shelf outside pilot plant doors."
-Dr. Neal G. Anderson
Founder, Process Solutions, LLC
author of "Practical Process Research & Development", Academic Press, 2000
"A university education alone cannot prepare students for the way many operations are carried out in commercial practice. The Pilot Plant Real Book bridges the gap by providing brief, clear explanations of carefully selected concepts central to modern chemical processing - along with judiciously chosen examples, time-saving pointers, and useful data tables and templates. Theory is kept to a minimum and never gets in the way, because its role is limited to helping the user grasp and apply the more practical knowledge that fills McConville's book to overflowing. The information presented here amounts to a "spiral-wound mentor" that takes the place of years of on-the-job experience and weeks of short-course attendance. I heartily recommend this working reference to every graduating chemical engineer or chemist who hopes to enter the industrial workplace with confidence and an 'unfair advantage'."
-Stephen L. Matson
Francis Manning Professor of Chemical Engineering
Worcester Polytechnic Institute
"There are many books available in this field but the difference with this text is the breadth of cover and the ease with which you assimilate the knowledge. Each line is a pared-down nugget of knowledge. It may be the beginning of a search for a definition among the many references or a refresher before application in a live environment. ... A concise text, an easy mode of expression and more tables than a furniture warehouse, it is written with a confidence born out of getting it right."
in "Chemistry and Industry"
"...an invaluable resource not only for pilot plant and kilolaboratory operations, but for the process development and engineering laboratories as well. Both practicing chemists and chemical engineers will find this reference manual indispensable in their day-to-day process design and development activities. It is written in a handbook format with hundreds of illustrations, checklists, example calculations, and tables of highly useful reference data that until now could not be found under one cover. The "Pilot Plant Real Book" should be required reading for anyone new to a Process Development or Technical Operations Department..."
in "Journal of Chemical Technology and Biotechnology"
In Organic Process R&D, April 2003: "This book brings together a large body of information of practical use to all pilot-plant users and people involved in scale-up. The early chapters (The Pilot Plant, Equipment and Operations) give an excellent introduction to pilot plants and how they operate with descriptions and diagrams of various pieces of equipment, whilst the later chapters (Chemical Data, Chemical Hygiene and Safety, Materials Selection, and Miscellaneous) bring together a huge amount of data, such as pKa's of common acids, bases and buffers, tables on glove selection, pressure conversion tables, and a huge compat-ibility table listing over 500 common chemicals/reagents and their compatibility with 48 different materials of construction (12 metals, 16 plastics, 19 elastomers and glass). In between are chapters with very useful practical advice on the key physical aspects of pilot-plant operation (Liquid Handling, Heat Transfer, Electricity and Instrumentation, Solvents, and Compressed Gases), which also contain tables of relevant data. There are useful tips and hints in most of the chapters and the lists of 12 Things To Do and 12 Things To Avoid during process scale-up should be part of the induction process for all new recruits in to Process Research and Development. In addition there are many useful recom-mendations for systems and protocols that will be of great value to anyone planning to install a pilot plant. The only area not covered sufficiently is continuous distillation, but this is a minor fault in an otherwise excellent book. The book is well indexed and has a comprehensive list of references, which is usefully listed alphabetically by author. It is highly recommended to all chemists and engineers working in Process Research and Development. Quite simply, every pilot plant should have one." Accepted January 16, 2003.
Scientific Update, Maycroft Place, Stone Cross, Mayfield, East Sussex TN20 6EW, United Kingdom
"The Pilot Plant Real Book contains a wealth of information pertinent to pilot plant batch operations in the fine chemical and pharmaceutical industries. The brief but insightful descriptions of the more common unit processes encountered in such pilot plants, plus key references, should be very useful to both process engineers and to process development chemists charged with developing commercial processes for such products. These engineers and chemists will find that the many data tables from a variety of sources will become key references for them. This book should be on the desks of pilot plant managers and process development engineers and chemists. I wish it had been on my own desk when I began my career in this industry."
Leader, R&D Process Development
Hampshire Chemical Division of The Dow Chemical Company; ret.
"...required reading for every scientist beginning a career in chemical research and development."
-Dr. Roger Bakale
Executive Director, Chemical Process R&D
Sepracor, Inc., Marlborough MA
"...an excellent tome...I only wish such a text had been available when I set out on my rocky path of development. The layout is very pleasing to the eye and the content is exhaustive. The presentation is workmanlike and informative without being a lecture."
-Dr. Brendon Pearl
Rhodia-Chirex, Inc., Cramlington, UK
"...This book is invaluable as reference material for all those developing processes for the pilot plant. However, the book succeeds in going beyond the status of a reference text - it assists in bridging the gap between chemists who discover new chemical processes and the chemical engineers who scale-up those processes for commercial exploitation. One cannot help but be impressed by the abundance of data, graphs, charts, tables, diagrams and formulae ... that ensure the comprehensive treatment that is lacking in many other texts on this subject. Overall, this is a very useful text that is long overdue, and which should find its rightful place both on pilot plant shelves, and in the bookcases of all those working in process development and teaching chemical plant design."
Institute of Particle Science and Engineering
University of Leeds, UK.
excerpted from: Chemical Engineering Research and Design, Sept. 2003
"It has indeed been long time coming for a book such as this. The information compiled it this text makes it simply too valuable to miss! It would be of significant advantage for college Chemistry and Engineering departments to apply much of this information to their course material, as many students have to cross a major gap when going from academia to industry. To be sure, this book will become dog-eared in a very short period of time!"
Sanofi-Synthelabo Research, Malvern PA, USA
"I received the two copies of your book. A number of my colleagues were very impressed with its content and we wish to order another 6 copies...What I like about the book is that different topics are all collected under one cover and it provides a good training document for recently graduated chemists and engineers."
Swords Laboratories - Bristol Meyers Squibb
Co. Dublin, Ireland
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