Universitat de Girona (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2018 Proceedings
Publication year: 2018
Pages: 9440-9444
ISBN: 978-84-09-05948-5
ISSN: 2340-1095
doi: 10.21125/iceri.2018.0753
Conference name: 11th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 12-14 November, 2018
Location: Seville, Spain
Actually, new methods are introduced to understand and simulate industrial processes to help students in their comprehension and clarify their use. The objective of this paper is to explain the experience to promote studies in Chemical Engineering at Girona University (UdG) to secondary student’s schools using a demonstration with a plant of deodorant stick production.

Chemical engineering is one of the most important sector of world economy with more than 3.4 trillion euros of annual sales. Economic predictions estimate that in 2030 this value will be beyond of 6 trillion. If we look around at the European economy, we see very clearly the importance of chemical industry with the 15% sales of global chemical market. The EU chemical industry sales are classified by sectoral breakdown in 25.9% petrochemicals, 27.2% specialty chemicals, 21.6% polymers, 13.6% consumer chemicals and 11.7% basic inorganics. However, the population have negative perception of chemical industry. For various reasons the new generations have the association of chemical industry as polluting activity. But the fact is that the society demand chemical products and at the same time the reduction of chemical pollution and its risks. In consequence, the chemical engineering students in the universities decrease but the society increasingly requires young chemical engineers with new ideas.

In this context, members of Chemical Engineering Department (UdG) developed a demonstration plant of deodorant stick production. This project born from the desire to bring chemical engineering view of the products to the students in the secondary school and baccalaureate.

Using as a basis the esterification reaction between stearic acid and sodium hydroxide, the designed demonstration plant show to the students the importance of correct process dimension, heat transfer and the automatization and control on the chemical industry. In this case, the students can see and notice the sequential control of a deodorant production process. Initially, when the students activate the sequence with a switch the necessary amount of water is introduced on the reactor and heated to 75°C. Then when the temperature was reach the amount of stearic acid and propylene glycol automatically is discharged into the reactor. After that, a timer is initiated and after 1 minute sodium hydroxide and glycerin are delivered into the reactor. Finally, the students can introduce the solution on the stick and after its cooling they obtain the deodorant ready for use.

The result of this experience was excellent and our goal was achieved. The process and the results of this innovative method are described in the procedure carried out. It is demonstrate that these types of actions approximate the work done by chemical engineers to the benefit of the population, creating a positive image helping to increase vocations in this professional field.
Chemical engineering, innovation, simulator.