The rise and rationalization of the industrial phosphates industry have gone hand in hand with the development and maturation of technologies to purify phosphoric acid. In the 1960s and 70s, driven by the exponential sales growth of the detergent-builder sodium tripolyphosphate, chemical producers raced to develop processes that would provide a sufficiently pure phosphoric acid feedstock for manufacture to undercut thermal phosphoric acid made from phosphorus. As environmental and political pressure led to a collapse in demand for sodium tripolyphosphate in the 1990s, the commercial pressures to rationalize at plant and corporate levels rose such that only the fittest survived.
Phosphoric Acid: Purification, Uses, Technology, and Economics, the first and only book of its kind to be written on this topic, covers the development of purification technologies for phosphoric acid, especially solvent extraction, describing the more successful processes and setting this period in the historical context of the last 350 years. Individual chapters are devoted to the key derivative products which are still undergoing active development, as well as to sustainability and how to approach the commissioning of these plants. The text is aimed at students of chemistry, chemical engineering, business, and industrial history, and to new entrants to the industry.
Table of Contents
Terminology and Units
Introduction to the Industrial Phosphates Industry
Purification of Phosphoric Acid
Other Phosphates including Aluminum, Ammonium, Potassium, Lithium, and Magnesium
Sustainability, Safety, Health, and the Environment
Rodney B. Gilmour is a chemical engineering and project management consultant with over 30 years of industry experience. An expert in the technical field of phosphoric acid purification and industrial phosphates, he has undertaken a wide range of assignments in this area; held maintenance, commissioning, development, and project engineering roles at Imperial Chemical Industries (ICI) , London, UK; served as plant engineer of an ICI vinyl chloride plant; and held senior engineering positions at Albright & Wilson, London, UK . Currently he is director of process engineering design on Line Limited, High Peak, UK.
"This book is an essential read for anybody associated with the phosphoric acid industry and important for those interested in the development of the process industries. Phosphoric acid is the basic building block of many of the products we take for granted from fertilizers, food additives, for corrosion prevention, etc. This book describes the process for the production of phosphoric acid from phosphorite rock and its evolution over the last century."
—Professor Geoffrey W. Stevens, The University of Melbourne, Australia
"A very good read indeed, I enjoyed the introduction from an historical perspective, as well as the later chapters that covered the technical complexities of the WPA and PWA industries. An interesting primer on what it took and takes to succeed in the purified phosphoric acid business."
—Dr. Vaughn V. Astley, Dr. Phosphate, Inc., Lakeland, Florida, USA
"Production of phosphoric acid and its derivatives is a global business … The book is comprehensive … The fact that the later chapters of the book deal with sustainability/recycling issues distinguishes it from competitor texts …"
—Dr. Paul Grassia, The University of Manchester, UK
"This book is the very first one focused on purification technology and makes a very precise summary of existing technics and units….may be the future bedside book for technicians and engineers of this industry."
—Yasef Murat, Corporate Director of Technology, Innophos, Cranbury Township, New Jersey, USA
"…gives an overall introduction on the history of phosphor discovery and utilization, reviews the production and application of phosphoric acid from fundamentals to engineering. Due to the clear outline, first-hand materials and concise summary, it is easy-to-read and well-inspired for multi-disciplinary students."
—Professor Guangsheng Luo, Tsinghua University, Beijing, China