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Concepts of Chemical Engineering 4 Chemists (RSC '4' Chemists)

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This book is meant as a handbook and resource guide for chemists (and other scientists) who either find themselves working alongside chemical engineers or who are undertaking chemical engineering-type projects and who wish to communicate with their colleagues and understand chemical engineering principles. The book has arisen out of the short course, Concepts of Chemical Engineering for Chemists, held annually at UCL since 1999 and the forerunner to the Royal Society of Chemistry’s ‘‘4 Chemists’’ series of professional training courses, of which it is now part. It can be used as accompanying material for the course, or as a stand-alone reference book. The course itself is designed to provide basic information on the main aspects of chemical engineering in a relatively simple, but practical, manner. Hence, while this book tries to emulate this, it also includes worked examples, plus extensive reference lists and bibliographies in order that the reader can research elsewhere for more detail and for aspects that are not covered in the book.

This book aims to give chemists an insight into the world of chemical engineering, outlining the basic concepts and explaining the terminology of, and systems approach to, process design. It can be said that chemists create new molecules and compounds and chemical engineers manufacture these into useful products on a commercial scale, but, of course, the two disciplines do not work in isolation; chemistry and chemical engineering are intertwined. One only has to look at the history of chemical engineering and its origins in chemistry (or, more correctly, applied chemistry) to appreciate the close relationship between the two and their shared foundation in molecular behaviour. The reader is referred to Darton et al.’s collection of visionary essays on chemical engineering’s role in society1 and the Whitesides report, ‘‘Beyond the Molecular Frontier’’,2 which reflect on the importance of chemists and chemical engineering working effectively together to tackle the enormous challenges facing the world today.

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