Studies on the prediction of phase disengagement in a continuous settler from batch settling data have been carried out. An equation to predict the variation of dispersion band height with dispersion throughput has been derived. The batch decay curve of the present system showed a typical sigmoidal decay mode, at the first stage of which free sedimentation of drops controlled the overall rate, while at the second stage the drop-drop and drop-interface coalescence dominated. It was found that the initial drop size and dispersed phase hold-up had to be taken into account in the interpretation of dispersion behaviour in a continuous settler. It can be concluded that it is possible to express the dispersion band thickness in terms of parameters proposed in this model and that the dispersed liquid drops collapse through an identical coalescence mechanism in both the batch and the continuous settlers. © 1993.
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