An alkylation system to convert benzene and ethylene to ethylbenzene. A small fraction of the ethylbenzene is further alkylated to polyethylbenzenes (PEB).
A transalkylation system to react PEB with benzene to produce additional ethylbenzene. Transalkylation is isothermal.
A distillation train to recycle excess benzene to reactors, isolate ethylbenzene as product, and recover PEB for transalkylation and to reject heavy byproducts that can be used as a fuel.
The ethylbenzene produced contains less than 100 ppm of xylene plus propylbenzene impurities. Product purities of 99.95 to 99.99% are regularly achieved in commercial operation.