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Let us provide separation solutions for you.


distillation plant design


Stand alone and skid mounted packaged distillation and evaporation plants are a specialty for our firm.

We can design both batch and continuous units for chemical, petrochemical, biodiesel, glycerol, petroleum separations or waste concentration and water recovery. Large columns are installed at your facility off skid. We custom build to your needs with electronic instrumentation, PLC of your choice, Wonderware interface and for Group D Class I Division 2 if required.

We can also provide column startup support, troubleshooting and revamp services to increase plant capacity. We use ChemCad NXT exclusively for design, troubleshooting, and plant capacity improvements.

We offer a complete package for the optimization of existing batch distillation operations using process simulation, laboratory analysis, and a process automation package for improving yield volumes and purities.

Examples include high purity hydrogen peroxide, various specialty chemicals, amine units for natural gas and biogas, sweetening, EDC, glycols, petrochemicals and more.

We provide design of biodiesel distillation systems for the removal of methanol from glycerol methanol from biodiesel and methanol from water in wet processes. This allows your biodiesel to meet the biodiesel ASTM method D 93 specification for methanol content. The closed cup flash point must be above 130 °C (266 °F). The recovery of methanol from all streams greatly enhances your economics.

For ethanol plants we can provide debottlenecking services for the distillation system, column internals review, automation systems review and simulation of your plant utilizing ChemCad NXT for optimization and energy savings.

We also provide design of butanol distillation systems.

We also offer the Klaren Self Cleaning Fluid Bed Heat Exchanger. This is the perfect solution for reboilers that foul and ultimately plug. This can dramatically increase your onstream time. Please call, FAX or E-mail for an information packet.

An excellent document Distillation - An Introduction is highly recommended reading.

Reactive Distillation

We offer full R&D, engineering design and support for your reactive distillation project. We simulate reactive distillation with ChemCad NXT also. An interesting site on reactive distillation is shown here at the University of Michigan.

Typical reactions that are good candidates for reactive distillation are:









Distillation Column Internals / Distillation Design Software

Major Producers of distillation column internals are listed below for your convenience. Many have free software that is available by request.

Saint-Gobain NorPro Corporation (Formerly Norton)

Lantec Products, Inc.

Sulzer Chemtech



ACS Industries, Inc.


Scientific Glass & Plastic



The following Video shows typical flow in a tower with bubble cap trays


Please call for further information

R.C. Costello & Assoc., Inc.
1611 S. Pacific Coast Highway, Suite 302
Redondo Beach, CA 90277
Tel: (310) 792-5870, Fax: (310) 792-5877
E-MAIL: rcca[at]


Consulting Engineers