A methodology that may be applied to help in the choice of a continuous reactor is proposed. In this methodology, the chemistry is first described through the use of eight simple criteria (rate, thermicity, deactivation, solubility, conversion, selectivity, viscosity, and catalyst). Then, each reactor type is also analyzed from their capability to answer each of these criteria. A final score is presented using “spider diagrams.” Lower surfaces indicate the best reactor choice. The methodology is exemplified with a model substrate nitrobenzene and a target pharmaceutical intermediate, N-methyl-4-nitrobenzenemethanesulphonamide, and for three different continuous reactors, i.e., stirred tank, fixed bed, and an advanced microstructured reactor. Comparison with the traditional batch reactor is also provided.
1. Roberge, D. M.Org. Proc. Res. Dev. 2004, 8, 1049–1053;
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