Chemicals & Petrochemicals

Transforming the way industry designs and operates

PSE's gPROMS Advanced Process Modelling software and services are transforming the way the chemical industries design and operate.

The combination of high-fidelity reactor and separation models and advanced optimisation techniques make it possible to dramatically accelerate next-generation process design and identify millions of dollars from 'already-optimised' processes.

PSE's laboratory-to-operating-plant approach brings many benefits – helping to optimise design and operation, reduce time-to-market and risk for new process development, and minimise capital and operating cost.

gPROMS ProcessBuilder – Advanced Process Simulation

PSE's offering for Chemicals & Petrochemicals is built on the flagship gPROMS ProcessBuilder product.

ProcessBuilder is an Advanced Process Simulation environment that brings many unique advantages over traditional flowsheeting tools.

Its powerful equation-oriented modelling framework opens the door to advanced applications that add significant competitve advantage.

Key products for Chemicals & Petrochemicals are

gPROMS ProcessBuilder is an Advanced Process Simulation flowsheeting environment that provides world-leading reaction and separation model libraries within an optimisation framework.

gSOLIDS is a flowsheeting environment for optimisation of batch and continuous solids process design and operation.

gCRYSTAL is a dedicated environment for optimising batch and continuous crystallization process design and operation.

gSAFT provides advanced materials modelling for associating systems and long-chain molecules, including next-generation group contribution techniques.

Key process areas

PSE tools provide advanced process modelling capabilities for many key Chemicals & Petrochemicals process operations. Some examples are:

Advanced reactor design and operational optimisation

Advanced reaction modelling technology makes it possible to design detailed reactors and include these in whole-plant flowsheet optimisations.
This means that you can optimise process designs taking all relevant interactions into account.

State-of-the-art separation system modelling

ProcessBuilder provides state-of-the-art capabilities for steady-state and dynamic equilibrium distillation, rate based separation, pressure-swing adsorption, membrane separation and hybrid separation.

Solution crystallization

PSE provides unique capabilities for design, scale-up and operational optimisation of batch and continuous crystallization processes, including recipe optimisation.

Solids process modelling

PSE's unique capabilities for batch, continuous and semi-batch solids process operations use high-fidelity rigorous models to optimise design and operations.

Cyclic separation processes

The power of the gPROMS environment allows easy solution of complex complex separation processes such as pressure-swing adsorption.

Compression systems

ProcessBuilder's extensive compressor libraries allow accurate design of multi-stage equipment, surge analysis and other compressor design and operational analysis based on high-fidelity dynamic models incorporating manufacturers' curves.

Advanced applications

In addition to the usual steady-state and dynamic simulation, the gPROMS environment makes possible many new advanced applications.

The ability to perform detailed reactor design, whole-plant optimisation, true batch plant optimisation, process synthesis and optimisation of equipment configuration, for example, help add unique competitive advantage in a ways that has never before been possible within process flowsheeting tools.

Typical processes

These are just some of the types of process to which gPROMS technology has been applied:

Partial oxidation processes

PSE provides extensive and unique capabilities for design of fixed-bed catalytic reactors for the manufacture of acrylic acid, ethylene oxide, maleic anhydride and many other partial oxidation processes. Models are also used to screen and rank catalysts, and to eliminate hotspots in order to prolong catalyst life.

Gas-liquid reaction processses

Our high-fidelity gas-liquid reactor models (stirred tank and bubble column) are used to design reactor internals for and optimise performance of processes such as terephthalic acid (TPA) or purified terephthalic aid (PTA) production, among others.

Gas-to-Liquid (GTL) processes

PSE is a leading provider of modelling capabilities and services for design and operational optimisation of slurry-bed, multitubular and monolith Fischer-Tropsch gas-to-liquid reactors, via our AML for Fischer-Tropsch Reactors.

Steam reforming processes

The Advanced Model Library for Fixed-Bed Catalytic Reactors (AML:FBCR) can be used for accurate design of steam reforming processes. PSE can also provide models for monolith reactors.

Olefins production

PSE's steam cracker models, distillation and peripheral plant models can be combined in whole-plant optimisation, bringing a new level of analysis and potential value creation to the industry.

Air separation

ProcessBuilder solves processes such as air separation units (ASUs), with multiple interacting mass and energy recycles, in seconds rather than hours. This open the door to rapid sensitivity analysis and true process optimisation for the first time.


There are many economic benefits to be gained by applying advanced process modelling techniques to the design and operation of chemical processes.

Typical benefits are: enhanced throughput and quality, reduced capital or operating cost, lower energy cost, better compliance with environment and safety obligations, greater flexibility through the use of alternative feedstocks, accelerated innovation and better-managed risk to name a few.

Many of these can be achieved with little or no capital expenditure, little disruption to operation and very short payback time – in many cases only 6 to 12 months.

How do we do this?

All of the above are achieved using PSE's gPROMS ProcessBuilder advanced process simulation package and libraries.

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