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answered Nov 1, 2014 by ChemKB (8,210 points)
 
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Pros

  • The PHE has the following advantages over conventional shell and tube heat exchangers:
  • Easy to disassemble for cleaning.
  • Adaptable to the difference service conditions, i.e, plates can be rearranged, added to, or removed from the plate rack
  • Due to the short fluid residence time it has low fluid volume to surface area ratio.
  • Advantageous for temperature sensitive fluids since no hot or cold spots exist.
  • Less susceptible to the fluid leakage between streams unless plate material fails.
  • Fluid leakage due to a defective or damaged gasket is external and easily detected.
  • Due to the high turbulence created by the plates it has typically low fouling tendency.
  • Much smaller size relative to a shell and tube type heat exchanger for the same service.

Cons

  • Prone to gasket damage during disassembly, cleaning, and reassembly, extra precaution must be taken by maintenance personnel.
  • A relatively low upper design temperature limitation exists.
  • A relatively low upper design pressure limitation exists.
  • Gasket materials are not suitable for all process fluids.
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