Visual Encyclopedia of Chemical Engineering Equipment

by Susan Montgomery – University of Michigan, Chemical
Engineering Department, Multimedia Education Laboratory


We have developed a visual encyclopedia of chemical engineering
equipment for use in all undergraduate chemical engineering courses.
The purpose of this encyclopedia is to provide students with a basic
understanding of what chemical engineering equipment looks like and how
it works. It is intended for use for use as a general reference for
students in courses spanning the introductory course through the
capstone design course, as well as for classroom presentation, for
example prior to covering a given chemical engineering topic.

The over 100 pieces of chemical engineering equipment are organized
into the nine categories shown in below, and an index/glossary is also
provided for ease of access.

Categories of Chemical Engineering Equipment

  1. Process Parameters
  2. Flowmeters
  3. Transport and Storage
  4. Chemical Separations
  5. Mechanical Separations
  6. Heat Transfer
  7. Reactors
  8. Polymer Processing
  9. Materials Handling
  10. Organization

The description for each piece of equipment is divided into: General
Information, Equipment Design, Usage Examples, Advantages /
Disadvantages, and References. This leads the user from a brief
description of how the equipment works to more in-depth details of its
operation; examples of industries in which the equipment is used;
comparisons with other types of equipment; and resources for more
information. Note that information needed to design equipment is not

At the heart of the encyclopedia are pictures of actual equipment,
obtained from equipment manufacturers, animations showing how the
equipment works, and pictures of applications of the equipment in a
wide variety of fields. Figures 1 through 4 show typical screens from
some of the applications.

For more information on the encyclopedia and other materials produced
by our laboratory and distributed by CACHE, please visit
It contains an online example that demonstrates a subsection of the


Due to recent online availability of this software, the production of the CD version has been discontinued. The modules are available at