Laura Annamaria Pellegrini is Full Professor of Chemical Plants (ING-IND/25) and is currently teaching “Unit Operations of Chemical Plants” to undergraduate students in Chemical Engineering.
She leads GASP (“Group on Advanced Separation Processes & GAS Processing” - https://gasp.chem.polimi.it/), a group involved in research activities and projects regarding mainly the purification of sour gases and CO2 capture. The focus is both on the process simulation, with particular attention to energy saving, and on the thermodynamic characterization of the systems.
Her research interests focus on modelling and simulation of separation processes and reacting systems in steady state and under transient conditions, using also commercial simulation packages like Aspen Plus®, Aspen HYSYS®, Promax®, Prosim®.
She has a significant scientific production on hydrocracking modelling (pathway-level scheme), due to a past cooperation with Eni S.p.A.. Currently, always with Eni S.p.A., she is involved in the HydroClaus project, studying, mainly for the modelling of the kinetic scheme, an innovative process for the alternative use of sulphur from gas purification plants in agriculture.
A significant research topic concerns Acid Gas Removal (AGR) by amine washing. “Ad hoc” subroutines have been developed, which are currently used by engineering companies for the design of natural gas / biogas purification plants, as well as for the study of energy optimized configurations for CO2 capture from power plants (pre-combustion and post-combustion). Recently her interest has focused on new solvents, with the aim on the one hand of using bio compounds and on the other of reducing the energy demand at the regeneration unit (solvents with liquid phase demixing, amino acids).
As to cryogenic techniques for AGR, Laura Annamaria Pellegrini is the inventor of the patent “Process for the removal of CO2 from acid gas”, W.O. Patent 2014/054945A2. The distillation process is profitable in comparison with traditional amine washing for natural gas with a a CO2 content > 8÷10% mol. A pilot plant of the DCCD™ process is now in operation.
Laura Annamaria Pellegrini has been involved in the study of downstream separations in the production process of butanol through acetone-butanol-ethanol (ABE) and, recently, in downstream separations of biofuel production processes for Eni S.p.A..
In the field of thermodynamics, she collaborated with Ing. Giorgio Soave on thermodynamic modeling of VLE and of VLLE and has an ongoing collaboration with CTP (Center Thermodynamics of Processes) of MINES ParisTech, mainly on equilibria involving solid phase formation, a key topic for process validation under cryogenic conditions. The "Process Thermodynamics laboratory - PT lab", recently created at Department CMIC, allows the collection of experimental data of VLE and VLLE, also for strongly non-ideal systems, for which literature data are missing.
Laura Annamaria Pellegrini is member of the European section of the Gas Processors Association.
She is associate of Istituto Nazionale di Fisica Nucleare and she is involved in the DarkSide collaborations and in the ARIA project for the production by cryogenic distillation of Argon depleted in 39Ar. In this area she studies the separation of isotopic mixtures.
She has collaborations in Italy and worldwide. She is/was project manager of numerous research contracts between Politecnico di Milano and external companies.
Laura Annamaria Pellegrini is author and co-author of more than two hundred scientific publications released on international journals and books or presented at national and international conferences.
She has operated as referee of International Congresses and as peer reviewer for international journals.
She has been advisor/external reviewer of several Italian and foreign PhD theses.