A. Introduction and Motivation
The chemical industry has undergone a series of historical developments since the 19th century. The industrial revolution and the increasing demand for consumer goods led to the birth of many global chemical companies (e.g. BASF, Bayer, Hoechst), which dominated the dye markets in the early 1900s. Industrial research and development then was based on chemical innovation and discovery, and this was mainly performed by organic chemists. Production in this era was small-scaled and fragmented.[2, 3] As the emphasis of the chemical industry slowly migrated to large-scale factory production, engineering and process development gained its importance. Although the present day chemical industry has matured further and become extremely complex and diversified, process development nevertheless retained its role as a vital component in every company. Process development is a commonly used term in the field of engineering science and its principles have a very broad scope of applications. Putting the focus here on chemical engineering aspects and chemical process design, chemical process development is the basic step from its stage of infancy to industrialisation and commercialisation. It is part and parcel of the chemical industry and embodies the core activity of any research and development unit in a chemical company. A scale-up flowsheet (Fig. 1) has been used by Carberry to describe the role of process development between exploratory studies to plant operation.