The second edition of the Working Guide to Process Equipment is written in down-to-earth language that is very comprehensible. Authors Norman and Elizabeth Lieberman are right-on when noting that no normal person will read this book for fun and relaxation. However, it is, without a doubt, an invaluable tool in the process-engineering world. And, as the skills involved in good process engineering disappear, you will find that these pages of insight from industry experts are worth their weight in gold.
The authors cover a lot of information, and they point out that if you read it all in sequence, there are threads of logic that tie each component together. In other words, they deliver on the promise that they have gone back to the simplest basis for understanding process equipment. In every chapter you will read about how the equipment behaves in the field (how field trays, control tower pressure, distillation towers, and reboilers work) and why it does. You will also read about how instruments, packed towers and steam, and condensate systems work. The authors will teach you about bubble point and dew point, steam strippers, draw-off nozzle hydraulics, pumparounds, and tower heat flows -- not to mention air coolers. They will also address vacuum systems, surface condensers, fired heaters, and centrifugal pumps. In addition, the authors show you how to do simple technical calculations.
The guiding idea of this book is that it is better to have a working knowledge of a few simple ideas than a superficial knowledge of many complex theoretical subjects. In other words, you cannot help but gain knowledge and benefit vicariously from the information, experience, and examples these authors deliver. If you work in this field, this book is one you will not want to miss. John Vacca
John Vacca, the former computer security official (CSO) for NASA's space station program (Freedom), has written 38 books about advanced storage, computer security, and aerospace technology.