ASPEN Plus in the Chemical Engineering Curriculum: Suitable Course Content and Teaching Methodology


  • David A. Rockstraw New Mexico State University


An established methodology involving the sequential presentation of five skills on ASPEN Plus to undergraduate seniors majoring in ChE is presented in this document: (1) specifying unit operations; (2) manipulating physical properties; (3) accessing variables; (4) specifying nonstandard components; and (5) applying advanced features. This manuscript does not attempt to teach the software, nor does it contain teaching materials for use by instructors. Lecture resources drawn from numerous sources are available online on the homepage of the author on the Chemical Engineering Department's web server at New Mexico State University ( Demonstration files can be obtained from the author, as well as the Knowledge Base of the ASPENTech website (

Author Biography

David A. Rockstraw, New Mexico State University

David A. Rockstraw is Associate Professor of Chemical Engineering at New Mexico State University. He worked at DuPont, Conoco, Ethyl, and Kraft prior to joining the NMSU faculty, and has been an active ASPEN Plus user since 1990, applying the simulator to numerous commercial syntheses. He was a coauthor of the problem statement for the 1999 American Institute of Chemical Engineers' national design contest and received the 2004 Aspen Tech Educational Innovation Award.