Publications Repository - Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf

1 Publication

Flow regime transition in open-cell solid foam packed reactors: Adaption of the relative permeability concept and experimental validation

Zalucky, J.; Möller, F.; Schubert, M.; Hampel, U.


The trickle-to-pulse flow regime transition in silicon-infiltrated silicon carbide (SiSiC) foam packed fixed bed reactors has been investigated. Based on the film stability concepts of Grosser et al.1 (DOI: 10.1002/aic.690341111) as well as Attou and Ferschneider2 (DOI: 10.1016/S0009-2509(99)00344-9), two predictive models have been adapted to foams’ specific geometric parameters. To account for the different nature of solid foams and their interactions with various fluids, the fixed bed characteristics (specific surface area and bed porosity) and fluid specific parameters (gas and liquid density, liquid viscosity, surface tension) have been incorporated in the model. Ergun parameters and static liquid holdup which are required for the modelling of the prevailing tractive forces were determined experimentally.
The modelling results were compared to regime transition measurements performed for SiSiC solid foams with different linear pore densities (20, 30 and 45 PPI), for different reactor diameters (50 and 100 mm) and initial liquid distributors (spray cone nozzle and multipoint distributor) as well as liquids with various physicochemical properties (water, Tergitol®, 50% glycerin) under ambient operating conditions. Compared to conventional random fixed bed reactors, the onset of pulsing in solid foam packed fixed beds is significantly shifted towards larger liquid and gas fluxes allowing high throughputs in the trickle regime. Moreover, the homogeneity of initial liquid distribution strongly affects the trickle-to-pulse flow transition.

Keywords: Solid foam packing; trickle-bed reactor; flow regime transition; relative permeability concept; static holdup

Involved research facilities

  • TOPFLOW Facility