Publications Repository - Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf

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Experimental investigation and modeling of air/water flows in vertical pipes

Lucas, D.; Krepper, E.; Prasser, H.-M.


CFD codes are more and more used for practical applications as the design and optimization of technical facilities, e.g. in process industry or in nuclear power plants. For most cases this limited to single phase flows. To qualify CFD codes for two-phase flows, they have to be equipped with constitutive laws describing the interaction between the gaseous and the liquid phases. In the case of bubble flow this particularly concerns the forces acting on the bubbles and bubble coalescence and break-up. To obtain detailed experimental data, an electrode wire-mesh sensor was used, which enables the measurement of the phase distribution with high reso-lution in space and in time. Air-water flow at ambient conditions in a vertical pipe (51.2 mm inner diameter) is investigated to have well defined boundary condi-tions. Local bubble size distributions are calculated from the data. The measure-ments were done in different distances from the gas injection device. As a result the development of bubble size distributions and the development of the radial gas fraction profiles can be studied. It was found, that the bubble size distribution as well as local effects determine the transition from bubble flow to slug flow. The data are used for the development of a model, which predicts the development of the bubble size distribution and the transition from bubble flow to slug flow in case of stationary flow in a vertical pipe.

Keywords: CFD; Two-Phase Flow; Pipe; Bubble Flow; Slug Flow

  • In: M. Sommerfeld (Ed.), Bubbly Flows - Analysis, Modelling and Calculation, Heat and Mass Transfer Series, Springer-Verlag,Berlin, Heidelberg, 2004, pp. 101-115