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Research Papers: Multiphase Flows

Experimental Investigation of Horizontal Gas–Liquid Stratified and Annular Flow Using Wire-Mesh Sensor

[+] Author and Article Information
Ronald E. Vieira

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
The University of Tulsa,
800 South Tucker Drive,
Tulsa, OK 74104
e-mail: rev87@utulsa.edu

Netaji R. Kesana

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
The University of Tulsa,
800 South Tucker Drive,
Tulsa, OK 74104
e-mail: nrk301@utulsa.edu

Carlos F. Torres

Thermal Science Department,
University of Los Andes,
Mérida 5101, Venezuela
e-mail: ctorres@ula.ve

Brenton S. McLaury

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
The University of Tulsa,
800 South Tucker Drive,
Tulsa, OK 74104
e-mail: brenton-mclaury@utulsa.edu

Siamack A. Shirazi

Fellow ASME
Department of Mechanical Engineering,
The University of Tulsa,
800 South Tucker Drive,
Tulsa, OK 74104
e-mail: siamack-shirazi@utulsa.edu

Eckhard Schleicher

Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR),
Dresden, Saxony 01328, Germany
e-mail: e.schleicher@hzdr.de

Uwe Hampel

Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR),
Dresden, Saxony 01328, Germany
e-mail: u.hampel@hzdr.de

Contributed by the Fluids Engineering Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF FLUIDS ENGINEERING. Manuscript received September 24, 2013; final manuscript received May 28, 2014; published online September 10, 2014. Assoc. Editor: Michael G. Olsen.

J. Fluids Eng 136(12), 121301 (Sep 10, 2014) (16 pages) Paper No: FE-13-1571; doi: 10.1115/1.4027799 History: Received September 24, 2013; Revised May 28, 2014

Stratified and annular gas–liquid flow patterns are commonly encountered in many industrial applications, such as oil and gas transportation pipelines, heat exchangers, and process equipment. The measurement and visualization of two-phase flow characteristics are of great importance as two-phase flows persist in many fluids engineering applications. A wire-mesh sensor (WMS) technique based on conductance measurements has been applied to investigate two-phase horizontal pipe flow. The horizontal flow test section consisting of a 76.2 mm ID pipe, 18 m long was employed to generate stratified and annular flow conditions. Two 16 × 16 wire configuration sensors, installed 17 m from the inlet of the test section, are used to determine the void fraction within the cross section of the pipe and determine interface velocities between the gas and liquid. These physical flow parameters were extracted using signal processing and cross-correlation techniques. In this work, the principle of WMS and the methodology of flow parameter extraction are described. From the obtained raw data time series of void fraction, cross-sectional mean void fraction, time averaged void fraction profiles, interfacial structures, and velocities of the periodic structures are determined for different liquid and gas superficial velocities that ranged from 0.03 m/s to 0.2 m/s and from 9 m/s to 34 m/s, respectively. The effects of liquid viscosity on the measured parameters have also been investigated using three different viscosities.

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Figures

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Fig. 1

Dimensions of the applied WMS. Cross-sectional view (left) and 3D CAD drawing view (right). The distance between the first and the second sensor was 32 mm.

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Fig. 2

Schematic of large-scale boom loop

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Fig. 3

Dual WMSs installed in the pipe

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Fig. 4

Investigated area of flow conditions for stratified and annular flow: 1 cP water viscosity in blue, 10 cP water + CMC in red, and 40 cP water + CMC in green

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Fig. 5

Cross-correlation sample result between two planes of the dual WMSs for different superficial gas velocities at VSL = 0.2 m/s and μL = 1 cP

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Fig. 6

Void fraction sequence for stratified-slug transition. VSG = 9 m/s, VSL = 0.2 m/s, and μL = 1 cP. The liquid is shown in blue and the gas in white color.

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Fig. 7

Void fraction sequence for stratified-wavy flow: VSG = 18 m/s, VSL = 0.2 m/s, and μL = 1 cP. The liquid is shown in blue and the gas in white color.

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Fig. 8

Time series of cross-sectionally averaged void fraction for stratified-slug transition: VSG = 9 m/s, VSL = 0.2 m/s, and μL = 1 cP

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Fig. 9

Time series of cross-sectionally averaged void fraction for stratified-wavy flow: VSG = 18 m/s, VSL = 0.2 m/s, and μL = 1 cP

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Fig. 10

Effect of liquid viscosity on the time series of cross-sectionally averaged void for stratified-wavy flow: VSG = 18 m/s; VSL = 0.2 m/s; μL = 1 cP, 10 cP, and 40 cP

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Fig. 11

Contours of local time averaged void fraction for stratified-slug transition: VSG = 9 m/s, VSL = 0.2 m/s, and μL = 1 cP

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Fig. 12

Contours of local time averaged void fraction for stratified-wavy flow: VSG = 18 m/s, VSL = 0.2 m/s, and μL = 1 cP

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Fig. 13

Contours of local time averaged void fraction for annular flow: VSG = 30 m/s, VSL = 0.03 m/s, and μL = 1 cP

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Fig. 14

Effect of viscosity on local time averaged void fraction for slug-stratified transition: (a) VSG = 9 m/s, VSL = 0.2 m/s, and μL = 10 cP and (b) VSG = 9 m/s, VSL = 0.2 m/s, and μL = 40 cP

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Fig. 15

Cross-sectionally time averaged or mean void fraction for different liquid viscosities: VSL = 0.03 m/s

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Fig. 16

Cross-sectionally time averaged or mean void fraction for different liquid viscosities: VSL = 0.2 m/s

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Fig. 17

Selected area (in yellow) for vertical void fraction profile placed between the film (in blue) and the gas core region (in red)

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Fig. 18

Time averaged void fraction vertical profile in the bottom liquid film region

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Fig. 19

Standard deviation of time averaged void fraction profiles in the bottom film region

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Fig. 20

Contour plot of standard deviation of local time average void fraction for stratified-wavy flow: VSG = 18 m/s, VSL = 0.2 m/s, and μL = 1 cP

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Fig. 21

Standard deviation of local average void fraction for stratified-wavy flow: (a) VSG = 18 m/s, VSL = 0.03 m/s, and μL = 10 cP and (b) VSG = 18 m/s, VSL = 0.03 m/s, and μL = 40 cP

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Fig. 22

Influence of liquid viscosity on the structure of liquid waves and slugs: VSG = 9 m/s, VSL = 0.2 m/s. (a) μL = 1 cP, time step = 1×10-3 s, 1500 frames; (b) μL = 10 cP, time step = 1×10-3 s, 1500 frames; and (c) μL = 40 cP, time step = 1×10-3 s, 1500 frames.

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Fig. 23

Influence of liquid viscosity on the structure of stratified-wavy-flow: VSG = 18 m/s, VSL = 0.2 m/s; (a) μL = 1 cP, time step = 1×10-3 s, 1500 frames; (b) μL = 10 cP, time step = 1×10-3 s, 1500 frames; and (c) μL = 40 cP, time step = 1×10-3 s, 1500 frames

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Fig. 25

Structure velocities for VSL = 0.03 m/s and liquid viscosities of 1 cP and 10 cP

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Fig. 26

Structure velocities for VSL = 0.2 m/s and liquid viscosities of 1 cP and 10 cP

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