Surfactant Use for Slug Flow Pattern Suppression and New Flow Pattern Types in a Horizontal Pipe

[+] Author and Article Information
R. J. Wilkens, D. K. Thomas, S. R. Glassmeyer

 University of Dayton, 300 College Park, Dayton, OH 45469-0246

J. Fluids Eng 128(1), 164-169 (Jul 12, 2005) (6 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2062747 History: Received June 25, 2004; Revised July 12, 2005

A set of experiments was performed to study flow pattern suppression in horizontal air-water pipe flow by means of surfactant additive. Results suggest that addition of the surfactant to the gas-liquid flow significantly reduces the occurrence of slug flow. In addition, previously unreported flow patterns were observed to exist between slug and dispersed bubble flows. It is concluded that new mechanisms for slug flow transition need to be considered.

Copyright © 2006 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Figure 1

Common gas-liquid horizontal flow patterns: (a) stratified smooth, (b) stratified wavy, (c) intermittent plug, (d) intermittent slug, (e) pseudoslug, (f) annular, (g) dispersed bubble, (h) mist.

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Figure 2

University of Dayton multiphase flow loop

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Figure 3

New flow patterns: (a) stratified wavy with bubbles, (b) intermittent bubble top plug, (c) intermittent bubble top slug, (d) stratified bubble-liquid, (e) stratified gas-bubble-liquid, (f) intermittent bubbly slug

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Figure 4

Experimental flow pattern map for air/water (surface tension=72mN∕m). Shaded lines are the flow pattern map as observed in the literature (8). The data shows good agreement with expected behavior.

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Figure 5

Flow pattern map for air/220ppm SDS in 0gpg water (surface tension=64mN∕m). Note that the intermittent slug pattern has been significantly suppressed in favor of intermittent bubbly slug pattern, especially at high superficial velocities.

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Figure 6

Flow pattern map for air/1340ppm SDS in 0gpg water (surface tension=48mN∕m). Note that the intermittent slug pattern has been almost completely suppressed in favor of intermittent bubbly slug pattern.

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Figure 7

Flow pattern map for air/1140ppm SDS in 10gpg water (surface tension=30mN∕m). Note that the intermittent slug flow pattern has been totally suppressed. Comparing this to Fig. 6 shows that surfactant addition is even more effective in suppression of slug flow pattern when the water is hard than when the water is deionized.

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Figure 8

Flow pattern map for air/1375ppm LAS in 10gpg water (surface tension=30mN∕m). Surface tension alone does not establish the flow pattern map.



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