The Transient Response of Orifices and Very Short Lines

[+] Author and Article Information
J. E. Funk, D. J. Wood, S. P. Chao

University of Kentucky, Lexington, Ky.

J. Basic Eng 94(2), 483-489 (Jun 01, 1972) (7 pages) doi:10.1115/1.3425456 History: Received July 23, 1971; Online October 27, 2010


It is generally assumed that orifices and valves follow closely their steady-state characteristics during transient operation. However, this assumption of quasisteady behavior may lead to errors in predicting transient flow conditions under certain circumstances. In order to evaluate the transient behavior of an orifice, a differential equation relating the flow through and the pressure drop across an orifice was derived. An extension was made to include an axial dimension for the orifice. The solution of this equation for transient flow through an orifice subjected to a step change in pressure drop across the orifice is significantly different than that obtained using the steady state relationship. An experiment was designed to evaluate the theoretical results in which an orifice on the end of a line was subjected to a sudden pressure change and the resulting transient pressures were observed. It was found that a significant short term transient occurs before the orifice flow reaches the new steady state condition. The observed short term transient agrees well with that predicted by the theory. It is concluded that the behavior of an orifice can deviate considerably from that predicted by steady-state equations during periods of rapid pressure or flow changes. The dynamic description of orifice flow may be combined with a larger system analysis (e.g., using the method of characteristics) to more accurately predict the overall transient performance of flow systems.

Copyright © 1972 by ASME
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