During operational transients or a hypothetical LOCA (loss of coolant accident) condition, the recirculating coolant of PWR (pressurized water reactor) may flash into steam due to a loss of line pressure. Under such two-phase flow conditions, it is well known that the recirculation pump becomes unable to generate the same head as that of the single-phase flow case. Similar situations also exist in oil well submersible pumps where a fair amount of gas is contained in oil. Based on the one dimensional control volume method, an analytical method has been developed to determine the performance of pumps operating under two-phase flow conditions. The analytical method has incorporated pump geometry, void fraction, flow slippage and flow regime into the basic formula, but neglected the compressibility and condensation effects. During the course of model development, it has been found that the head degradation is mainly caused by higher acceleration on liquid phase and deceleration on gas phase than in the case of single-phase flows. The numerical results for head degradations and torques obtained with the model favorably compared with the air/water two-phase flow test data of Babcock and Wilcox (1/3 scale) and Creare (1/20 scale) pumps.

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