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Hydrodynamics of Microbubble Suspension Flow in Pipes

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journal contribution
posted on 05.03.2014, 00:00 by Rajeev Parmar, Subrata Kumar Majumder
Microbubbles exhibit excellent gas-dissolution abilities owing to their larger gas–liquid interfacial areas and longer residence times compared to conventional larger bubbles. Hence, it is expected that microbubbles should increase the efficiency of gas–liquid contact devices for various applications in chemical and biochemical processes. In most of these applications, it is necessary to understand the hydrodynamics, such as the rheology, pressure drop, and friction factor, associated with microbubble flow in devices. This study investigates the hydrodynamic characteristics of the flow of a microbubble suspension in a surfactant solution through a pipe. A mechanistic model has been developed to analyze the interfacial stress of microbubble suspension flow in a pipe by considering bubble formation, drag at the interface, and loss of energy due to wettability. A correlation between the intensity factor of interfacial stress and the friction factor based on energy loss due to wettability has been developed. The functional form of the correlation appears to predict the hydrodynamics satisfactorily for the flow of a microbubble suspension in a pipe. The present study might be helpful in further understanding multiphase flow for industrial applications.