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Suspension flow through an asymmetric T-junction

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  04 April 2018

Sojwal Manoorkar
Affiliation:
Benjamin Levich Institute and Department of Chemical Engineering, The City College of New York, New York, NY 10031, USA
Sreenath Krishnan
Affiliation:
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305, USA
Omer Sedes
Affiliation:
Benjamin Levich Institute and Department of Chemical Engineering, The City College of New York, New York, NY 10031, USA
Eric S. G. Shaqfeh
Affiliation:
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305, USA Department of Chemical Engineering, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305, USA Institute for Computational and Mathematical Engineering, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305, USA
Gianluca Iaccarino
Affiliation:
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305, USA
Jeffrey F. Morris
Affiliation:
Benjamin Levich Institute and Department of Chemical Engineering, The City College of New York, New York, NY 10031, USA
Corresponding
E-mail address:

Abstract

The flow of a suspension through a bifurcating channel is studied experimentally and by computational methods. The geometry considered is an ‘asymmetric T’, as flow in the entering branch divides to either continue straight or to make a right angle turn. All branches are of the same square cross-section of side length $D$ , with inlet and outlet section lengths $L$ yielding $L/D=58$ in the experiments. The suspensions are composed of neutrally buoyant spherical particles in a Newtonian liquid, with mean particle diameters of $d=250~\unicode[STIX]{x03BC}\text{m}$ and $480~\unicode[STIX]{x03BC}\text{m}$ resulting in $d/D\approx 0.1$ to $d/D\approx 0.2$ for $D=2.4~\text{mm}$ . The flow rate ratio $\unicode[STIX]{x1D6FD}=Q_{\Vert }/Q_{0}$ , defined for the bulk, fluid and particles, is used to characterize the flow behaviour; here $Q_{\Vert }$ and $Q_{0}$ are volumetric flow rates in the straight outlet branch and inlet branch, respectively. The channel Reynolds number $Re=(\unicode[STIX]{x1D70C}DU)/\unicode[STIX]{x1D702}$ was varied over $0<Re<900$ , with $\unicode[STIX]{x1D70C}$ and $\unicode[STIX]{x1D702}$ the fluid density and viscosity, respectively, and $U$ the mean velocity in the inlet channel; the inlet particle volume fraction was $0.05\leqslant \unicode[STIX]{x1D719}_{0}\leqslant 0.30$ . Experimental and numerical results for single-phase Newtonian fluid both show $\unicode[STIX]{x1D6FD}$ increasing with $Re$ , implying more material tending toward the straight branch as the inertia of the flow increases. In suspension flow at small $\unicode[STIX]{x1D719}_{0}$ , inertial migration of particles in the inlet branch affects the flow rate ratio for particles ( $\unicode[STIX]{x1D6FD}_{\mathit{particle}}$ ) and suspension ( $\unicode[STIX]{x1D6FD}_{\mathit{suspension}}$ ). The flow split for the bulk suspension satisfies $\unicode[STIX]{x1D6FD}>0.5$ for $\unicode[STIX]{x1D719}_{0}<0.16$ while $\unicode[STIX]{x1D719}_{0}=0.16$ crosses from $\unicode[STIX]{x1D6FD}\approx 0.5$ to $\unicode[STIX]{x1D6FD}>0.5$ at $Re\approx 100$ . For $\unicode[STIX]{x1D719}_{0}\geqslant 0.2$ , $\unicode[STIX]{x1D6FD}<0.5$ at all $Re$ studied. A complex dependence of the mean solid fraction in the downstream branches upon inlet fraction $\unicode[STIX]{x1D719}_{0}$ and $Re$ is observed: for $\unicode[STIX]{x1D719}_{0}<0.1$ , the solid fraction in the straight downstream branch initially decreases with $Re$ , before increasing to surpass the inlet fraction at large $Re$ ( $Re\approx 500$ for $\unicode[STIX]{x1D719}_{0}=0.05$ ). At $\unicode[STIX]{x1D719}_{0}>0.1$ , the solid fraction in the straight branch satisfies $\unicode[STIX]{x1D719}_{\Vert }/\unicode[STIX]{x1D719}_{0}>1$ , and this ratio grows with $Re$ . Discrete-particle simulations employing immersed boundary and lattice-Boltzmann techniques are used to analyse these phenomena, allowing rationalization of aspects of this complex behaviour as being due to particle migration in the inlet branch.

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JFM Papers
Copyright
© 2018 Cambridge University Press 

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Manoorkar et al. supplementary movie 1

Experiment at Φ0 = 0.05, d/D = 0.2, Re = 200. Video is 100 times slower than real time.

Video 6 MB

Manoorkar et al. supplementary movie 2

Immersed boundary simulation at Φ0 = 0.05, d/D = 0.2, Re = 200."The video shows the entry and bifurcation regions separately as well as the full channel view as the particles enter and reach a steady state flow.

Video 33 MB

Manoorkar et al. supplementary movie 3

Comparison of experiment and immersed boundary simulation in bifurcation region at Φ0 = 0.05, d/D = 0.2, Re = 300 for IB and Re = 311 for experiments.

Video 9 MB

Manoorkar et al. supplementary movie 4

Experiment at Φ0 = 0.05, d/D = 0.2, Re = 415. Video is 100 times slower than real time.

Video 6 MB

Manoorkar et al. supplementary movie 5

Comparison of experiment and immersed boundary simulation in bifurcation region at Φ0 = 0.05, d/D = 0.2, Re = 600 for IB and Re = 620 for experiments.

Video 6 MB

Manoorkar et al. supplementary movie 6

Experiment at Φ0 = 0.05, d/D = 0.2, Re = 830. Video is 100 times slower than real time.

Video 10 MB

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