Investigation of the Effect of Fluids Superficial Velocity on Initiation and Development of Slug Flow in a Horizontal Hydraulics Pipe
Keywords:superficial velocity, slug flow, initiation, fully developed, characteristic, horizontal hydraulics pipe
The aim of this study is to investigate the effect of fluids superficial velocity on the characteristics of two-phase slug flow in a horizontal hydraulics pipe covering slug flow initiation and development. Air and water were employed as the working fluids. Slug flow characteristics were visually observed at 25D and 200D in a 19 mm internal diameter of acrylic pipe for the initiation and fully developed slug flow conditions, respectively. Flow visualization was taken using high speed video cameras at 400 fps and then analyzed using image processing method. Based on the flow pattern characteristics, several slug flow initiation mechanisms were obtained. Under the investigated conditions, at low to medium air superficial velocity (JG) with low to high water superficial velocity (JL), slug flow initiation mechanisms consisted of wave growth, hydraulic jump, blockage, and slug decaying. While wave initiation, wave formation, disturbance, wave coalescence, and incompletely developed slug mechanisms were observed at medium to high JG with low to high JL. After slug flow was fully developed, it was found that the higher the water superficial velocity resulted in lower void fraction and higher slug frequency. In the meantime, pressure drop and liquid slug velocity increased considerably with the increase of both JG and JL. Maximum pressure drop of 8.35 kPa/m occurred at JL of 2.00 m/s and JG of 3.76 m/s. The highest slug frequency of 6.67 1/s was observed at JL of 2.00 m/s and JG of 2.12 m/s. This information is important for designing fluid flow in horizontal hydraulics pipes and for consideration in predicting the development of the slug flow in order to avoid the negative impact of slug flow in industrial applications.