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AN INVESTIGATION OF A TURBULENT BACKWARD FACING STEP FLOW WITH THE ADDITION OF A CHARGED PARTICLE PHASE

Stephen Hall
School of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering, The University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia 2052

Graham Lindsay Morrison
School of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering, The University of New South Wales, Sydney 2052, Australia

Masud Behnia
School of Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering, University of New South Wales, Sydney 2052, Australia

Abstract

This paper presents results of an investigation into the interactions between a turbulent air flow and a particle phase, with the addition of electrostatic forces. The air flow was a turbulent Backward Facing Step (BFS), into which small solid, spherical, monodisperse particles were seeded to create a diffuse, one-way coupled air-particle flow. Electrostatic forces were introduced by charging particles in a corona precharger and creating electric fields around the BFS.
The primary experimental technique adapted for this study was digital Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV). This allowed the BFS air flow and particle velocities to be measured at high resolution, which revealed the BFS flow structures in considerable detail. A two-phase wind tunnel, seeding apparatus, corona particle precharger and wire-plate electrode geometry were developed.
The turbulent BFS air flow was accurately revealed through the complementary use of PIV and CFD. The two results were in excellent agreement and comparisons allowed the limitations of each to be identified. The electrostatic investigation highlighted the dramatic effects of electric fields on charged particles in a turbulent flow. Charged particle velocities were revealed globally by PIV and the influence of the electric field on the two phase BFS flow was quantified. Electrostatic forces dominated particle motion and created a unique BFS flow structure.

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