Direct numerical simulation of a bubble suspension in small amplitude oscillatory shear flow

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Bubble suspensions can be found in many different fields and studying their rheology is crucial in order to improve manufacturing processes. When bubbles are added to a liquid, the magnitude of the viscosity changes and the behavior of the material is modified, giving it viscoelastic properties. For the purpose of this work the suspended bubbles are considered to be monodisperse. It is assumed that Brownian motion and inertia can be neglected and that the fluid of the matrix is Newtonian and incompressible. The suspension is subject to an oscillatory strain while remaining in the linear regime. The resulting equations are solved in 3D with direct numerical simulation using a finite element discretization. Results of an ordered and random distribution of bubbles of volume fractions up to 40% are presented. The presence of bubbles has an opposite effect on the rheology of the suspension depending on the applied frequency. When the frequency is low, bubbles act as rigid fillers giving a rise to viscosity. On the contrary, when the frequency is high the strain rate is being accommodated by the gaseous phase. Hence, bubbles deform, leading to a decrease of the viscosity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)555-565
Number of pages11
JournalRheologica Acta
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2017


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