Fluidization is widely used in industries and has been extensively studied, both experimentally and theoretically, in the past. However, most of these studies focus on spherical particles while in practice granules are rarely spherical. Particle shape can have a significant effect on fluidization characteristics. It is therefore important to study the effect of particle shape on fluidization behavior in detail. In this study, experiments in pseudo-2D fluidized beds are used to characterize the fluidization of spherocylindrical (rod-like) Geldart D particles of aspect ratio 4. Pressure drop and optical measurement methods (Digital Image Analysis, Particle Image Velocimetry, Particle Tracking Velocimetry) are employed to measure bed height, particle orientation, particle circulation, stacking, and coordination number. The commonly used correlations to determine the pressure drop across a bed of nonspherical particles are compared to experiments. Experimental observations and measurements have shown that rod-like particles are prone to interlocking and channeling behavior. Well above the minimum fluidization velocity, vigorous bubbling fluidization is observed, with groups of interlocked particles moving upwards, breaking up, being thrown high in the freeboard region and slowly raining down as dispersed phase. At high flowrates, a circulation pattern develops with particles moving up through the center and down at the walls. Particles tend to orient themselves along the flow direction.
- bed height
- Digital Image Analysis
- Particle Image Velocimetry
- Particle Tracking Velocimetry
- pressure drop