Dynamics of gas-liquid flow in a rectangular bubble column: Experiments and single/multi-group CFD simulations

Vivek V. Buwa, Vivek V. Ranade*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

232 Citations (Scopus)


Several flow processes influence overall dynamics of gas-liquid flow and hence mixing and transport processes in bubble columns. In the present work, we have experimentally as well as computationally studied the effect of gas velocity, sparger design and coalescence suppressing additives on dynamics of gas-liquid flow in a rectangular bubble column. Wall pressure fluctuations were measured to characterize the low frequency oscillations of the meandering bubble plume. Bubble size distribution measurements were carried out using high-speed digital camera. Dispersed gas-liquid flow in bubble column was modelled using Eulerian-Eulerian approach. Bubble population was represented in the model with a single group or multiple groups. Bubble coalescence and break-up processes were included in the multi-group simulations via a suitable population balance framework. Effect of superficial gas velocity and sparger configurations was studied using single-group simulations. Model predictions were verified by comparison with the experimental data. Role of bubble size in determining plume oscillation period was studied. Multi-group simulations were carried out to examine evolution of bubble size distribution. An attempt is made to understand the relationship between local and global (over all the dispersion volume) bubble size distribution. The models and results reported here would be useful to develop and to extend the applications of multi-group CFD models.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4715-4736
Number of pages22
JournalChemical Engineering Science
Issue number22-23
Publication statusPublished - 11 Nov 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Bubble columns
  • CFD
  • Coalescence/break-up
  • Dynamics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemical Engineering(all)

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