Collect. Czech. Chem. Commun. 1985, 50, 745-757

The effect of two-phase flow regime on hydrodynamics and mass transfer in a horizontal-tube gas-liquid reactor

Andreas Zahna, Lothar Ebnera, Kurt Winklera, Jan Kratochvílb and Jindřich Zahradníkb

a Central Institute of Physical Chemistry, Academy of Sciences GDR, Berlin-Adlershof, GDR
b Institute of Chemical Process Fundamentals, Czechoslovak Academy of Sciences, 165 02 Prague 6-Suchdol, Czechoslovakia


The effect of two-phase flow regime on decisive hydrodynamic and mass transfer characteristics of horizontal-tube gas-liquid reactors (pressure drop, liquid holdup, kLaL) was determined in a cocurrent-flow experimental unit of the length 4.15 m and diameter 0.05 m with air-water system. An adjustable-height weir was installed in the separation chamber at the reactor outlet to simulate the effect of internal baffles on reactor hydrodynamics. Flow regime maps were developed in the whole range of experimental gas and liquid flow rates both for the weirless arrangement and for the weir height 0.05 m, the former being in good agreement with flow-pattern boundaries presented by Mandhane. In the whole range of experi-mental conditions pressure drop data could be well correlated as a function of gas and liquid flow rates by an empirical exponential-type relation with specific sets of coefficients obtained for individual flow regimes from experimental data. Good agreement was observed between values of pressure drop obtained for weirless arrangement and data calculated from the Lockhart-Martinelli correlation while the contribution of weir to the overall pressure drop was well described by a relation proposed for the pressure loss in closed-end tubes. In the region of negligible weir influence values of liquid holdup were again succesfully correlated by the Lockhart-Martinelli relation while the dependence of liquid holdup data on gas and liquid flow rates obtained under conditions of significant weir effect (i.e. at low flow rates of both phases) could be well described by an empirical exponential-type relation. Results of preliminary kLaL measurements confirmed the decisive effect of the rate of energy dissipation on the intensity of interfacial mass transfer in gas-liquid dispersions.