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Flow field in a downward diverging channel and its application

Marek Večeř and Kamil Wichterle

Department of Chemistry



Abstract: The flow in a downward divergent channel turns out to be an interesting experimental setup for the observation of upward floating bubbles that appear to be levitating in view of the observer. A more detailed analysis of this flow and its characteristic parameters is necessary for better understanding of this phenomenon. The boundary layer theory was used to derive the velocity field for the experimental setup. The actual flow of a liquid in the presence of a bubble was studied experimentally by measuring the position of the bubble; the data were then statistically processed by an image analysis. Observation of the bubble positions distribution showed that it is reasonable to assume a flat velocity profile of the liquid in the channel and that the bubbles do not tend to move into the boundary layer. In our experiments, volume of the air bubbles floating in water was 200 mm3 and of that of bubbles floating in aqueous glycerin was 300 mm3. Thus, the experiment used in this work is suitable for reliable determination of instantaneous and average bubble rising velocities as well as of those of horizontal and vertical oscillations.

Keywords: multiphase flows – fluid mechanics – flow field – boundary layer – bubble – bubble velocity – viscosity

Full paper is available at

DOI: 10.1515/chempap-2016-0044


Chemical Papers 70 (8) 1106–1116 (2016)

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