Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

From blood to paper: Fundamental knowledge in the field of particle flows

Date:
March 21, 2014
Source:
TU Graz
Summary:
From blood vessels to large industrial plants, T-shaped junctions play an important role in both nature and technical applications as a universal geometric unity and can be found, for instance, in our blood vessels. Researchers observed for the first time that particles are “trapped” and accumulate in T junctions under certain conditions.

From blood vessels to large industrial plants, T-shaped junctions play an important role in both nature and technical applications as a universal geometric unity and can be found, for instance, in our blood vessels. Stefan Radl of the Institute for Process and Particle Engineering at Graz University of Technology together with "fluid-mechanics luminary" Howard Stone of the University of Princeton and Daniele Vigolo of ETH Zurich observed for the first time that particles are "trapped" and accumulate in T junctions under certain conditions. "As so often in research, the observation occurred by accident -- we were actually focusing on a different aspect of particle flow," explains Stefan Radl. Then, using simulations and experiments, the three researchers investigated when and why the particles remain at the T junction. "Three factors play a role: the flow rate, particle density and particle size. We were able to derive limits theoretically for all three parameters and back them up with experimental data," continued Radl.

Allowing particles through or "trapping" them

The observed phenomenon is regarded as a fundamental piece of the puzzle in classical fluid mechanics and was published by the journal PNAS in the current issue. By means of the described three parameters responsible for allowing particles through or trapping them, accumulations of particles could be deliberately prevented in the future. To give a practical example in medicine: gas embolism. "If a diver comes up to the surface too quickly, gas bubbles can accumulate in the branches of the blood vessels, clog them up and lead to the diver's death. Gas bubbles also behave like particles and through our observations, we can better understand the formation of the gas embolism and how to avoid it," explains Stefan Radl. But not only that: "In other cases, it can be desirable to hold back specific particles and to separate them from the fluid, for instance in the paper industry, " continues Radl. In the framework of the Austrian Research Promotion (FFG) project "FLIPPR -- Future Lignin and Pulp Processing Research," researchers from the Institute of Paper, Pulp and Fibre Technology and from the Institute for Process and Particle Engineering at Graz University of Technology together with colleagues from the University of Graz and the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences (BOKU) are researching the possibilities of targeted particle separation. Well-known partners in the paper industry are also supporting FLIPPR and are hoping for an early implementation of Stefan Radl's research findings.

The next steps

Up to now, the researchers have carried out the experiments of particle flows in T junctions on a small scale, where Earth's gravity is negligible. "Now we have to raise the investigations to the next level and repeat them at a larger scale. In the future, we want to investigate whether other parameters influence particle flow behaviour in industrial plants," says Stefan Radl, with an eye on the future.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by TU Graz. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. D. Vigolo, S. Radl, H. A. Stone. Unexpected trapping of particles at a T junction. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 2014; DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1321585111

Cite This Page:

TU Graz. "From blood to paper: Fundamental knowledge in the field of particle flows." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 21 March 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140321095012.htm>.
TU Graz. (2014, March 21). From blood to paper: Fundamental knowledge in the field of particle flows. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140321095012.htm
TU Graz. "From blood to paper: Fundamental knowledge in the field of particle flows." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140321095012.htm (accessed October 23, 2014).

Share This



More Matter & Energy News

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

3D Printed Instruments Make Sweet Music in Sweden

3D Printed Instruments Make Sweet Music in Sweden

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Oct. 23, 2014) Students from Lund University's Malmo Academy of Music are believed to be the world's first band to all use 3D printed instruments. The guitar, bass guitar, keyboard and drums were built by Olaf Diegel, professor of product development, who says 3D printing allows musicians to design an instrument to their exact specifications. Matthew Stock reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Chameleon Camouflage to Give Tanks Cloaking Capabilities

Chameleon Camouflage to Give Tanks Cloaking Capabilities

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Oct. 22, 2014) Inspired by the way a chameleon changes its colour to disguise itself; scientists in Poland want to replace traditional camouflage paint with thousands of electrochromic plates that will continuously change colour to blend with its surroundings. The first PL-01 concept tank prototype will be tested within a few years, with scientists predicting that a similar technology could even be woven into the fabric of a soldiers' clothing making them virtually invisible to the naked eye. Matthew Stock reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Jet Sales Lift Boeing Profit 18 Pct.

Jet Sales Lift Boeing Profit 18 Pct.

Reuters - Business Video Online (Oct. 22, 2014) Strong jet demand has pushed Boeing to raise its profit forecast for the third time, but analysts were disappointed by its small cash flow. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Internet of Things Aims to Smarten Your Life

Internet of Things Aims to Smarten Your Life

AP (Oct. 22, 2014) As more and more Bluetooth-enabled devices are reaching consumers, developers are busy connecting them together as part of the Internet of Things. (Oct. 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins