Air Bubble Size and Its Transition in a Horizontal Tube Produced by Venturi-Nozzle Bubble Generator

Document Type : Regular Article


1 Department of Mechanical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Universiti Malaya, 50603, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

2 Centre for Energy Sciences & Centre for Research in Biotechnology for Agriculture (CEBAR), Universiti Malaya, 50603 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

3 Department of Biomedical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Universiti Malaya, 50603, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

4 Department of Mechanical Engineering, Teesside University Middlesbrough, Middlesbrough TS1 3BX, UK



This paper investigates the air bubble size and its transition in a horizontal tube of 700 mm. The tube was assembled with a venturi-nozzle bubble generator. Air and water flow-rates vary in the present study. The data collection mainly used high-speed camera to capture the bubbles at different distances along the horizontal tube at water flow-rates (Qw) of 120-170 litre per min (LPM) and air flow-rates (Qa) of 2-10 LPM. MATLAB was used in image processing for evaluating the bubble size. The data interpretation used YW dimensionless parameter in representing the height of the bubbles’ vertical rise in the horizontal tube. The bubble size along the horizontal tube was characterized by the Weber number as well. The type of two-phase (water-air bubbles) flow along the horizontal tube from the venturi-nozzle bubble generator was determined using flow pattern map and Lockhart-Martinelli parameter. The bubble generator produced bubbles in the range of 0.8-3.1 mm at the inlet of horizontal tube. The bubble diameters increased as the bubbles moved horizontally from inlet to outlet of the horizontal tube and this finding was statistically significant. The vertical rise height of bubbles along the horizontal tube at different water and air flow-rates had been quantified and compared. The vertical rise height of bubbles increased axially from 41 % to 89 % from inlet to outlet of the horizontal tube. The bubbles’ vertical rise height increased when either the air flow-rate or water flow-rate is reduced. The mean Weber number increased along the horizontal tube due to an increase in bubble size. The decrease in water flow-rate caused a decrease in the mean Weber number. The Lockhart-Martinelli parameter of the water-air bubbles flow in the horizontal tube was within 0.58-2.94, indicating that it was a multiphase flow. The findings from this study give fundamental insight into bubble dynamics behaviour in its horizontal transition. This study focuses on the size and transition of air bubbles produced by venturi-nozzle bubble generator along a horizontal tube at different water and air flow-rates, unlike previous studies which only investigate the air bubbles inside or near bubble generator. These findings are very useful for practical industrial applications because the exact air bubble size before being used is known.


Main Subjects

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