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Full Technical Laboratory Report: Fluidized Beds

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The work is professional and ethical.
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d.
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Full Technical Laboratory Report: Fluidized Beds


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Full Technical Laboratory Report: Fluidized Beds


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printed 2/28/2014

214104418.doc

Kevin Miranda
B1
2/19/2013

Pre-Reflection
Experiment #_4_: Fluidized Beds
Full technical laboratory report
This will be the second full technical lab report that I complete for this class. At this
point, I have a clear understanding of what requirements I need to fulfill for this assignment and I
know the areas in which I need improvement in. For this lab report, I am going to be more
detailed on my results and give a clearer presentation about what the experiment is on. I also plan
to spend more time on elaborating on what my results mean so that I can write an coherent
conclusion at the end of my lab report. My goals for this assignment are to improve my writing
and research skills and to become a more confident technical writer. I will not only be working to
complete my goals but the goals of the instructor as well. The teacher expects that I gain a higher
knowledge of how to become a better technical writer and learning to become a more confident
writer is also the professors goal as well. Writing technical lab reports will be an important part
of my career, and it is important that I start to gain a clear understanding of how to communicate
technical information to others. Whether it is the industrial field or the research field that I
choose in the near future, being able to communicate information in a clear and organized
manner is one of the keys to becoming a successful engineer. It is important that while I am
school I have someone critique my work and help me improve on my writing skills to ensure that
I become an acceptable engineer for when I graduate.

214104418.doc

Fluidized Beds
A Laboratory Report Submitted by:
Kevin Miranda
in partial fulfillment of the requirements of
CHE 352
Spring Semester, 2013
Arizona State University
Chemical Engineering Program

Abstract
This experiment dealt with the analysis of two fluidized beds both containing 25/45 mesh
glass spheres. Each fluidized bed contained a different mass of the packing material and each bed
was held within different sizes of PVC schedule 40 pipes. Measurements of the pressure
differentials and height differences across the bed were taken in order to compare with the
predictions used to obtain information on the hydrodynamic conditions of the bed. We
hypothesized that the predictions of pressure drop would have an error of less than 10% when
compared to with the experimental values. Though when values were compared, the relative true
error percent was greater than expected for both of the fluidized beds. Possible systematic errors
were discussed that could have caused the predicted values to be very different than the
experimental values.

Fluidized Beds

Kevin Miranda
B1
2/19/2013

Table of Contents
Page
Abstract............................................................................................................................................i
Introduction/background/theory .....................................................................................................1
Materials and apparatus/procedure..................................................................................................3
Results .............................................................................................................................................4
Discussion/Conclusion.....................................................................................................................9
References......................................................................................................................................10
Appendix A: (Results from experimental analysis on Fluidized Bed #1).....................................11
Appendix B: (Results from experimental analysis on Fluidized Bed #2).....................................12
List of Figures
Page
Figure 1 (Overview of Fluidized Bed).............................................................................................1
Figure 2 (Plot for pressure drop versus superficial velocity for Fluidized Bed #1)........................4
Figure 3 (Plot for pressure drop versus superficial velocity for Fluidized Bed #2)........................5
Figure 4 (Plot for change in bed height versus the superficial velocity for Fluidized Bed #1).......6
Figure 5 (Plot for change in bed height versus the superficial velocity for Fluidized Bed #2).......7
List of Tables
Page
Table 1 (Error % in Pressure values for Fluidized Bed #1).............................................................8
Table 2 (Error % in Pressure values for Fluidized Bed #2).............................................................8
Table 3 (Recorded measurements for Fluidized Bed #1)..............................................................11
Table 4 (Recorded measurements for Fluidized Bed #2)..............................................................12

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ii

Fluidized Beds

Kevin Miranda
B1
2/19/2013

List of Terms
Density of bed (kg/m3)....................................................................................................................p
Density of air (kg/m3).....................................................................................................................g
Superficial Velocity (m/s)..............................................................................................................U
Flow Rate (m3/s).............................................................................................................................Q
Cross sectional area (m2)................................................................................................................Ac
Mass of bed (kg)............................................................................................................................mp
Volume of bed (m3)........................................................................................................................Vp
Differential Pressure (kPa)...........................................................................................................P
Pressure (kPa).................................................................................................................................P
Void Fraction (-)..............................................................................................................................
Height of bed (m)...........................................................................................................................H
Gravity (m2/s)..................................................................................................................................g

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iii

Fluidized Beds

Kevin Miranda
B1
2/19/2013

Introduction
Fluidized bed technologies are commonly used for many sorts of industrial processes
such as for reactions, drying, coatings, and combustion. 6 Fluidized beds are primarily used for
the reason that they are efficient for promoting the mixing between solid particles and a liquid or
gas.2 Areas such as petroleum refining and coal gasification and liquefaction heavily depend on
the use of gas-fluidized beds.4 Despite the widely employed use of fluidized beds, there is not a
lot of understanding behind their complex dynamics. 5 In this experiment, we dealt with gas
fluidized beds of two different sizes with a stationary bed consisting of mesh glass spheres.
Pressurized air was blown through the bottom of the column and the contact of the air with the
glass spheres made the glass beads behave like a fluid. 1 This fluid-like property that is observed
is seen because the gas particles will reach a velocity that exerts a drag force greater than the
weight of the solid particles causing the solid to be suspended due to the balance of forces. 5 The
objective of this study was to study the characteristics of fluidized beds and to compare the
experimental results to the results obtained by using predictions. The experimental and the
predicted values for each pressure drop would be compared by doing relative true error percent.
By analyzing the error percent between the experimental and predicted values, we could
determine how precise the formulas for
predicting fluidized bed behavior were.
The relationship between the pressure
drop across the bed and the superficial
velocity of the air flow was also
determined by creating a plot for both
of our fluidized beds. The superficial
velocity of our air would be
determined by using equation (1). We
also made a plot for the expansion of
the bed height versus the flow rate of
air. As the air flow rate increases,
expansion of the bed will occur
causing there to be a change of height
from the beds initial resting position.
Figure

1:

Overview

of

Fluidized Bed

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p. 1

Fluidized Beds

Kevin Miranda
B1
2/19/2013

U = Q / Ac

Equation (1)

Using the density of air at room temperature and equation (2) to determine the density of
the bed, the predicted value for pressure drop could be determined by using equation (3). The
answer in equation (3) would have to be divided by 1000 in order to be in units of kilopascals in
order to compare to our measured pressure drops. Height of our packed bed would be
represented by H and would be the max height that the bed has reached at a certain air flow rate.
p = mp / Vp

Equation (2)

P = H (p - g) (1- ) g

Equation (3)

Our hypothesis was that the predicted values for both of the fluidized beds would be
within the range of a relative true error of 10%.

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p. 2

Fluidized Beds

Kevin Miranda
B1
2/19/2013

Materials and Apparatus


The following materials and apparatus were used for this experiment:
Rotameters
DPI 705 digital pressure indicator
Pressure gauge
Meter stick
Measuring tape
Fluidized bed with 150 grams of 25/45 mesh glass spheres (fluidized bed contained
within a PVC schedule 40 pipe with inside diameter of 1.049 inches)
Fluidized bed with 2500 grams of 25/45 mesh glass spheres (fluidized bed contained
within a PVC schedule 40 pipe with inside diameter of 3.068 inches)

Procedure
1. Measurements of the pipe circumference, packed bed height, and length of the void
space were first taken using measuring tape for Fluidized bed #1(the fluidized bed
with 150 grams of 25/45 mesh glass spheres).
2. The pressure of the air that would be released into fluidized bed #1 was then set to 9
PSIG.
3. The rotameter was then used to adjust the incoming flow rate of air. Flow rate of air
was gradually increased for each measurement.
4. For each set flow rate, the digital pressure indicator was used to measure the top and
bottom pressures across the length of the packed bed. For each flow rate, the change
of height for the bed was also measured using the meter stick.
5. After measurements on about five or six flow rates were made, analysis of the
measurements then took place to make sure pressure drops were consistent and that
no systematic error had occurred.
6. Steps 1-6 were then repeated for Fluidized bed #2 (the fluidized bed with 2500 grams
of 25/45 mesh glass spheres), except this time the pressure in step 2 was set to 13
PSIG.

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Fluidized Beds

Kevin Miranda
B1
2/19/2013

Results

Figure 2: Plot for pressure drop versus superficial velocity for fluidized bed #1

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p. 4

Fluidized Beds

Kevin Miranda
B1
2/19/2013

Figure 3: Plot for pressure drop versus superficial velocity for fluidized bed #2

Both figures 2 and 3 illustrate that as the superficial velocity was increased, the value in pressure
drop along the packed bed increased as well. The plot for fluidized bed #2 showed a more linear
character than the plot for fluidized bed #1.

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Fluidized Beds

Kevin Miranda
B1
2/19/2013

Figure 4: Plot for change in bed height versus the superficial velocity for fluidized bed #1

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p. 6

Fluidized Beds

Kevin Miranda
B1
2/19/2013

Figure 5: Plot for change in bed height versus the superficial velocity for fluidized bed #2

Both figures 4 and 5 illustrate that as the superficial velocity was increased, the change in bed
height also increased. For fluidized bed #1, the initial height of the bed without any air
flow, as shown in figure 1, was 0.19 meters. For fluidized bed #2, the initial height of
the bed was 0.33 meters.

Table 1: Error % in Pressure values for Fluidized


Bed #1
Predicted
Pressure Drop Pressure Drop Realtive True
(kPa)
(kPa)
error (%)
8.33
2.595370362
69%
9.38
2.894836173
69%
10.1
2.99465811
70%
11.27
3.393945858
70%
12.22
3.793233606
69%
13.37
4.491987165
66%

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Fluidized Beds

Kevin Miranda
B1
2/19/2013

The predicted values for pressure drop in fluidized bed with 150 grams of 25/45 mesh glass
spheres in the PVC schedule 40 pipe with ID of 1.049 inches turned out to be far off
from the actual pressure values. Equation (3) was used to determine the predicted
pressure values. Observing table 1, it is noticeable to see that all the predicted values
were much smaller than the actual values.
Table 2: Error % in Pressure values for
Fluidized Bed #2
Predicted
Pressure Drop
Pressure
Relative True
(kPa)
Drop (kPa)
error (%)
2.57
5.5662484
54%
3.14
7.5023348
58%
3.66
8.7123888
58%
4.35
10.4064644
58%
5.11
11.1324968
54%

The predicted values for pressure drop in fluidized bed with 2500 grams of 25/45 mesh glass
spheres in the PVC schedule 40 pipe with ID of 3.068 inches turned out to be far off from the
actual pressure values. Equation (3) was used to determine the predicted pressure values.
Observing table 2, it is noticeable to see that all the predicted values were much larger than the
actual values.

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Fluidized Beds

Kevin Miranda
B1
2/19/2013

Discussion/Conclusion
Our hypothesis that the predicted values would have a relative error of around 10% to the
actual values was incorrect. Tables 1 and 2 showed that the relative error was much higher than
expected. The error was greater for the smaller fluidized bed with the 150 grams of 25/45 mesh
glass spheres and the ID of 1.049 inches. Fluidized bed #1 showed an average relative error of
about 69% while fluidized bed #2 showed an average relative error of about 56%. A reason as to
why the predicted values could have been very different from the experimental values could have
been due to imperfect methods of observation. We did not do any more than a single
measurement of pressure and height for each flow rate. Had we done replicates of our pressure
drops and height measurements for every flow rate, then perhaps we could have made up for the
systematic errors by averaging the recorded values. If the digital pressure indicator was
improperly used, then the experimental values could have been false which could also be why
both the experimental and predicted values are far off from each other. It is uncertain as to why
the analysis for the predicted pressure drop was not close to or within the hypothesized range of
the experimental values.
Overall, certain characteristics about fluidized beds were determined. Figures 2 and 3
demonstrated that the pressure drop would increase as the superficial velocity increased. Figures
4 and 5 illustrated that the height of the bed became greater with an increase in the flow rate. As
the flow rate had increased, it was observed that the bed consisting of solid particles started to
demonstrate liquid-like qualities. As the flow rate was increased to greater values, the bed would
become more like a liquid.
Concepts underlying fluidization are more complicated than one would expect. Currently,
many are still researching methods to explain how fluidized beds work and to come up with
formulas that can better predict experimental results. Fluidized beds results in large scale mixing
which is the reason why fluidized beds are widely used today by many companies for large scale
production.3

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Fluidized Beds

Kevin Miranda
B1
2/19/2013

References

[1]
AnonymousFluidized beds : Thomson 6. W., Ryan D. W., Dunkin L. J. et al. (1980)
Fluidized bed in the intensive therapy unit. Lancet1, 568. Injury 1980, 12, 262.
[2]
Croxford, A. J.; Gilbertson, M. A. Pressure fluctuations in bubbling gas-fluidized
beds. Chemical Engineering Science 2011, 66, 3569-3578.
[3]
D. Pallares, F. Johnsson. Macroscopic Modeling of uid dynamics in large-scale
circulating uidized beds. Prog. Energy Combust. Sci. 32 (2006) 539569.
[4]

Garg, S. Dynamics of gas-fluidized beds. J. Appl. Phys. 1975, 46, 4493.

[5]

Geldart, D. Expansion of Gas Fluidized Beds. Ind Eng Chem Res 2004, 43, 5802-5809.

[6]
Rodrguez-Rojo, S.; Cocero, M. J. Supercritical fluidized bed modeling. The Journal of
Supercritical Fluids 2009, 50, 54-60.

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Appendix A: Results from experimental analysis on Fluidized Bed #1

Table 3: Recorded measurements for Fluidized Bed #1


Air flow
Bottom Pressure
Top Pressure Pressure Drop
(kPa)
(kPa)
(kPa)
(m3/s)
Height (m)
9.3
0.97
8.33
2.20E-04
0.26
10.58
1.2
9.38
2.67E-04
0.29
11.2
1.1
10.1
2.83E-04
0.3
12.52
1.25
11.27
3.15E-04
0.34
13.88
1.66
12.22
3.46E-04
0.38
15.2
1.83
13.37
3.78E-04
0.45

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U = Q/A
(m/s)
3.96E-03
4.80E-03
5.08E-03
5.65E-03
6.21E-03
6.79E-03

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2/19/2013

Appendix B: Results from experimental analysis on Fluidized Bed #2

Bottom Pressure
(kPa)
7.12
9.47
10.87
13.77
16.37

Table 4: Recorded measurements for Fluidized Bed #2


Air flow
Top Pressure Pressure Drop
(kPa)
(kPa)
(m3/ s)
Height (m)
4.55
2.57
0.00235
0.46
6.33
3.14
0.0033
0.62
7.21
3.66
0.004
0.72
9.42
4.35
0.00472
0.86
11.26
5.11
0.00543
0.92

214104418.doc

U = Q/A
(m/ s)
0.00492662
0.00691824
0.00838574
0.00989518
0.01138365

p. 12

Kevin Miranda
B1
2/19/2013

Post-Reflection
Experiment #_4_: Fluidized Beds
Full technical laboratory report
After completing this lab report, I feel that I have improved on my skills as a technical
writer. I felt that this technical lab report was much easier to do than the first one I had been
assigned. When I had done this experiment, I came into the lab knowing what I needed to
measure, what the goal of the experiment was, and what I needed to be analyzing. I felt that
being more prepared made a huge impact for when I had to write the lab report. I was
immediately able to create the introduction and talk about what the goals and objective of the
experiment were without having to keep relooking over the experimental data that my team and I
had gathered during the lab. I wish I had known how much easier being prepared for the lab
helped with writing the technical reports. I felt that I made good use of my strengths by using my
research and writing skills to create a professional looking technical report. I used the ASU
library website in order to find the information I needed to make a strong and clear introduction
and found the formulas I needed to use to calculate my predictions. I did not only learn about
writing a technical lab report but I learned a lot of information about fluidized beds while
conducting my research for this report. Learning about different pieces of equipment is important
because the apparatuses we are dealing with in this lab course are all pieces of equipment that we
will most likely see when we go into research or the industrial field. Its important that we start to
gain a conception of how these machines work and to start becoming familiar with equipment
that we may one day be hired to use and operate. Overall, I completed this lab report with a
better understanding of technical writing and built a stronger interest in learning about other
machinery or equipment that I soon may be dealing with as a field engineer.

214104418.doc

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