Transient peristaltic transport of grains in a liquid
1 Department of Chemical and Process Engineering Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences, University of Surrey, Guildford GU2 7XH, UK.
2 Nestlé Research Centre, Route du Jorat 57, 1000 Lausanne 26, Switzerland.
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Published online: 30 June 2017
Pumping suspensions and pastes has always been a significant technological challenge in a number of industrial applications ranging from food processing to mining. Peristaltic pumps have become popular to pump and/or dose complex fluids, due to their robustness. During the transport of suspensions with peristaltic pumps, clogging issues may arise, particularly during transient operations. That is a matter of particular concern whenever the pumping device is used intermittently to generate flow only on demand. Further understanding of the transient dynamics of such systems and of the conditions that can lead to jamming would result in more robust peristaltic pump design. To achieve these goals, an experimental setup that simplifies the statorrotor assembly of a peristaltic hose pump was used. In this setup, a roller transfers momentum to a liquid suspension, upon application of a constant load. The evolution of the velocity of the roller was recorded for different concentrations of mono-dispersed spheres of different diameters. The flow is found not to be strongly dependent on the dispersed particle volume fraction, if the size of the suspended phase is comparable with the hose diameter. Conversely, the flow is strongly slowed down when their size is small and the particle concentration is increased. These findings could help improving the design of peristaltic pumps by a more appropriate sizing, given the diameter of the hose and that of the particles to be transported.
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2017
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