Campus Units

Chemical and Biological Engineering

Document Type


Research Focus Area

Computational Fluid Dynamics

Publication Version

Published Version

Publication Date


Journal or Book Title

Physical Review Fluids





First Page





This work reports an experimental investigation of a liquid-solid fluidized bed involving inertial particles at a large Reynolds number. Owing to optical techniques and index matching, the statistics of the velocity fluctuations of both the particles and the liquid are measured for a wide range of the particle volume fraction αp. The dynamics of the fluctuations suggests that the flow possesses the following three properties: (1) The liquid volume involves a wake region in which vertical fluctuations are negative and an interstitial region where they are positive. (2) The statistics of the horizontal fluctuations are similar to vertical ones, except that they are symmetric. (3) Local instant particle fluctuations are proportional to liquid ones. Assuming these properties are true allows us to derive a model for the probability density functions (PDFs) of the two components of the velocity fluctuations of the two phases. This model involves a single reference PDF that is independent of αp and one weighting parameter for each phase. The weighting parameter of the liquid phase is an affine function of αp, which characterizes the volume of the wakes relative to that of the interstices. That of the particle phase depends on the preferential concentration of the particles, which tend to avoid the wakes at low αp. This model accurately describes the experimental PDFs up to the third-order moment and reproduces all their peculiar features: the skewness of the vertical fluctuations which reverses at a given volume fraction, the presence of exponential tails corresponding to rare intense events, and the symmetry between low and large volume fractions.


This article is published as Alméras, Elise, Frédéric Risso, Olivier Masbernat, and Rodney O. Fox. "Statistics of velocity fluctuations in a homogeneous liquid fluidized bed." Physical Review Fluids 6, no. 3 (2021): 034301. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevFluids.6.034301. Posted with permission.

Copyright Owner

American Physical Society



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