Dynamic generation of aqueous foams and fiber foams in a mixing tank

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Abstract

Mixing tanks are employed in paper and pulp industries to generate aqueous foams and fiber foams. The aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of impeller geometry on dynamic foam generation in a 60 L mixing tank. Three impeller geometries including two radial—Rushton turbine (RT), Bakker turbine (BT6), one axial high solidity pitched blade turbine (HSPBT), and four dual impeller combinations were investigated. Compressed air, water and sodium dodecyl sulphate were used as gas phase, liquid phase and surfactant, respectively, to generate aqueous foam. 1% mass consistency softwood fiber was used to generate fiber foam. The change in aqueous foam density for any given impeller was limited to ± 40 kg/m3 indicating foam density was dictated by impeller type rather than power input. Single impellers generated bubbly liquids whereas dual impellers generated low-density aqueous foams. Besides, stable foam was produced even at low power input compared to single impellers due to increase in impeller swept volume and blade contact area. Addition of fibers increased the foam density by ~ 100–150 kg/m3 and reduced the half-life time by almost threefold for all impellers due to lower air content and higher bubble size. Placement of high shear impeller (BT6) at bottom and down-pumping axial impeller (HSPBT) on top generated fine bubbles.
Original languageEnglish
Article number890
Number of pages12
JournalSN Applied Sciences
Volume3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 27 Nov 2021
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Keywords

  • Aqueous foam
  • Dynamic mixing
  • Fiber foam
  • Foam generation
  • Impeller geometry
  • Power consumption

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