Air-water and steam-water onset of flooding data at variable pressure in a large diameter tube Conference Paper uri icon


  • © 2016, American Nuclear Society. All rights reserved. An experimental investigation to acquire flooding data for steam-water and air-water fluid pairs in a large-diameter vertical tube at above-atmospheric pressures is being conducted. The experimental program presented herein is the first to use a single test section with controlled boundary conditions for these pairs in a large-diameter vertical tube, enabling consistent comparisons of flooding characteristics. Many data exist for air-water flooding in annular flow within a large-diameter vertical tube and at various pressures. Steam-water flows are of interest for reactor applications but insufficient data are available to enable reliable analysis. Evaluation of the effect of the fluid pair is performed to understand the applicability of the air-water data to steam-water applications. The pressure range for the tests reported herein is 0.1-0.4 MPa (3-45 psig) for the air-water experiments and 0.1-0.2 MPa (3-15 psig) for the steam-water experiments. The steam-water tests were conducted with minimal subcooling to reduce the effect of phase change and permit a more level comparison with the air-water data. All data were taken at the onset of flooding, that is, conditions when flow reversal of the liquid phase first occurs. The data at higher pressures suggest that the momentum transfer necessary for the onset of flooding is achievable with lower superficial gas velocities as the gas density increases. Flooding characteristics are presented in terms of the Kutateladze parameter. If condensation is accounted for, the saturated steam-water data at 0.1 and 0.2 MPa (3 and 15 psig) closely trend with the air-water flooding data.

author list (cited authors)

  • Wynne, N., Garza, M., Vierow, K., Aumiller, D., & Kyle, M.

publication date

  • January 2016