Novel experiments and a mechanistic model for macroinstabilities in stirred tanks



In this work a new experimental technique and a simple model for the identification and the analysis of macro-instabilities (MIs) in stirred tanks are presented. A pressure transducer is proposed for detecting the MIs that can take place inside a stirred vessel; its main advantages are the non-intrusivity, cheapness, and simplicity of installation and operation. Moreover, it can be used for both laboratory and industrial scale stirred tanks. The experimental technique and the time series analysis method, based on Fast Fourier Transform (FFT), are shown to provide reliable information on the frequency of MIs, through the comparison of the present data with those, from literature, obtained in similar systems. Its applicability to solid-liquid systems is also assessed. Afterwards, the data collected in several conditions differing by geometric characteristics of the stirred tanks and by the physical properties of the systems are presented. Finally, a new simplified model, based on the theory of impinging jets,1 is suggested for predicting the MI frequency. © 2005 American Institute of Chemical Engineers AIChE J, 2006