• activated carbon;
  • particles;
  • filter;
  • filtration;
  • protective clothing

Laminar forced convection mass transfer to single layers of equidistantly and nonequidistantly spaced spheres perpendicular to the flow direction is studied. Average Sherwood numbers are reported as a function of geometric configurations and flow conditions, for open frontal area fractions between 0.25 and 0.95, Schmidt numbers between 0.7 and 10, and Reynolds numbers (based on the sphere diameter and the free stream velocity) between 0.1 and 100. For equidistantly spaced arrays of spheres, a general analytical expression is proposed for the average Sherwood number as a function of the Reynolds number, Schmidt number and the open frontal area fraction, as well as asymptotic scaling rules for small and large Reynolds. For all studied Schmidt numbers, equidistant arrays exhibit decreasing average Sherwood numbers for decreasing open frontal area fractions at low Reynolds numbers. For high Reynolds numbers, the Sherwood number approaches that of a single sphere, independent of the open frontal area fraction. For equal open frontal area fractions, the Sherwood number in nonequidistant arrays is lower than in equidistant arrays for intermediate Reynolds numbers. For very low and high Reynolds numbers, nonuniformity does not influence mass transfer. © 2012 American Institute of Chemical Engineers AIChE J, 59: 1400–1408, 2013