Holdup and pressure drop with gas-liquid flow in a vertical pipe



Vertical upward concurrent air-liquid flow was investigated under isothermal conditions in a test section of 1-in. schedule 40 pipe. Pressure drop was measured with a mercury manometer connected to two pressure taps 20 ft. apart in the section. Liquid was trapped between two quick shutoff valves activated by two solenoid valves. The liquid was druined from the section to provide the holdup data. Six liquids were used to determine the effect of density, viscosity, and surface tension.

The experimental holdup, and two-phase pressure drop data were not in agreement with Lockhart-Martinelli type of correlation for horizontal flow. A statistical correlation for holdup was developed to include fluid physical properties, total mass velocity, and the air-liquid ratio entering the pipe. Similarly a pressure drop correlation was developed which expressed the two-phase pressure drop as a function of the slip velocity, liquid physical properties, and total mass velocity. This correlation showed an average percentage error of less than 15% between the observed and the calculated total pressure drop.