The pseudoparticulate expansion of screen-packed gas-fluidized beds



A study has been made of the expansion characteristics of beds of uniformly sized spherical particles of lead, nickel, sand, glass, and plastic that have been fluidized with air, carbon dioxide, and helium in columns packed with open-ended cylindrical screen packing. The addition of packing to a gas-fluidized bed limits the bubble size, prevents slugging and allows beds of high aspect ratio to expand smoothly in a manner similar to the behavior of liquid-fluidized beds. Moreover, much of the experimental data for gas-fluidized screen-packed beds have yielded straight lines on a Richardson-Zaki type of plot, again similar to the expansion of liquid-fluidized beds. The conditions necessary for this pseudoparticulate behavior in packed gas-fluidized beds are discussed. A correlation, based on the analysis given by Richardson and Zaki for liquid-fluidized beds, is proposed to relate bed porosity with gas velocity, density and viscosity, particle size and density, and bed diameter.