Spray characteristics of a swirl atomiser in trigger sprayers using water–ethanol mixtures

Authors

  • Shanshan Yao,

    1. Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, North Carolina State University, 911 Oval Drive-Campus Box 7910, Raleigh, North Carolina 27695, U.S.A.
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  • Tiegang Fang

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, North Carolina State University, 911 Oval Drive-Campus Box 7910, Raleigh, North Carolina 27695, U.S.A.
    • Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, North Carolina State University, 911 Oval Drive-Campus Box 7910, Raleigh, North Carolina 27695, U.S.A.
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Abstract

Pressure swirl atomisers are widely used in both industry and daily life. It is critical to understand the spray transient behaviour for better design of these systems. This paper presents an experimental study of conical liquid sheets breakup from a swirl atomiser nozzle in trigger sprayers. Spray and atomisation characteristics were measured and analysed. Water–ethanol mixtures were used to simulate different fluids on the breakup and atomisation quality of the spray development process with a wide range of surface tension while maintaining relatively small changes in fluid viscosity and density. The spray images were taken by a high speed digital camera and post-processed to analyse the global spray structure, spray cone angle, and breakup length. The droplet size and its distribution were measured using a laser diffraction technique. It was observed that the surface waves grow rapidly on the cone-shaped liquid sheets and breakup into liquid ligaments and droplets during the initial stage of fluid dispensing. Then the spray transitions into the developed stage. Near the end of the dispensing process, the liquid cone collapses with poor atomisation (large droplets) due to momentum loss. The comparison between different fluids showed that the spray cone angle and liquid breakup length decreased with the increase of ethanol percentage ratio. The percentiles parameters, Sauter mean diameter (SMD) and particle size distribution were measured and compared for different locations. High surface tension fluids produce larger droplets than lower surface tension fluids, which have the same trend as the percentiles parameters and SMD. Results also show that droplet size and its distribution depend on the location of the measurement. Generally speaking, smaller droplet size is found for a location away from the nozzle axis in the vertical direction. In the horizontal direction, larger droplet sizes are found for a location closer to the nozzle exit. © 2013 Canadian Society for Chemical Engineering

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