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Insights into agglomeration and separation of fly-ash particles in a sound wave field

Lu, Mengshi, Fang, Mengxiang, He, Mingchun, Liu, Shuxin, Luo, Zhongyang
RSC advances 2019 v.9 no.9 pp. 5224-5233
acoustics, cameras, computer software, fly ash, models, photographs
The efficiency of fine particle removal by using traditional devices is relatively low. Acoustic agglomeration is an effective pretreatment method that agglomerates particles before they enter a particulate control device so that they can be easily removed. The movements of particles exposed in a sound wave field were captured using a high-speed camera in this study. Agglomeration and separation of two particles were directly observed. Photographs were analyzed frame by frame to obtain motion information. A model was constructed, and COMSOL Multiphysics software was employed to simulate their relative motions. The simulation results matched the experimental results well. The conditions under which an aggregate consisting of two particles will be separated by a sound wave were calculated. The calculated results revealed that a non-breakable region exists: when sizes of primary particles are within this region, agglomerates will not be separated into smaller particles, but outside this region, agglomerates can be separated. The observation of particle motion deepens understanding of acoustic agglomeration and separation processes taking place in the agglomeration chamber. The calculation of separation of agglomerates can guide enhancement of acoustic agglomeration processes.