Canadian Journal of Chemical Engineering, Vol.80, No.2, 186-193, 2002
Packed bed structure: Evaluation of radial particle distribution
A model describing the radial distribution of monosized spheres in randomly packed beds up to distances of about two particle diameters from the vessel wall is presented here. The model is based on the existence of a highly ordered layer of particles adjacent to the wall followed by a more diffuse, but still identifiable, second layer. Expressions generated from simple geometrical concepts (intersection between a cylindrical surface and a sphere) straightforwardly allow calculating the radial voidage profile given the radial distribution of particle centers and vice versa. These expressions are employed to fit the model to measures of voidage profiles within a wide range of aspect ratios, a = (R-T/R-p). The model can be used to accurately predict radial voidage profiles, but it is stressed that the identification of particle distribution constitutes more valuable information than an empirical expression for describing voidage variations.