A New Capacitance Sensor for Measuring the Void Fraction of Two-Phase Flow Through Tube Bundles Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • Evaluating the two-phase flow parameters across tube bundles is crucial to the analysis of vibration excitation mechanisms. These parameters include the temporal and local variation of void fraction and phase redistribution. Understanding these two-phase parameters is essential to evaluating the stability threshold of tube bundle configurations. In this work, capacitance sensor probes were designed using finite element analysis to ensure high sensor sensitivity and optimum response. A simulation-based approach was used to calibrate and increase the accuracy of the void fraction measurement. The simulation results were used to scale the normalized capacitance and minimize the sensor uncertainty to ±5%. The sensor and required conditioning circuits were fabricated and tested for measuring the instantaneous void fraction in a horizontal triangular tube bundle array under both static and dynamic two-phase flow conditions. The static calibration of the sensor was able to reduce the uncertainty to ±3% while the sensor conditioning circuit was able to capture instantaneous void fraction signals with frequencies up to 2.5 kHz.

publication date

  • April 8, 2020