Experimental study of multiphase flow in a model gearbox
Paper in proceedings, 2011
This study concerns dynamics of a two-phase flow around a rotating solid body. Under consideration is a model of a gear wheel in a gearbox which rotates and is partially submerged in oil. The flow of interest is complex and involves effects of free surface dynamics, rotation, and formation of bubbles and drops. Occurring flow regimes include laminar, transitional and turbulent. The major focus of the investigation is on details of the developed flow, and the purpose is validation of numerical methods developed for design and optimization of such components. Current experiments are performed in a test rig which is modelling a generic simplified gearbox with a single isolated rotating wheel. The flow measurements are carried out by using particle image velocimetry (PIV) and the test rig is specially designed for this purpose with the optical access maximized. The flow similarity with respect to a real gearbox is fully maintained and the working fluid is a transparent mineral oil. The PIV measurements are performed at four different rotation speeds for two different wheel configurations in order to cover a spectrum of operational conditions needed for numerical modelling. The emphasis is on the result of experiments on a smooth wheel. The measurements are providing velocity distribution around the wheel and details on bubble and drop distribution.
Bubble and drop dynamics