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Analysis of orientation and tensor properties of airborne fibrous particle flow

Ke Sun (Department of Building Services Engineering, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong, China)
Lin Lu (Department of Building Services Engineering, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong, China)
Yu Jiang (Department of Building Services Engineering, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong, China)

International Journal of Numerical Methods for Heat & Fluid Flow

ISSN: 0961-5539

Article publication date: 28 October 2014

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to study the effect of particle shapes (spherical particle and nonspherical fiber) on their orientation distributions in indoor environment.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper adopted a particle model to predict the fibrous particle flow and distribution, and analyzed the orientation distributions of nonspherical fiber particles and spherical particles in airflows like indoor places. Fokker-Planck model was employed to solve the orientation behavior of nonspherical fiber particles.

Findings

The simulation results discover that the nonspherical airborne fiber particles have very different characteristics and behaviors and their orientation distributions are totally different from the uniform distribution of spherical particles. The investigation of the particle orientation tensor and orientation strength indicates that the airflow field becomes more anisotropic due to the suspended fibers. The airborne fiber particles increase the viscosity of the room airflow due to the fiber induced additional viscosity.

Originality/value

Orientation tensor, strength and additional viscosity in fibrous flow are seldom investigated indoor. This research reveals that the particle shape has to be considered in the analysis of particle transport and distribution in indoor places as most suspended indoor particles are nonspherical.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

This work was financially supported by the Hong Kong Polytechnic University through research grant A-PJ61 and A-PJ12. The authors would like to specifically acknowledge the valuable contributions by Professor J.Z. Lin from China Jiliang University and Zhejiang University to this paper.

Citation

Sun, K., Lu, L. and Jiang, Y. (2014), "Analysis of orientation and tensor properties of airborne fibrous particle flow", International Journal of Numerical Methods for Heat & Fluid Flow, Vol. 24 No. 8, pp. 1795-1802. https://doi.org/10.1108/HFF-04-2013-0118

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2014, Emerald Group Publishing Limited