Research Papers

The Impact of Surface Forces on Particle Flow and Membrane Fouling in the Microfiltration of Metalworking Fluids

[+] Author and Article Information
Seounghyun Ham, Shiv G. Kapoor, Richard E. DeVor

Department of Mechanical Science and Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL 61801

John Wentz

School of Engineering, University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, MN 55105

J. Manuf. Sci. Eng 132(1), 011006 (Jan 06, 2010) (9 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4000714 History: Received March 20, 2009; Revised November 13, 2009; Published January 06, 2010; Online January 06, 2010

Microfiltration is an in-process recycling method that shows great potential to extend fluid life and reduce bacterial concentrations in synthetic and semisynthetic metalworking fluids. The primary problem facing the use of microfiltration is membrane fouling, which is the blocking of membrane pores causing reduced flux. In this paper a fluid dynamic model of partial and complete blocking in sintered alumina membranes is developed that includes hydrodynamic, electrostatic, and Brownian forces. Model simulations are employed to study the impact of electrostatic and Brownian motion forces on the progression of partial blocking. The simulations also examine the effects of fluid velocity, particle size, and particle surface potential. The inclusion of electrostatic and Brownian forces is shown to significantly impact the progression of the partial blocking mechanism. The addition of a strong interparticle electrostatic force is shown to eliminate the partial blocking build-up of small particles due to the presence of the repulsive forces between the particles. As a result, the time to complete blocking of the test pore was lengthened, suggesting that flux decline is reduced in the presence of electrostatic forces. The Brownian motion is shown to have a large impact at low fluid velocities. The most effective parameter set is a low fluid velocity, small particle sizes, high microemulsion surface potential, and high membrane surface potential.

Copyright © 2010 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Figure 1

Hydrodynamic, electrostatic, and Brownian forces

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Figure 2

(a) Pore geometry used in simulations and (b) particle shapes

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Figure 3

Final result of simulation from Table 1

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Figure 4

Zeta-potential distributions of semisynthetic MWF

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Figure 5

Progressive fouling simulation including hydrodynamic, electrostatic, and Brownian forces (particle numbers indicated)

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Figure 6

Particle trajectory change due to Brownian motion: (a) hydrodynamic only and (b) hydrodynamic and Brownian motion

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Figure 7

Particle trajectory change due to electrostatic force (black areas are stuck particles): (a) hydrodynamic only and (b) hydrodynamic, Brownian, and electrostatic

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Figure 8

Final pore blocking results of: (a) hydrodynamic, Brownian, and electrostatic at −10 mV, (b) hydrodynamic only, and (c) hydrodynamic, Brownian, and electrostatic at −50 mV

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Figure 9

Pore geometry and flow pattern used for investigation of system parameters

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Figure 10

Possible outcomes of particles: (a) pass through, (b) pass around, and (c) become trapped

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Figure 11

Electric potential distribution

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Figure 12

Interaction of fluid velocity and surface potential for 50 nm particles

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Figure 13

Interaction of fluid velocity and surface potential for 200 nm particles

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Figure 14

Interaction of fluid velocity and particle size for 0 mV surface potential



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