Date of Award

Fall 2006

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Chemical Engineering - (M.S.)

Department

Chemical Engineering

First Advisor

Robert Pfeffer

Second Advisor

Norman W. Loney

Third Advisor

Jing Wu

Abstract

Fluidization serves as a primary operation used to disperse, handle and process nanoparticles, but due to the complications involved with achieving homogenous fluidization of the agglomerates of nanoparticles, several methods have been developed to assist their conventional mode of fluidization.

In this work, the conventional mode of fluidization was coupled with secondary gas flow emerging from a micro jet nozzle. The effect of the jet on the fluidization behavior of various APF and ABF nanopowders was studied and compared with the pure conventional fluidization mode. Generally, experiments were conducted to find the optimal operation of the jet by varying parameters such as, nozzle size, nozzle pressure, number of nozzles, orientation, position of nozzle, and the amount of powder affected by the nozzle.

It was found that under the influence of the jet, better dispersion of the bed of nanoparticle agglomerates was achieved, and this was true for the different powders that were used under different operating conditions. Besides improved dispersion, it was also found that the jet served to break down the larger agglomerates, to reduce the minimum fluidization velocity, to delay the onset of bubbling, and to convert the fluidization behavior of ABF powder to APF.

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