SEPARATION OF GAS MIXTURES BY THERMOACOUSTIC WAVES

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Imposing sound on a binary gas mixture in a duct separates the two gases along the acoustic-propagation axis. Mole-fraction differences as large as 10% and separation fluxes as high as 0.001 M-squared c, where M is Mach number and c is sound speed, are easily observed. We describe the accidental discovery of this phenomenon in a helium-xenon mixture, subsequent experiments with a helium-argon mixture, and theoretical developments. The phenomenon occurs because a thin layer of the gas adjacent to the wall is immobilized by viscosity while the rest of the gas moves back and forth with the wave, and the ... continued below

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SWIFT, G.W.; GELLER, D.A. & SPOOR, P.S. June 1, 2001.

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Imposing sound on a binary gas mixture in a duct separates the two gases along the acoustic-propagation axis. Mole-fraction differences as large as 10% and separation fluxes as high as 0.001 M-squared c, where M is Mach number and c is sound speed, are easily observed. We describe the accidental discovery of this phenomenon in a helium-xenon mixture, subsequent experiments with a helium-argon mixture, and theoretical developments. The phenomenon occurs because a thin layer of the gas adjacent to the wall is immobilized by viscosity while the rest of the gas moves back and forth with the wave, and the heat capacity of the wall holds this thin layer of the gas at constant temperature while the rest of the gas experiences temperature oscillations due to the wave's oscillating pressure. The oscillating temperature gradient causes the light and heavy atoms in the gas to take turns diffusing into and out of the immobilized layer, so that the oscillating motion of the wave outside the immobilized layer tends to carry light-enriched gas in one direction and heavy-enriched gas in the opposite direction. Experiment and theory are in very good agreement for the initial separation fluxes and the saturation mole-fraction differences.

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80 Kilobytes pages

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  • Report No.: LA-UR-01-3040
  • Grant Number: W-7405-ENG-36
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 783159
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc724951

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) is the Department of Energy (DOE) office that collects, preserves, and disseminates DOE-sponsored research and development (R&D) results that are the outcomes of R&D projects or other funded activities at DOE labs and facilities nationwide and grantees at universities and other institutions.

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  • June 1, 2001

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  • Sept. 29, 2015, 5:31 a.m.

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  • March 30, 2016, 6:13 p.m.

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SWIFT, G.W.; GELLER, D.A. & SPOOR, P.S. SEPARATION OF GAS MIXTURES BY THERMOACOUSTIC WAVES, article, June 1, 2001; New Mexico. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc724951/: accessed January 17, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.