Is Your Pressure Drop Really Quadratic? | AIChE

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Is Your Pressure Drop Really Quadratic?


Gain a conceptual understanding of pressure drop correlations to check and interpret results from simulators and spreadsheets.

Pressure drop (∆P) is the difference in total pressure between two points due to forces acting on a fluid flowing through a network. Correlations to calculate pressure drop may take quadratic, power law, or other forms. It may be desirable to convert a correlation from one form to another to understand the underlying phenomena. It might also be necessary to convert a correlation to match the form required by a simulation.

This article provides rules of thumb for converting between the power law correlation (Eq. 1) and the zero-intercept quadratic correlation (Eq. 2):



where ∆P is the pressure drop, Q is the fluid flowrate, a, c, and d are proportionality constants, and b is the power law exponent.


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