City Research Online

Turbulence and Cavitation Suppression by Quaternary Ammonium Salt Additives

Naseri, H., Trickett, K., Mitroglou, N. ORCID: 0000-0002-2955-8716 , Karathanassis, I. K. ORCID: 0000-0001-9025-2866, Koukouvinis, P. ORCID: 0000-0002-3945-3707, Gavaises, M. ORCID: 0000-0003-0874-8534, Barbour, R., Diamond, D., Rogers, S. E., Santini, M. & Wang, J. (2018). Turbulence and Cavitation Suppression by Quaternary Ammonium Salt Additives. Scientific Reports, 8(1), pp. 1-15. doi: 10.1038/s41598-018-25980-x


We identify the physical mechanism through which newly developed quaternary ammonium salt (QAS) deposit control additives (DCAs) affect the rheological properties of cavitating turbulent flows, resulting in an increase in the volumetric efficiency of clean injectors fuelled with diesel or biodiesel fuels. Quaternary ammonium surfactants with appropriate counterions can be very effective in reducing the turbulent drag in aqueous solutions, however, less is known about the effect of such surfactants in oil-based solvents or in cavitating flow conditions. Small-angle neutron scattering (SANS) investigations show that in traditional DCA fuel compositions only reverse spherical micelles form, whereas reverse cylindrical micelles are detected by blending the fuel with the QAS additive. Moreover, experiments utilising X-ray micro computed tomography (micro-CT) in nozzle replicas, quantify that in cavitation regions the liquid fraction is increased in the presence of the QAS additive. Furthermore, high-flux X-ray phase contrast imaging (XPCI) measurements identify a flow stabilization effect in the region of vortex cavitation by the QAS additive. The effect of the formation of cylindrical micelles is reproduced with computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations by including viscoelastic characteristics for the flow. It is demonstrated that viscoelasticity can reduce turbulence and suppress cavitation, and subsequently increase the injector’s volumetric efficiency.

Publication Type: Article
Subjects: T Technology > TJ Mechanical engineering and machinery
Departments: School of Science & Technology > Engineering
SWORD Depositor:
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