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Open AccessArticle

Wetting Fraction in a Tubular Reactor with Solid Foam Packing and Gas/Liquid Co-Current Downflow

AREVA Endowed Chair of Imaging Techniques in Energy and Process Engineering, Technische Universität Dresden, 01062 Dresden, Germany
Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf, Bautzner Landstraße 400, 01328 Dresden, Germany
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Catalysts 2018, 8(9), 396;
Received: 5 August 2018 / Revised: 7 September 2018 / Accepted: 12 September 2018 / Published: 14 September 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Structured Catalysts for Catalytic Processes Intensification)
PDF [3402 KB, uploaded 21 January 2019]


The performance of fixed-bed reactors with structured catalysts depends heavily on the gas–liquid–solid contacting pattern. For a broad range of flow conditions, the liquid phase does not cover the solid surface of the packing homogeneously; this is known as partial wetting. The wetting fraction in solid foams was obtained using a modified electrochemical measurement method with adaption of the limiting-current technique in different pre-wetting scenarios. The external wetting fraction, which is defined as fraction of the external solid-foam area covered by the liquid phase to the total external solid-foam area, is directly linked to the overall rate of reaction through the overall liquid mass transfer rate. The wetting fraction decreased with an increase in foam density, a process which was related to decreasing the strut thickness, increasing foam surface area, and consequently, decreasing the wetted area. Additionally, the results indicate that a better distribution of liquid and an increased wetting fraction occurred when a spray nozzle distributor was applied. A new wetting correlation for solid foams is proposed to estimate the wetting fraction with consideration of foam morphology and flow regime. View Full-Text
Keywords: multiphase; solid foam; wetting; electrochemical method; gas/liquid; pre-wetting mode multiphase; solid foam; wetting; electrochemical method; gas/liquid; pre-wetting mode

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Mohammed, I.; Hampel, U. Wetting Fraction in a Tubular Reactor with Solid Foam Packing and Gas/Liquid Co-Current Downflow. Catalysts 2018, 8, 396.

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