Research Papers

Metastable Liquid Cavitation Control (With Memory) Apparatus, Methodology, and Results: For Radiation Detection, Reactor Safety, and Other Industrial Applications

[+] Author and Article Information
Rusi P. Taleyarkhan

College of Engineering,
Purdue University,
400 Central Drive,
W. Lafayette, IN 47907
e-mail: rusi@purdue.edu;

Jeffrey A. Webster

College of Engineering,
Purdue University,
400 Central Drive,
W. Lafayette, IN 47907
e-mail: jawebster@purdue.edu

Anthony Sansone

College of Engineering,
Purdue University,
400 Central Drive,
W. Lafayette, IN 47907
e-mail: asansone@purdue.edu

Brian C. Archambault

Technology and Production, Sagamore Adams Laboratories, LLC,
3601 Sagamore Parkway, Suite L, Lafayette, IN 47904
e-mail: barchambault@salabsllc.com

Randall Reames

College of Engineering,
Purdue University,
400 Central Drive,
W. Lafayette, IN 47907
e-mail: qualityreames@gmail.com

Colin D. West

University of Tennessee,
242 Joel Road,
Oliver Springs, TN 37830
e-mail: herderwestc@gmail.com

Manuscript received August 13, 2016; final manuscript received September 10, 2016; published online December 20, 2016. Assoc. Editor: Jay F. Kunze.

ASME J of Nuclear Rad Sci 3(1), 011004 (Dec 20, 2016) (10 pages) Paper No: NERS-15-1176; doi: 10.1115/1.4034975 History: Received August 13, 2016; Accepted September 10, 2016

We present a method to simultaneously pressurize fluid filled containers from outside and within, results of experiments with temporary 2 h of fluid precompression followed by overpressure removal before testing for cavitation strength and sensitivity to neutron radiation of multi-mL quantities of widely used unfiltered and undegassed liquids, such as water, ethanol, and dodecane (a surrogate jet fuel), enclosed within containers using glass, epoxy, and steel. We found that in contrast to prior methods involving laborious degassing and purification, a straightforward one-step approach using only a modest 2 h precompression treatment at a pressure of 0.7+ MPa enabled us, reproducibly, to reach directly the highest attainable “negative” (subvacuum) pressures attainable in our apparatus (0.7  MPa)—enabling efficient sensitivity to neutron-type radiation. Cavitation strength results are explained on theoretical grounds. However, surprisingly using the technique of this paper, the 2-h precompressed (unfiltered, undegassed) fluid also retained memory of this property, after the overpressure was removed, even 3 months later—thereby suggesting that active cavitation nuclei suppression can be extended to long periods of time. Successful results for cavitation suppression (in the absence of ionizing radiation) through 0.7  MPa were also attainable for fluids in simultaneous contact with a combination of glass, steel, and epoxy surfaces. The relative importance of cavitation strength retention at liquid–wall interfaces versus within the bulk of the fluids is reported along with implications for high-efficiency nuclear particle detection and spectroscopy, and nuclear fission water reactor safety thermal-hydraulic assessments for blowdown transients.

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Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 3

Attainable negative (tension) pressures versus precompression (∼30  min after overpressure removal)—estimated experimental error of pressure ∼±10%–12% of quoted values.

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 2

Precompression process/equipment for fluid-spinner apparatus

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 1

Schematic diagram of a centrifugally tensioned metastable fluid detector (CTMFD) apparatus—Centrifugal forces during rotation in fluid space in lower arms space leads to pneg tension (stretching) pressures in the central bulb region; centrifugal force of fluid in upper arms balances out the outward forces from the lower arm at bend region.

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 4

Results of long-term memory retention of prior (6.9 MPa, 2 h) overpressure of dodecane bearing spinner enclosure for enabling sustained cavitation strength enhancement—estimated experimental error of pressure ∼±10%–12% of quoted values.

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 5

Testing setup modification to include effect of nonglass (borosilicate tube) forms including glass beads, steel sphere, and epoxy (RTV) sealant. Note: Void space as labeled means air-filled space as stated in Fig. 1.



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