RESEARCH PAPERS: Evaporation and Boiling

Flashing Inception in Water During Rapid Decompression

[+] Author and Article Information
E. Elias

Department of Mechanical Engineering, Technion, Haifa 32000, Israel

P. L. Chambré

Department of Nuclear Engineering, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720

J. Heat Transfer 115(1), 231-238 (Feb 01, 1993) (8 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2910654 History: Received July 01, 1991; Revised June 01, 1992; Online May 23, 2008


A phenomenological model is presented for predicting the thermodynamic conditions at the onset of flashing in liquid undergoing a static or flow depressurization transient. It is shown that at extremely high rates of decompression (pulse expansion), a liquid may reach the homogeneous nucleation limit of superheat before appreciable phase transition occurs. A criterion for pulse expansion is derived by an asymptotic solution of the mass and energy equations in conjunction with the equation for spontaneous bubble nucleation and growth near the flashing inception point. The effect of impurities and dissolved gases is considered by an empirically defined heterogeneous nucleation coefficient. The model predicts the minimum pressure at the flashing point with a probable error of less than 11 percent, using 83 experimental data points.

Copyright © 1993 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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