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Newtonian and Non-Newtonian Flows through Mini-channels and Micro-scale Orifices for SAGD Applications Open Access


Other title
Newtonian flow
Micro- scale orifice
Slotted liners
Non-Newtonian flow
Type of item
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Ansari, Shadi
Supervisor and department
Dr. David S. Nobes (Mechanical Engineering)
Examining committee member and department
Prashant Waghmare (Mechanical Engineering)
Sina Ghaemi (Mechanical Engineering)
Department of Mechanical Engineering

Date accepted
Graduation date
Master of Science
Degree level
This experimental investigation examined the inflow to a producer well geometry found in a typical steam assisted gravity drainage (SAGD) process. The flow of Newtonian and non-Newtonian fluid through mini-channels (Dh = 0.837 µm) and micro-scale orifices (keystone slots, Dh = 0.858 µm) were considered. The major goal was to describe the velocity distribution and this was undertaken using particle image velocimetry (PIV). The velocity profile determined for the flow through the long channel was used to find the rheological parameters of the fluid. Theory of the rheology of non-Newtonian fluids along with PIV measurements were used to find the flow index, n, and flow consistency index, k. These where validated against commercial rheometer. It was shown that measuring the velocity distribution of a non-Newtonian fluid can be used to identify rheological property of the fluid. The second set of experiments considered the flow of Newtonian (water), and non-Newtonian (polyacrylamide) fluids to study the respective velocity profiles using PIV. The results showed that an increase in slot angle, θ, increased the gradient at which the velocity reduced along the channel. At low flow rates, the increase in slot angle (θ≥ 6°) caused a flow separation phenomenon which was only present for the Newtonian fluid. Comparison with theory showed that the Newtonian flow profiles found from experiment matched well while for the non-Newtonian fluid the profiles deviated from expected. This was a result of the contraction-expansion geometry which increased the shear rate giving the fluid a pseudo-Newtonian-like behavior.
This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for the purpose of private, scholarly or scientific research. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
Citation for previous publication
as Ansari, S., Rashid, M. A. I., Chatterjee, O., Waghmare, P. R., Ma, Y., & Nobes, D. (2015) “Visualization of the viscous effects of non-Newtonian fluids flowing in mini-channels” in proceeding of the 10th, Pacific Symposium on Flow Visualization and Image Processing.

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