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Seminar Series 2018 – Sarah Mena, Ph.D.
September 17 @ 4:05 pm - 5:00 pm
Sarah Mena, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Michigan
“The Secret Life of Particles: Understanding Multiphase Flows in Pipes and Blood Vessels”
Mixtures of liquid and particles are present in many engineering, geological, and biological processes including hydraulic conveying, energy conversion and the flow of blood in the circulatory system. The presence of the solids can alter the behavior of the flow by modifying the rheological properties of the fluid and changing the momentum and heat transfer. How the flow changes is an intricate function of many variables including the concentration, Reynolds number, and the particle properties. Understanding the interactions between the fluid and the dispersed phase is valuable for scientific problems ranging from biological to industrial areas.
For example, blood is a mixture of solids –primarily red blood cells–suspended in a fluid. The rheological properties of blood can be an indicator of disease in biomedicine with high values of viscosity being correlated with cardiovascular and cerebrovascular diseases. In addition, red blood cells with lower deformability are present in sepsis, sickle cell disease, and malaria. A method to measure blood rheological properties using microfluidic devices will be presented that can be used as a point-of-care technology. On the other extreme, solid-liquid turbulent pipe flow in industrial plants is difficult to predict. To expand the knowledge in this area, experimental data showing the influence of particle size, concentration, and Reynolds number on the flow profiles will be presented. The data include direct measurements of the three velocity components for the individual phases, Reynolds stresses, and turbulence modulation. These problems are just examples in the vast number of applications where the “secret life of particles” modifies fluid mechanics processes.
Dr. Sarah Mena received a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Universidad Centroamericana“José SimeónCañas” in El Salvador and a PhD in Chemical Engineering from the University of Florida under the guidance of Dean Jennifer Sinclair Curtis. She was a visiting researcher at IRSTEA Laboratories in France through the NSF “Partnership for International Research and Education on Multiphase Fluid Science and Technologies” program at University of Florida. Dr. Mena is now a Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Michigan in the group of Professor Mark Burns.
MONDAY, September 17, 2018
4:05 pm| 201 NEB