Hydraulic Characteristics

A fluidized-bed follows Archimedes' principle, i.e., the bed exerts a buoyant force equal to the weight of the displaced fluid. For example, if a stone and a piece of wood of identical size and shape are dropped into a fluidized bed, equal volumes of catalyst media are displaced. Since these volumes are identical, they are equal in weight, and therefore the same buoyant force is exerted. However, the wood floats, whereas the stone sinks, just as they do in water due to differences in mass densities.

Fluidized media also exhibit free-flowing characteristics. A hole in the bed area of the incinerator has media flowing through it much as water flows through a hole in a container. Also, the surface of the fluidized media parallels that of the earth; if its container is tilted, the bed surface remains parallel with the ground. Lastly, the fluidized bed exhibits an apparent viscosity, i.e., forces arise within the fluid that reduce the flow.

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