May 2009

Piping/Fluid Flow

Explicit friction factor correlations for turbulent fluid flow in noncircular ducts and polymeric fluids

New equation provides highly accurate estimates

Goudar, C. T., Bayer HealthCare; Sonnad, J. R., University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center

The friction factor for flow of a Newtonian fluid in circular pipes is defined as:1      where f is the Moody friction factor,2 D the pipe diameter, L the pipe length,  the pressure drop,  the fluid density and  the fluid velocity. The friction factor in Eq. 1 is a function of the Reynolds number alone for smooth pipes and under laminar flow conditions (Re < 2,100), this relationship can be expressed as:     where Re is the Reynolds number. For turbulent fluid flow in smooth pipes, the Nikuradse-Prandtl-von Kármán (NPK) equation3–5 has been widely accepted as the standard approach for describing friction factor: &#

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