Erosion Wear of Axial Flow Impellersin a Solid-liquid Suspension

I. Fořt, J. Medek, F. Ambros


A study was made of the erosion wear of the blades of pitched blade impellers in a suspension of waste gypsum from a thermal power station (vol. concentration CV=18.3 %, particle mean diameter d=0.1 mm, degree of hardness “2.5”) and silicious sand (CV=10 %, d=0.4 mm, degree of hardness “7.5”) in water under a turbulent flow regime of agitated charge when complete homogeneity of the suspension was achieved. Experiments were carried out on pilot plant mixing equipment made of stainless steel (diameter of cylindrical vessel T=390 mm, diameter of impeller D=100 mm, impeller off-bottom clearance h=100 mm) equipped with four wall radial baffles (width b=39 mm) and an impeller with four inclined plane blades (pitch angle α =20°, 30°, 45°, relative blade width W/D=0.2) made either of rolled brass (Brinell hardness 40–50 BH) or of structural steel (Brinell hardness 100–120 BH) always pumping the liquid downwards towards the flat vessel bottom. Two erosion process mechanisms appear, depending on the hardness of the solid particles in the suspension: while the particles of gypsum (lower hardness) generate a uniform sheet erosion over the whole surface of the impeller blade, the particles of silicious sand (higher hardness) generate wear of the leading edge of the impeller blades, together with a reduction of the surface of the worn blade. The hardness of the impeller blade also affects the rate of the erosion process: the higher the hardness of the impeller blade, the lower the wear rate of the blade. This study consists of a description of the kinetics of the erosion process of both mechanisms in dependence on the pitch angle of the tested impellers. While the wear of the leading edge of the blade exhibits a monotonous dependence on the pitch angle, the sheet erosion exhibits the maximum rate within the interval of the pitch angles tested α ϵ <20°; 45°>.However, generally the pitch angle α =45° seems to be the most convenient angle of blade inclination when both investigated mechanisms of the blade erosion process are considered at their minimum rate.


pitched blade impeller; erosion wear; solid-liquid suspension

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ISSN 1210-2709 (Print)
ISSN 1805-2363 (Online)
Published by the Czech Technical University in Prague