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The influence of the flow pattern of the contaminated air on the adsorption behaviour of an activated carbon filter

Authors
  • Windey, Brecht1
  • Van Riet, Romuald1
  • Boutillara, Yasmine1, 2
  • Lodewyckx, Peter1
  • 1 Royal Military Academy, Department of Chemistry, Renaissancelaan 30, Brussels, B-1000, Belgium , Brussels (Belgium)
  • 2 University of Mons, Service de Thermodynamique, Faculté Polytechnique, UMONS, 20 Place du Parc, Mons, 7000, Belgium , Mons (Belgium)
Type
Published Article
Journal
Adsorption
Publisher
Springer US
Publication Date
Apr 30, 2019
Volume
25
Issue
4
Pages
757–763
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1007/s10450-019-00094-6
Source
Springer Nature
Keywords
License
Yellow

Abstract

For many years, there has been debate, both in the scientific and user communities, on the influence of the flow pattern on the adsorption behaviour of a filter filled with activated carbon. Some authors reported significant differences in the breakthrough times of gases and vapours, whereas others did not. Some laboratories are switching to testing with a pulse flow, but this is not without problems. Hence, the goal of this work is twofold: to understand the influence of a real flow pattern on the breakthrough time for organic vapours of a gas mask filter and to ascertain if this influence can be modelled. The work demonstrates that the difference in breakthrough time is due to the influence of the flow pattern on the width of the mass transfer zone, via its impact on adsorption kinetics. Within the validity domain of the Wheeler-Jonas equation, this effect can be easily and accurately modelled, giving excellent estimates of the experimental breakthrough times. There are still some issues with using this model in the presence of ambient water vapour, as the water uptake from a pulsed air flow cannot be estimated correctly yet.

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