An investigation of the generation of Acoustic Emission from the flow of particulate solids in pipelines

N.C. Hii, Steven Wilcox, Chee Tan, Zyh Chong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper is concerned with the generation of the Acoustic Emission (AE) from particulate flow and an investigation of the potential of implementing AE for flow parameters, namely the solid mass flow rate, particle velocity and size, monitoring. A series of experiments has been conducted to gather AE signals from a laboratory scale single flow-loop pneumatic conveying system. Initially, AE sensors were attached to two steel meshes which were placed with a fixed axial distance in the pipeline to study the generation of the AE and subsequently the possibility of using those generated AE to determine particle velocity in the pipeline. Particle velocities measured from this approach were compared with theoretical predictions. The results indicated that this approach could measure the mean particle velocity with reasonable accuracy. The generation of AE on five different sensor mounting locations was also studied. The results showed that sensors mounted on all those locations were able to respond to changes in the flow parameters. However, only two sensor locations (outer bend and Mesh) were chosen for further investigation. The final experimental results indicated that the AE features, namely Root-Mean-Square (RMS) and energy of the AE, are related to the changes in the flow parameters and good correlations were found. Good correlations between the RMS and energy of the AE with the momentum and kinetic energy of the particles, respectively, were also found. Overall, the studies indicated that features of AE have great potential in gas–solid two phase flow parameter monitoring. However, the studies also show that the applicability of the AE techniques to measure solid mass flow rates in practice would require tedious calibration.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)120 - 129
Number of pages9
JournalPowder Technology
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2013


  • acoustic emission
  • gas–solid two-phase flow
  • condition monitoring


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