Faster Taylor bubbles

Guangzhao Zhou, Andrea Prosperetti*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)
77 Downloads (Pure)


Gas volumes with an equivalent spherical diameter greater than that of the tube in which they rise by buoyancy - so-called Taylor bubbles - assume a characteristic bullet shape and ascend with a velocity that is dependent primarily on the tube diameter, and also on the physical properties of the liquid, but, remarkably, is mostly independent of the gas volume. The requirement of liquid volume conservation suggests a plausible explanation of this paradoxical feature in that the space vacated under the rising bubble must be replenished by the liquid film falling along the bubble surface. It is demonstrated by numerical means that, by limiting the bubble diameter, a cylindrical 'cage' of thin vertical rods coaxial with the tube permits the flow rate of this film to increase, with the result that the bubble is able to ascend with a significantly higher velocity than in an empty tube with the same diameter.

Original languageEnglish
Article number432
JournalJournal of fluid mechanics
Early online date8 Jun 2021
Publication statusPublished - 10 Aug 2021


  • UT-Hybrid-D
  • core-annular flow
  • gas/liquid flow
  • bubble dynamics


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