On non-axisymmetric flow structures of graphene suspensions in Taylor–Couette reactors

Elcicek H., Guzel B.

International Journal of Environmental Science and Technology, vol.17, no.7, pp.3475-3484, 2020 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 17 Issue: 7
  • Publication Date: 2020
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s13762-020-02713-0
  • Journal Name: International Journal of Environmental Science and Technology
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Agricultural & Environmental Science Database, Aqualine, Aquatic Science & Fisheries Abstracts (ASFA), Biotechnology Research Abstracts, CAB Abstracts, Compendex, Environment Index, Geobase, INSPEC, Pollution Abstracts, Veterinary Science Database
  • Page Numbers: pp.3475-3484
  • Keywords: Graphene oxide, Graphene suspensions, Taylor vortices, Taylor–Couette flows
  • Yıldız Technical University Affiliated: Yes


The quality of graphene sheets significantly depends on the degree of oxidation of graphite and the methods used for synthesis. Therefore, selecting an eco-friendly and cost-effective process is an important step in order to increase the oxidation level. The latest studies show that Taylor–Couette reactors are one of the best options to improve the oxidation level of graphite. Graphene suspensions show shear-thinning behavior, and the emergent flow structures in TC flows significantly influence the oxidation degree. In this study, we investigated the flow patterns of shear-thinning fluids in a TC reactor. The effect of radius ratio, power-law index and the rotating direction of the cylinders on the flow patterns and their critical values is studied experimentally in a Taylor–Couette flow that occurred between concentric cylinders. The Reynolds numbers defined with the wall shear viscosities (Rei and Reo) are used for evaluating the critical conditions of various flow structures. The results demonstrate that fluid properties and radius ratio may have significant destabilization effects in forming non-axisymmetric flow patterns and change their critical values. The characteristics of various flow regimes are altered substantially with increasing inner cylinder speed. A strong influence of the rotation direction of the outer cylinder on flow structures and their critical Reynolds numbers has also been revealed in this study. The obtained results also provide a deeper understanding of fluid–suspension interactions in TC reactors. These new findings will help in designing and developing more efficient TC reactors to be used in synthesizing high-quality graphene products.