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Temperature and particles settling out - Input Junkie
March 24th, 2015
01:06 pm

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Temperature and particles settling out
I was thinking about what effect temperature would have on how long it takes particles to settle out of a liquid, and came up with three guesses.

One is that higher temperatures would make particles take longer because heat would keep the liquid stirred up. Another is that heat would cause settling to happen faster because heat makes everything happen faster. Ok, that's probably not quite true, but a very cold and sticky mix wouldn't let the particles move down very fast.

I'm betting on number three-- this is actually something very complicated, and it's why industrial processes need engineers using approximations to figure out what's likely to happen. In particular, it wouldn't surprise me if there's a temperature range for fastest settling of particular combinations of particles and liquids, and the behavior of the particles will be affected by their size and shape, not just their chemical composition.

This entry was posted at http://nancylebov.dreamwidth.org/1063830.html. Comments are welcome here or there. comment count unavailable comments so far on that entry.

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From:kgbooklog
Date:March 24th, 2015 07:38 pm (UTC)
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Higher temperatures will increase how many of the particles will dissolve in the liquid. (IIRC)
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From:wcg
Date:March 24th, 2015 08:34 pm (UTC)
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The answer is, "it depends." It depends on the liquid, and on the particles. As a general rule of thumb, any solid particles in suspension will settle out of a liquid as it is cooled, but as with any general rule, there are lots of exceptions.

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From:elenbarathi
Date:March 25th, 2015 04:16 am (UTC)
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What wcg said. Is the material to be precipitated dissolved, like sugar in water, or is it suspended, like ash in oil? The sugar will precipitate out of the water as it cools, forming rock candy. The ash will precipitate out of the oil as it heats up and the viscosity of the oil decreases.
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