Pressure-driven flow of a Herschel-Bulkley fluid with pressure-dependent rheological parameters
SourcePhysics of Fluids
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The lubrication flow of a Herschel-Bulkley fluid in a symmetric long channel of varying width, 2h(x), is modeled extending the approach proposed by Fusi et al. [“Pressure-driven lubrication flow of a Bingham fluid in a channel: A novel approach,” J. Non-Newtonian Fluid Mech. 221, 66–75 (2015)] for a Bingham plastic. Moreover, both the consistency index and the yield stress are assumed to be pressure-dependent. Under the lubrication approximation, the pressure at zero order depends only on x and the semi-width of the unyielded core is found to be given by σ(x) = −(1 + 1/n)h(x) + C, where n is the power-law exponent and the constant C depends on the Bingham number and the consistency-index and yield-stress growth numbers. Hence, in a channel of constant width, the width of the unyielded core is also constant, despite the pressure dependence of the yield stress, and the pressure distribution is not affected by the yield-stress function. With the present model, the pressure is calculated numerically solving an integro-differential equation and then the position of the yield surface and the two velocity components are computed using analytical expressions. Some analytical solutions are also derived for channels of constant and linearly varying widths. The lubrication solutions for other geometries are calculated numerically. The implications of the pressure-dependence of the material parameters and the limitations of the method are discussed.