Investigation of pressure drop in flexible ventilation ducts under different compression ratios and bending angles

Abstract

Due to the large degree of freedom in terms of design and installation, flexible ventilation ducts are commonly used in ventilation systems. However, excessive use of flexible ducts may lead to greater pressure drop and higher energy consumption. This study conducted experimental measurements to characterize the pressure drop in flexible ventilation ducts with different compression ratios and bending angles. This investigation first measured the pressure drop in straight flexible ducts with four compression ratios under various airflow rates. The calculated friction factor for the straight flexible ducts was negatively associated with the compression ratio. Next, the pressure drops in single-bend flexible ducts with various bending angles from 30° to 150° were measured under various airflow rates. The calculated loss coefficient of the bend increased with the bending angle for single-bend flexible ducts. Finally, the influence of the intermediate duct length on the pressure drop across two bends was experimentally investigated. When the length of the intermediate duct was greater than eight times the inner diameter, the pressure drop across a double-bend flexible duct could be calculated from the friction factors and loss coefficients with a relative error less than 1%. The data obtained in this study can be used to calculate the total pressure loss in flexible ventilation ducting systems in buildings.

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Acknowledgements

This work was partially supported by the Early Career Scheme of Research Grants Council of Hong Kong, China (No. 24208518, No. 25210419) and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 51708474).

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Correspondence to Chun Chen.

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Dai, H.K., Huang, W., Fu, L. et al. Investigation of pressure drop in flexible ventilation ducts under different compression ratios and bending angles. Build. Simul. 14, 1251–1261 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12273-020-0737-8

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Keywords

  • ventilation
  • pressure loss
  • flex duct
  • fan energy
  • friction factor
  • loss coefficient