Minor Losses

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HEAD LOSS Fluid Flow Minor Losses The losses that occur in pipelines due to bends, elbows, joints, valves, etc. are sometimes called minor losses.   This is a misnomer because in many cases these losses are more important than the  losses  due  to  pipe  friction,  considered  in  the  preceding  section.    For  all  minor  losses  in turbulent flow, the head loss varies as the square of the velocity.   Thus a convenient method of expressing  the  minor  losses  in  flow  is  by  means  of  a  loss  coefficient  (k).   Values  of  the  loss coefficient (k) for typical situations and fittings is found in standard handbooks.   The form of Darcy’s  equation  used  to  calculate  minor  losses  of  individual  fluid  system  components  is expressed by Equation 3-15. (3-15) Hf kv 2 2g Equivalent Piping Length Minor losses may be expressed in terms of the equivalent length (Leq) of pipe that would have the same head loss for the same discharge flow rate.   This relationship can be found by setting the two forms of Darcy’s equation equal to each other. f L  v2 D  2  g k v2 2  g This yields two relationships that are useful. (3-16) Leq kD f (3-17) k f Leq D Typical  values  of  Leq/D  for  common  piping  system  components  are  listed  in  Table  1.    The equivalent length of piping that will cause the same head loss as a particular component can be determined  by multiplying  the value of  Leq/D for that component  by the diameter  of the pipe. The higher the value of Leq/D, the longer the equivalent length of pipe. HT-03 Page 34 Rev. 0


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