An equal settling ratio is an important factor in estimating particle separation accuracy. However, this factor is often calculated using the settling velocity in stationary water, there are no examples of calculation of the equal settling ratio in an actual separator. This is difficult because particle movement in a separator is very complicated, and even simple periodic motions, such as the oscillation field used with many separators, are ignored in many cases. The authors have previously reported on the relation between the equal settling ratio and the oscillation frequency by analysis of particle movement in vertically oscillating water, using spherical particles of glass (average size 435 μm) and zirconia (202 μm) which have the same settling velocity in stationary water. In this study, the influence of particle diameter on the change in the settling velocity in oscillating water was experimentally investigated for three pairs of glass and zirconia particles having different sizes under 0.5 mm, which have the same settling velocity in stationary water. The settling velocities of different-sized particles decreased at different rates in oscillating water, indicating that the equal settling ratio is reduced by water oscillation. We conclude that water oscillation improves the accuracy of size separation for glass particles over 300 μm and zirconia particles over 150 μm when glass and zirconia particles are separated from each other with the difference of these settling velocities.
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