Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at Illinois

Professor Hanratty authors new book, “Physics of Gas-Liquid Flows”

A book by Thomas J. Hanratty on “Physics of Gas-Liquid Flows” was published by Cambridge University Press in October 2013. The text is ideal for engineers seeking to enhance the safety and efficiency of natural gas pipelines, water-cooled nuclear reactors, absorbers, distillation columns, gas lift pumps, and multiphase chemical reactors.

“The review of advanced concepts in fluid mechanics in this book enables both graduate students and practicing engineers to tackle the scientific literature and engage in advanced research,” Hanratty said. He observes that “the scientific community recognizes that the principal problem in developing an understanding of the behavior of multiphase flows is to relate macroscopic behavior to small scale interactions. The book summarizes progress in this direction and contributes to the establishment of multiphase flow as a new branch of fluid dynamics.”

Hanratty is professor emeritus in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at the University of Illinois. He joined the faculty of the Chemical Engineering Department in 1953, retiring in 2007. After retiring, he spent one year as Acting Head of the School of Chemical Sciences and presided over a reorganization of the School. He has continued his research activities through interactions with postdoctoral students and visiting scientists.

Hanratty’s research has received numerous recognitions including the inaugural Multiphase Flow International Prize, honorary doctorates from Institut National Polytechnique Toulouse and Villanova University. He has been elected to the National Academy of Engineering, the National Academy of Sciences, and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.  

“Physics of Gas-Liquid Flows” leans heavily on contributions from the Hanratty laboratories. “The eye catching jacket was produced by James B. Young,” Hanratty said. “It captures trajectories of particles in a turbulent liquid flowing down a vertical pipe.” Cross-sections at several locations were illuminated by thin light sheets having different colors. Axial viewing photography was used to capture the paths of the particles; the color of a particle gives its axial location.

Cambridge University Press provides the following reviews of Hanratty’s book:

“This authoritative and impressive monograph, written by a widely acclaimed pioneer in this field, is an excellent resource for new students as well as seasoned practitioners. It develops concepts systematically and packages many decades of literature in this field lucidly, giving   readers a chance to understand and appreciate the evolution of this field.”

Sankaran Sundaresan, Princeton University

“Physics of Gas-Liquid Flows” is a must read for graduate students, researchers, and engineers seeking a solid basis or wanting to update their knowledge in the dynamics of gas-liquid systems. The book is an authoritative reference, mainly built around the results of the author, a leading expert in the field during several decades. It presents our current experimental and theoretical understanding at both the local and global scales with an original contribution to wave phenomena as they appear in film, stratified, and annular flows that may be a source of inspiration for researchers and teachers in the years to come.”

Jean Fabre, Institut National Polytechnique, Toulouse

“A lifetime of probing research and deep thinking about gas-liquid flows is enclosed between the covers of this book. Starting from simple analyses—the style of which will be familiar to many undergraduates—the author moves gradually to more advanced topics building a succinct yet exhaustive picture of the present understanding of these important flows. Practicing engineers and researchers alike will find many gems in this book.

Andrea Prosperetti, Johns Hopkins University