It is well known that the presence of entrained air bubbles in hydraulic oil can significantly reduce the effective bulk modulus of hydraulic oil. The effective bulk modulus of a mixture of oil and air as pressure changes is considerably different than when the oil and air are not mixed. Theoretical models have been proposed in the literature to simulate the pressure sensitivity of the effective bulk modulus of this mixture. However, limited amounts of experimental data are available to prove the validity of the models under various operating conditions. The major factors that affect pressure sensitivity of the effective bulk modulus of the mixture are the amount of air bubbles, their size and the distribution, and rate of compression of the mixture. An experimental apparatus was designed to investigate the effect of these variables on the effective bulk modulus of the mixture. The experimental results were compared with existing theoretical models, and it was found that the theoretical models only matched the experimental data under specific conditions. The purpose of this paper is to specify the conditions in which the current theoretical models can be used to represent the real behavior of the pressure sensitivity of the effective bulk modulus of the mixture. Additionally, a new theoretical model is proposed for situations where the current models fail to truly represent the experimental data.

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