The problem of vapor/liquid interaction and entrainment in falling film evaporators is analyzed. Attention is focused primarily on horizontal tube falling film evaporators where liquid falls from one tube to the next in either a droplet or column mode. A criterion is presented for the onset of column formation, and equations are derived for the deflection of droplets and columns due to vapor crossflow. Based on an experimental study of drop detachment and breakup, a correlation is established for the resulting droplet sizes. For high vapor crossflow velocities, a criterion is presented for the inception of liquid entrainment by a process known as stripping. Based on the foregoing models, conditions are defined under which vapor/liquid interaction and entrainment are important for falling film evaporators.

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