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(8) : Minor Losses

Energy losses in pipe flows are the result of friction
between the fluid and the pipe walls and internal friction
between fluid particles. Minor (secondary) head losses
occur at any location in a pipe system where streamlines
are not straight, such as at pipe junctions, bends, valves,
contractions, expansions, and reservoir inlets and
outlets. In this experiment, minor head losses through a
pipe section that has several bends, transitions, and
fittings will be measured.
Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

To determine the loss factors for flow through a
range of pipe fittings including bends, a contraction, an
enlargement and a gate-valve.
Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

Energy Losses in Bends and Fittings Apparatus.
It consists of:
- Sudden Enlargement
- Sudden Contraction
- Long Bend
- Short Bend
- Elbow Bend figure 1:minor losses apparatus

- Mitre Bend
Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

Figure 2 : Schematic drawing of the energy-loss apparatus

Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

figure 3 : Minor Losses Apparatus with hydraulic bench

Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

 Apparatus: (Cont.)
 Flow rate through the circuit is controlled by a flow control
 Pressure tappings in the circuit are connected to a twelve bank
manometer, which incorporates an air inlet/outlet valve in the
top manifold. An air bleed screw facilitates connection to a
hand pump. This enables the levels in the manometer bank to
be adjusted to a convenient level to suit the system static
 A clamp which closes off the tappings to the mitre bend is
introduced when experiments on the valve fitting are required.
A differential pressure gauge gives a direct reading of losses
through the gate valve.
Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

The energy balance between two points in a pipe
can be described by the Bernoulli equation, given
by p V p 2
V 2
z 1
 z 
h2 2

 1
2g  2

where pi is static pressure (in Pa) at point i, g is

specific weight of the fluid (in N/m3), zi is the
elevation (in meters) of point i, Vi is the fluid
velocity (in m/s) at point i, g is the gravitational
constant (in m/s2), and hL is head loss (in meters).
Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

The term pi/ is referred to as the static head; zi is

the elevation head; and Vi2/2g is the dynamic (or
velocity) head. The summation of the static head
and the elevation head, pi/ + zi, is referred to as
the piezometric head. The piezometric head is
what is measured with the piezometer
(manometer) board on the apparatus for this
Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

Head loss, hL, includes the sum of pipe friction losses,

hf, and all minor losses, hL  h f   hi
i 1n

where hi is the minor head loss (in meters) for the ith
component and n is the number of components (fittings,
bends, etc.).
Pipe friction losses are expressed as the Darcy-Weisbach
equation given by h  f

D 2g

where f is a friction factor, L is the pipe length, and D is

the pipe diameter. Pipe friction losses are assumed to
be negligible in this experiment.
Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

The energy loss which occurs in a pipe fitting

(so-called secondary loss) is commonly expressed
in terms of a head loss (h, meters) in the form:
h  K
Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

Where K = the loss coefficient and

v = mean velocity of flow into the fitting, For the
expansion and contraction, the V used is the velocity of
the fluid in the smaller-diameter pipe.
Because of the complexity of flow in many fittings, K is
usually determined by experiment. For the pipe fitting
experiment, the head loss is calculated from two
manometer readings, taken before and after each fitting,
and K is then determined as V 2 
K  h / 
 2g 
Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

Due to the change in pipe cross-sectional area

through the enlargement and contraction, the
system experiences an additional change in static
pressure. This change can be calculated as
v1 / 2 g  v 2 / 2 g
2 2
Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

To eliminate the effect of this area change on

the measured head losses, this value should be
added to the head loss readings for the
enlargement and the contraction. Note that (h1 -
h2) will be negative for the enlargement and
v1 / 2 g  v2 / 2 g will
2 2
be negative for the
Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

For the gate valve experiment, pressure

difference before and after gate is measured
directly using a pressure gauge. This can then be
converted to an equivalent head loss using the
1 bar = 10.2 m water
Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

It is not possible to make measurements on all fittings
simultaneously and, therefore, it is necessary to run two
separate tests.

o Part A:
1) Set up the losses apparatus on the hydraulic bench so that
its base is horizontal by adjusting the feet on the base plate
if necessary. (this is necessary for accurate height
measurements from the manometers). Connect the test rig
inlet to the bench flow supply and run the outlet extension
tube to the volumetric tank and secure it in place.
Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

Procedure: (Cont. part A)

2) Fully open the gate valve and the outlet flow
control valve at the right hand end of the apparatus.
3) Close the bench flow control valve then start the
service pump.
4) Gradually open the bench flow control valve and
allow the pipework to fill with water until all air
has been expelled from the pipework.
Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

Procedure: (Cont. part A)

5) In order to bleed air from pressure tapping points and the
manometers close both the bench valve and the test rig flow
control valve and open the air bleed screw and remove the
cap from the adjacent air valve. Connect a length of small
bore tubing from the air valve to the volumetric tank. Now,
open the bench valve and allow flow through the
manometers to purge all air from them; then, tighten the air
bleed screw and partly open both the bench valve and the
test rig flow control valve.
Next, open the air bleed screw slightly to allow air to enter
the top of the manometers, re-tighten the screw when the
manometer levels reach a convenient height.
Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

Procedure: (Cont. part A)

6) Check that all manometer levels are on scale at the
maximum volume flow rate required
(approximately 17 liters/ minute). These levels can
be adjusted further by using the air bleed screw and
the hand pump supplies. The air bleed screw
controls the air flow through the air valve, so when
using the hand pump, the bleed screw must be
open. To retain the hand pump pressure in the
system, the screw must be closed after pumping.
Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

Procedure: (Cont. part A)

7) If the levels in the manometer are too high then the hand
pump can be used to pressurise the top manifold. All levels
will decrease simultaneously but retain the appropriate
If the levels are too low then the hand pump should be
disconnected and the air bleed screw opened briefly to
reduce the pressure in the top manifold. Alternatively the
outlet flow control valve can be closed to raise the static
pressure in the system which will raise all levels
If the level in any manometer tube is allowed to drop too
low then air will enter the bottom manifold. If the level in
any manometer tube is too high then water will enter the top
manifold and flow into adjacent tubes.
Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

Procedure: (Cont. part A)

8) Adjust the flow from the bench control valve and, at a
given flow rate, take height readings from all of the
manometers after the levels have steadied. In order to
determine the volume flow rate, you should carry out a
timed volume collection using the volumetric tank. This
is achieved by closing the ball valve and measuring
(with a stopwatch) time taken to accumulate a known
volume of fluid in the tank, which is read from the sight
glass. You should collect fluid for at least one minute to
minimize timing errors. ( note: valve should be kept
fully open.)
Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

Procedure: (Cont. part A)

9) Repeat this procedure to give a total of at least five sets
of measurements over a flow range from approximately
8 - 17 liters per minute.
Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

o Part B:
10) Clamp off the connecting tubes to the mitre bend pressure
tappings (to prevent air being drawn into the system).
11) Start with the gate valve closed and open fully both the
bench valve and the lest rig flow control valve.
12) open the gate valve by approximately 50% of one turn
(after taking up any backlash).
Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

Procedure: (Cont. part B)

13) For each of at least 5 flow rates, measure pressure drop
across the valve from the pressure gauge; adjust the flow
rate by use of the test rig flow control valve. Once
measurements have started, do not adjust the gale valve.
Determine the volume flow rate by timed collection.
14) Repeat this procedure for the gate valve opened by
approximately 70% of one turn and then approximately 80%
of one turn.
Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

Data & Results:

The following dimensions from the equipment are used in the
appropriate calculations.

Internal diameter of pipework d = 0.0183 m

Internal diameter of pipework at enlargement outlet and

contraction inlet
d = 0.0240 m
Exp. (8) : Minor Losses

Data & Results:


Minor Losses (excel)