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Jan 2017

ITS Interview: Jiabin Jia

Building upon the excellent Tom Rodgers’ interview (which you can find here), is ITS’ latest user interview with another very talented engineer, Dr. Jiabin Jia. Dr. Jia, Lecturer in electrical engineering at the University of Edinburgh, is a well-respected figure in the world of process tomography. Known for his work with multiphase flow, we had the pleasure of sitting down with Dr. Jia to discuss his latest research:

Which tomography system do you use?Jiabin Jia

“I have been utilising electrical tomography for many years now. The instruments we purchased from ITS are the P2+ and the V5R, Electrical Resistance Tomography systems”.

How have you utilised our systems for your research?

“My main project using the V5R system was in collaboration with the chemical engineering department at the University of Edinburgh. When designing and manufacturing packed bed reactors the chemical engineering team had difficulties estimating CO2 distribution and incorporating carbon capture methods.

It is no secret that nuclear reactors generate carbon dioxide, which has lasting negative effects upon climate change and air quality. To minimalise waste CO2 entering the atmosphere carbon capture techniques are deployed. The main issue encountered by the chemical engineers at the University of Edinburgh was that they didn’t know which areas inside the reactor had the biggest build-up of carbon dioxide, thereby making them unsure where to best deploy the carbon captures.

The solution to this problem was to utilise the V5R system, as it provides real time CO2 distribution measurements, which allowed us to visualise and track precisely where the highest concentration of CO2 was congregating within the reactor. With this knowledge the team was able to design a reactor with much more effective CO2 obstructions.

Additionally, I’ve also used the V5R to do work for our industrial partner TUV NEL. I recently used to investigate oil and water two phase flow. Water is very conductive, which makes the V5R a very suitable instrument to handle highly conductive multiphase flow”.

What are the advantages of using tomography systems compared to other alternatives?

“The main alternative to tomography is gamma, which is too expensive; tomography is a lot cheaper and can be just as effective. Also, if we had a gamma system the health and safety people would be closely monitoring my lab; I like that ITS systems are safe and non-nuclear.

Furthermore, with gamma the reaction happens too fast, you gain a high resolution image but it doesn’t mean much. Because ideally, you want long term measuring and long term information so a single high resolution frame is not very useful when working with a chemical reactor”.

What literature have you published on your findings?
  • Jiabin Jia et al. (2010). A novel tomographic sensing system for high electrically conductive multiphase flow measurement. Flow Measurement and Instrumentation, 21(3), pp 184-190.
  • Mi, W., Jiabin Jia et al. (2015). A New Visualisation and Measurement Technology for Water Continuous Multiphase Flows. Flow Measurement and Instrumentation, 46(B), pp 204-218.
  • Jiabin Jia, et al. (2016). Effect of Packing and Liquid Conductivity on Gas Distribution and Holdup in Reaction Column. 2016 International Instrumentation and Measurement Technology Conference. Taipei, China, 23rd-26th May.

If, like Dr. Jiabin Jia, you would like to incorporate tomography into your research, why not contact us now to discuss your work with one of our team; simply send us an email, enquire online, or call +44 (0) 161 832 9297. And remember to keep checking back for the next ITS interview!