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Journal of Materials
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 636507, 22 pages
Review Article

A Reconciliation of Packed Column Permeability Data: Column Permeability as a Function of Particle Porosity

The Wrangler Group LLC, 40 Nottinghill Road, Brighton, MA 02135, USA

Received 14 November 2013; Accepted 2 January 2014; Published 1 April 2014

Academic Editor: Carmen Alvarez-Lorenzo

Copyright © 2014 Hubert M. Quinn. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


In his textbook teaching of packed bed permeability, Georges Guiochon uses mobile phase velocity as the fluid velocity term in his elaboration of the Darcy permeability equation. Although this velocity frame makes a lot of sense from a thermodynamic point of view, it is valid only with respect to permeability at a single theoretical boundary condition. In his more recent writings, however, Guiochon has departed from his long-standing mode of discussing permeability in terms of the Darcy equation and has embraced the well-known Kozeny-Blake equation. In this paper, his teaching pertaining to the constant in the Kozeny-Blake equation is examined and, as a result, a new correlation coefficient is identified and defined herein based on the velocity frame used in his teaching. This coefficient correlates pressure drop and fluid velocity as a function of particle porosity. We show that in their experimental protocols, Guiochon et al. have not adhered to a strict material balance of permeability which creates a mismatch of particle porosity and leads to erroneous conclusions regarding the value of the permeability coefficient in the Kozeny-Blake equation. By correcting the experimental data to properly reflect particle porosity we reconcile the experimental results of Guiochon and Giddings, resulting in a permeability reference chart which is presented here for the first time. This reference chart demonstrates that Guiochon’s experimental data, when properly normalized for particle porosity and other related discrepancies, corroborates the value of 267 for the constant in the Kozeny-Blake equation which was derived by Giddings in 1965.