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The pressure drop in pipes is incredibly important when designing a pump and to monitor safe plant operation. Being aware of the pressure drops taking place when transporting fluids in a process plant is extremely important when considering safety and effectiveness of plants. Pressure drops are due to the frictional forces acting between the pipe and the fluid. The frictional forces act in the opposite direction of the motion of the fluid. Pressure drops are especially high in areas such as filters and regulators.

A fluid can be described as laminar if the molecules in motion follow the fluid streamlines such that if a dye were to be introduced, the stream would remain coherent and would follow a single fluid streamline. A fluid is described as turbulent if the molecules in motion do not follow the fluid streamlines and therefore if a jet of dye were to be introduced, it would disperse through the action of irregular eddies (Robbins, 2017) . The transition between these two types of flow are due to growing instabilities. Viscous effects can reduce the effect of these instabilities allowing laminar flow to take place, but once the critical Reynold’s number is exceeded, the fluid transitions into turbulent flow. The critical Reynold’s number varies depending on the geometry of the pipe. For a circular pipe, a Reynold’s number of less than 2500 corresponds to laminar flow, a Reynold’s number of more than 3000 corresponds to turbulent flow and any values between 2000 and 4000 belong to the transitional regime (Robbins, 2017) .

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