Positron Emission Tomography (PET) for Flow Measurement
Positron Emission Tomography (PET) produces a three dimensional spatial distribution of positron-electron annihilations within an image volume. Various positron emitters are available for use in aqueous, organic and liquid metal flows. Preliminary experiments at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville (UTK) injected small flows of PET tracer into a bulk water flow in a four rod bundle. The trajectory and diffusion of the tracer in the bulk flow were then mapped using a PET scanner. A spatial resolution of 1.4 mm is achieved with current preclinical Micro-PET imaging equipment resulting in 200 MB 3D activity fields. A time resolved 3-D spatial activity profile was also measured. The PET imaging method is especially well suited to complex geometries where traditional optical methods such as LDV and PIV are difficult to apply. PET methods are uniquely useful for imaging in opaque fluids, opaque pressure boundaries, and multiphase studies. Several commercial and shareware Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) codes are currently used for science and engineering analysis and design. These codes produce detailed three dimensional flow predictions. The models produced by these codes are often difficult to validate. The development of this experimental technique offers a modality for the comparison of CFD outcomes with experimental data. Developed data sets from PET can be used in verification and validation exercises of simulation outcomes.
Riza Esa and Yanwen Wu
A. E. Ruggles et al., "Positron Emission Tomography (PET) for Flow Measurement", Advanced Materials Research, Vols. 301-303, pp. 1316-1321, 2011