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# 14: Pressure Losses 1 printed 29May08

Chapter 14
Predicting Pressure Losses
A. A Primer on Energy and Pressure Losses
B. Energy Losses from Hood or Duct Entry
C. Selecting a Duct Velocity
D. Selecting the Duct Size and Material
E. Energy Losses from Friction in Straight Ducts
F. An Example of Hood Entry and Duct Friction Losses
G. Turbulence in Duct Fittings
H. Losses from Elbows
I. Losses from Duct Contractions
J. Losses from Duct Expansions
K. Comparing Contraction and Expansion Losses
L. Energy Losses in Branched Duct Systems
M. Using an LEV Design Worksheet
14: Pressure Losses 2 printed 29May08
The learning goals of Chapter 14:
G Know that moving air causes friction. Expanding air flow causes turbulence. Both
cause pressure losses.
G Know that most pressure losses are proportional to Velocity Pressure (and
therefore to V and Q).
G Know that individual losses add cumulatively to the resulting total losses on either
side of the fan.
N Understand what a vena contracta is and how it relates to pressure losses.
G Know how to find the recommended V
transport
in a VS diagram and to pick a generic
value. Be familiar with the ranges of generic values.
N Be able to find a hood entry loss factor (esp. in a VS diagram and for a generic
hood or duct adaptor) and to use it to calculate a hood entry loss.
Be able to calculate straight duct friction losses using either a tabular method or
a formula method.
N Be able to find and use loss factors for elbows, contractions, and expansions.
N Be broadly familiar with the blast gate and design methods to balance a branched
duct system (calculating such a balance is too time-consuming for in-class exams).
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14: Pressure Losses 4 printed 29May08
A Primer on Energy and Pressure Losses
1. In ventilation, pressure is energy, and pressure losses are energy losses.
Flow results from a difference in static pressures [SP]. Principles #5,6&8
If there are no losses ("ideal flow"), then Total P and TP are constant.
Total P
before the fan
= P
before the fan
+ VP
before the fan

TP
before the fan
= SP
before the fan
+ VP
before the fan

N And Ideal VP
before the fan
= !SP
before the fan
(reworded Eqn. 11.15)
2. Friction and turbulence in flowing air cause energy losses. Principle #9
!SP
before the fan
= Real VP
before the fan
+ GLosses
since entry
(Eqn. 11.15)
used in design as Eqn. 14.6
or
Real VP
before the fan
= !SP
before the fan
! G Losses
since entry
Eqn. 14.1a
or
N Real VP
before the fan
= Ideal VP
before the fan
! G Losses
since entry
Eqn. 14.1b
However, during design we know our desired "Real VP" but not the "Ideal VP."
14: Pressure Losses 5 printed 29May08
A Primer on Energy and Pressure Losses
1. In ventilation, pressure is energy, and pressure losses are energy losses.
Flow results from a difference in static pressures [SP]. Principles #5,6&8
If there are no losses ("ideal flow"), then Total P and TP are constant.
Total P
before the fan
= P
before the fan
+ VP
before the fan

TP
before the fan
= SP
before the fan
+ VP
before the fan

N And Ideal VP
before the fan
= !SP
before the fan
(reworded Eqn. 11.15)
2. Friction and turbulence in flowing air cause energy losses. Principle #9
!SP
before the fan
= Real VP
before the fan
+ GLosses
since entry
(Eqn. 11.15)
used in design as Eqn. 14.6
or
Real VP
before the fan
= !SP
before the fan
! G Losses
since entry
Eqn. 14.1a
or
N Real VP
before the fan
= Ideal VP
before the fan
! G Losses
since entry
Eqn. 14.1b
However, during design we know our desired "Real VP" but not the "Ideal VP."
14: Pressure Losses 6 printed 29May08
Imagine real flow through a "soda straw" or "garden hose"
How fast you can drink soda through a straw depends upon
how hard you suck [!SP],
how long the straw is,
how wide the straw is, and
if the straw is bent or pinched.
! SP
VP % ))))))))))))))))
1 + resistance to flow
Eqn. 14.2a
How fast water will flow through a garden hose depends upon
the water pressure [+SP],
how long the hose is,
how narrow the hose is, and
if the hose is bent or pinched.
+ SP
VP % )))))))))))))
resistance to flow
Eqn. 14.2b
14: Pressure Losses 7 printed 29May08
Equation 14.2 is conceptually important but useless in ventilation design.
V ! SP + SP
VP = )))) % ))))))))))) or ))))))))

4005 1 + resistance resistance
Eqn. 14.2
In design, Q, V, and VP are known, but initially resistance to flow (losses)
and SP are unknown.
Losses need to be predicted at the desired Q, V, and VP in order to be able
to chose a fan that can create the necessary SP to protect employees.
3. Equation 14.4 is the predictive relationship for that is used in design.
energy or pressure loss = LossFactor (VP or )VP)
Eqn. 10.1 & 14.4
Each energy loss is proportional to the local VP (not subtracted from it).
each energy or pressure loss % VP % V % Q
Eqn. 14.5
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4. In ventilation, energy losses (per Eqn. 14.4) are caused by two mechanisms
that occur predictably at certain points
a. Turbulence at duct entry and at some hood faces.
b. Wall friction in straight ducts (both before and after the fan).
c. Turbulence (and a little friction) in elbows, transitions (expansions and
contractions), branch junctions, and air cleaners.
5. Each of the above losses are additive.
Cumulative losses are subtracted from P
inside
P
ambient
! P
inside
= !SP
before fan
= VP
before fan
+ G Losses
since entry
Eqn. 14.6a
sucking summed losses
P
inside
! P
ambient
= SP
after fan
= G Losses
until exit
Eqn. 14.6c
blowing summed losses
6. All the lost energy is made up by the fan ("FanSP" = G Losses

, Eqn. 16.6)
and Chapter 17 will show that fan power (energy/time) = Q "FanTP".
14: Pressure Losses 9 printed 29May08
Energy Losses from Hood and Duct Entry
1. Turbulence losses always occur downstream from a "vena contracta."
A vena contracta is a region of excessive convergence of air flow due
to its inward inertia upon entering a hood, a duct, or a contraction.
Within a hood's vena contracta, the flow area < A
face
and V > Q/A
face
.
A virtual vena contracta occurs when a duct wall diverges from the air's
flow faster than its inertia allows it to follow, e.g., within a duct
expansion (sec. 14.IX) and on the inner wall of an elbow (sec. 14.VII).

The unconstrained recovery of excess VP back into P always has losses
due to turbulence.
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2. An entry loss always occurs where air enters into a duct ("duct entry").
simple hood entry loss = h
entry loss
= LossFactor
duct entry
VP
duct
Eqn. 14.7
Plain duct LossFactor
hood
= 0.93 Flanged duct LossFactor
hood
= 0.49.
45 taper LossFactor
hood
= 0.15 for a round
taper & 0.25 for a rectangular taper.
Bell-mouth
LossFactor
hood
= 0.03
14: Pressure Losses 11 printed 29May08
tapered hood or duct entry which is also on the
will vary with the taper angle. ABIH exam sheet.)
major
angle
taper
angle hood type
Loss
Factor
hood
C
e
!
45
90
120
180
360
!
22.5
45
60
90
0
rounded lip (bell mouth)
tapered lip hood
tapered lip hood
tapered lip hood
flanged hood or duct end
unflanged duct end
0.03
0.15
0.25
0.35
0.50
0.93
0.98
0.93
0.89
0.86
0.82
0.72
cf., the loss factor in a slotted hood = 1.8 VP
slot
.
Obsolete C
e
= "coefficient of entry."
LossFactor
hood
= (1/C
e
) ! 1 = (1 ! C
e
)/C
e

## 14: Pressure Losses 12

4. Losses from "compound hoods" follow the same
14: Pressure Losses 13 printed 29May08
principle at each step and are additive, i.e., the total loss is the sum of each
independent loss.
h
entry
= (LossFactor
loc. #1
VP
1
) + (LossFactor
loc, #2
VP
2
)

For example, the entry loss from a slotted hood are calculated using
Eqn. 14.8 (also in the Manual's Fig. 5-15).
h
entry
= (LossFactor
slot
VP
slot
)
+ (LossFactor
duct entry
VP
duct
)
h
slotted hood
= 1.8VP
slot
+ 0.25VP
duct

with 45 taper
14: Pressure Losses 14
14: Pressure Losses 15 printed 29May08
Selecting a Duct Velocity
Four sources of guidance for an appropriate duct velocity (V
duct
)
1. "Minimum design duct velocity" in most Manual VS diagrams. *
2. "Minimum design duct velocity" in the Manual's "Miscellaneous
Operations" Table 10.99.2. *
3. A very few OSHA standards (e.g., grinding, polishing, and buffing).
4. Generic minimum V
duct
recommendations (Table 14.2)
1000 - 2000 fpm for non-industrial dust.
2000 - 2500 fpm for very fine dusts (e.g., fumes).
2500 - 3000 fpm for fine, low density dusts (e.g., cotton lint).
3000 - 3500 fpm for dry dust or powder (e.g., wood shavings).
3500 - 4000 fpm for average industrial dusts (e.g., stone).
4000 - 4500 fpm for heavy dusts (e.g., metal turnings, sand).
> 4500 fpm for large or damp dusts (e.g., chunks).
* purported to be capable not only of keeping solid contaminants suspended but
also of re-entraining settled debris.
14: Pressure Losses 16 printed 29May08
Table 14.2 has more but narrower ranges of generic V
duct
than the generic
V
control
values in Table 13.1 but is used in similar circumstances.
Choose the velocity range based upon the size and nature of the contaminant.
Choose within the range based upon
the toxicity of the contaminant (a slightly higher V will reduce the
likelihood that maintenance workers will have to unclog a duct).
cost effectiveness that balances
the high purchase costs of large, low-speed ducts versus
the high losses and power costs of small (cheaper), high-speed ducts.
(Engineers might conduct a formal "economic optimization" for a large project.)
the impact of noise from VP
duct
on nearby occupants
1000-2000 fpm to stay < NC-30 or NC-35 in a classroom or office.
4000 fpm generates about 45 dBA (low noise manufacturing).
6000 fpm generates about 60 dBA (typical practical upper V
duct
limit).
dBA increases about 15-18 dBA for each doubling of V
duct
.
14: Pressure Losses 17 printed 29May08
Selecting the Duct Size and Material
1. The actual V
duct
equals the Q divided by a commercially available duct area.
Q (previously designed)
a. maximum duct A = )))))))))))))))))) Eqn. 14.9
minimum design velocity
4 max. duct A
b. maximum diameter = sqrt )))))))))))) Eqn. 14.10a
B
c. Select the next smallest "available" duct diameter (see Tab. 14.5 or 14.6).
B (selected duct D)
d. Calculate the selected duct A = )))))))))))))))) Eqn. 14.10b
4
Q
e. Calculate the actual duct V = ))))))))))) Eqn. 14.10c
selected duct A
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2. Selecting the duct material is rarely a strictly IH decision.
Get help when you need it (see Chap. 7).
a. PVC resists corrosion, is cheapest, but is limited to preformed sizes,
to round shapes, and to temperatures # 175F and possibly by local fire
or building codes.
b. Galvanized sheet metal can be custom fabricated, resists corrosion and
heat # 400F, and is neither flammable nor too expensive. The IBC
specifies minimum sheet metal thicknesses.
c. Carbon steel is thicker and thus good for abrasive contaminants, but it
is more expensive.
d. Stainless steel is good for corrosive contaminants and/or hot gases to
1500F but is even more expensive.
Other duct materials such as FRP (fibrous-glass reinforced polystyrene) are
available and more materials will probably become available.
14: Pressure Losses 19 printed 29May08
Energy Losses from Friction in Straight Ducts
Old method to predict loss [h
duct friction
] was based on D'Arcy-Weisbach equation.
Duct Length
h
duct friction
= friction factor ))))))))))) VP Eqn. 14.11a
Duct Diameter
where
friction factor = from Moody diagram (Fig. 12.15) based on roughness.
Duct Length = duct length in feet (or 100's of feet).
Duct Diameter = duct diameter in feet or inches.
VP = velocity pressure, "wg.
Newer Loeffler equation in 3 forms
1. ACGIH Loeffler (coefs. in a table).
2. tabulated loss factors.
3. coefficients inside Loeffler equation
using only D and VP.
14: Pressure Losses 20 printed 29May08
1. Loeffler equation (in the ACGIH Manual)
a V
b

h
duct friction
= ))))) Length VP Eqn. 14.12
Q
c
where
Length = duct length in feet.
VP = the air's velocity pressure, "wg.
V = duct air velocity, ft/min or fpm.
Q = air volumetric flow rate, cfm.
a, b, c = coefficients read from Table 14.4.
Table 14.4 Coefficients for the duct friction loss factor in Eqn. 14.12.
Duct Material a b c
Aluminum, black iron, stainless steel, PVC 0.0425 0.465 0.602
Galvanized sheet metal 0.0307 0.533 0.612
Flexible duct, fabric covered wires 0.0311 0.604 0.639
14: Pressure Losses 21 printed 29May08
2. Tabulated values of the LossFactor
friction
derived from the Loeffler equation
for round ducts
Table 14.5 for PVC, aluminum, or welded (smooth seams). next page
Table 14.6 for galvanized sheet metal (raised seams between sections).
a. Find the duct diameter (inches) in the left column.
(Note the duct areas in the next column are calculated for you in ft.)
b. Move across to the column(s) with the appropriate duct V (fpm).
friction
as a fraction of VP per foot of duct length.
(Interpolation is necessary for the large changes between small duct diameters.)
d. Calculate h
duct friction
= LossFactor
friction
Length VP Eqn. 14.13
14: Pressure Losses 22 printed 29May08
excerpt from Table 14.5. Loss factors for black iron, aluminum, stainless steel, and
PVC ducts. In use h
duct friction
["wg] = LossFactor
friction
Length VP.
Duct
Diameter
inches
Round
Duct
Area
sq ft
Duct Velocity in feet per minute [fpm]
1000 2000 3000 4000 5000 6000
4 0.0873 0.0716 0.0651 0.0616 0.0592 0.0574 0.0560
4.5 0.110 0.0621 0.0565 0.0535 0.0514 0.0498 0.0486
5 0.136 0.0547 0.0498 0.0471 0.0453 0.0439 0.0428
5.5 0.165 0.0488 0.0444 0.0420 0.0404 0.0391 0.0382
6 0.196 0.0440 0.0400 0.0378 0.0364 0.0353 0.0344
7 0.267 0.0365 0.0332 0.0314 0.0302 0.0293 0.0286
8 0.349 0.0311 0.0283 0.0267 0.0257 0.0249 0.0243
9 0.442 0.0270 0.0245 0.0232 0.0223 0.0216 0.0211
10 0.545 0.0238 0.0216 0.0204 0.0197 0.0191 0.0186
11 0.660 0.0212 0.0193 0.0182 0.0175 0.0170 0.0166
14: Pressure Losses 23 printed 29May08
3. Simplified Loeffler equation that has just D (for round ducts), L, and VP and
the coefficients built in (cf., Q, V, VP, and separate a, b, and c in Eqn. 14.12).
For PVC or other smooth ducts
0.314
h
duct friction
= ))))))))) Length [ft] VP
0.9315
Eqn. 14.14a
D [inch]
1.204

For galvanized ducts
0.387
h
duct friction
= ))))))))) Length [ft] VP
0.9605
Eqn. 14.14b
D [inch]
1.224
For covered-wire flex duct
0.650
h
duct friction
= ))))))))) Length [ft] VP
0.9825
Eqn. 14.14c
D [inch]
1.278

Note that the power on VP is only . 1.
14: Pressure Losses 24 printed 29May08
4. The prediction of h
duct friction
using D, L, and Q is presented just FYI.
For PVC or other smooth ducts
0.00100
h
duct friction
= ))))))))) L [ft] Q [cfm]
1.863

D [inch]
4.930
Eqn. 14.15a
For galvanized ducts
0.00103
h
duct friction
= ))))))))) L [ft] Q [cfm]
1.921

D [inch]
5.066
Eqn. 14.15b
Note that the power on D . 5.
and the power on Q . 2 (similar to V).
14: Pressure Losses 25 printed 29May08
5. Predicting h
duct friction
in "other than round" ducts
Equivalent duct diameter [D
equivalent
] = the diameter of a round duct with
the same friction loss as a duct that is shaped "other than round."
(H W)
0.625
(Area)
0.625

D
equivalent
= 1.3 ))))))))) = 1.546 )))))))))) Eqn. 14.16
(H + W)
0.25
(Perimeter)
0.25

Example: Find D
equivalent
for a 18" x 8" rectangle (a 3:1 "aspect ratio"):
(188)
0.625
(144)
0.625

D
equivalent
= 1.546 ))))))))) = 1.546 )))))) using Eqn. 14.16b
(2[18+8])
0.25
(52)
0.25

22.33
= 1.546 ))))) = 12.9 inch diameter.
2.685
D
equivalent
may be used in the methods shown to derive h
duct friction
.
Table 14.7 shows that losses in square ducts are 4% > losses in round ducts,
but losses in more oblong ducts (a higher aspect ratio) can be 10-20% >.
14: Pressure Losses 26 printed 29May08
An Example of Hood Entry and Duct Friction Losses
Control titanium dioxide powder in a bag emptying operation.
Steps from Section 10.III
0. Consider non-ventilation options.
1. Determine V
control
from options in sec. 13.II
a. VS-50-10 shows a booth hood with Q = 150 cfm / ft face.
b. The only slightly relevant Miscellaneous Operation in the Manual's
Table 10.99.2 is 250 fpm for dumping asbestos.
c. Generic recommendations in Table 13.1 for moderate activity lists
100-200 fpm.
2. Select, design, and locate the hood.
a. Containment "not" feasible because of bag size and manual handling.
b. VS-50-10 booth face might need to be 2.25 ft wide 4 ft high.
14: Pressure Losses 27 printed 29May08

14: Pressure Losses 28 printed 29May08
Step
3. Estimate the flow rate of air [Q] to be moved.
Q (in VS-50-10) = "150 cfm / ft face"
Q = 150 2.25 4 = 1350 cfm.
VS-50-10 also specifies
a 45 tapered fitting to the duct, leading (in step #7) to
h
e
= 0.25 VP
d
as shown in the VS diagram or
h
entry
= 0.25 VP
duct
and
a minimum duct velocity = 3500 fpm.
14: Pressure Losses 29 printed 29May08
Step
4. Select the duct material, pathway, and size.
The contaminant (TiO
2
) is
not corrosive, meaning galvanized sheet metal ducting is OK.
not combustible, meaning PVC is OK (check building codes).
PVC ducting is
cheaper
PVC cost = 1.0 D
1.05
= 18.4 . \$8.50 per ft.
Galvanized cost = 2.7 D
0.8
= 2.75.3 . \$14 per ft.
and smoother (it has lower frictional pressure losses).
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The pathway (in this case) can go out the back of the hood, straight up and out
through the roof, but has to enter the centrifugal fan from the side and rise
above the wind turbulence zone on the roof.
14: Pressure Losses 31 printed 29May08
The duct diameter must be small enough to maintain V
duct
> the 3500 fpm
minimum duct design velocity recommended within VS-50-10.
Q
to protect employees
1350 cfm
a. A
max duct
= )))))))))))) = ))))))) = 0.3857 ft
2
.
V
minimum duct velocity
3500 fpm
4 0.3857
b. maximum duct D = sqrt ))))))) = 0.700 ft = 8.4 inches.
B
c. Select next smallest prefabricated duct = 8 inch diameter (Tab. 14.5).
d. Actual duct A = B 8
2
/ 4 = 50.27 inch
2
= 0.3491 ft
2
.
Q 1350 cfm
e. Actual duct V = )) = ))))))) = 3867 fpm.
A 0.3491 ft
2
Step
5. Determine air cleaning requirements (assume none as a classroom prerogative).
6. Provide for make-up air (assume that in this setting there is no resistance to the
flow of make-up air, so we will have no "additional losses").
14: Pressure Losses 32 printed 29May08
Step
7. Calculate all the energy (pressure) losses for the system.
a. All losses are based on the local VP. In this system, all VP = VP
duct
.
3867
2

VP
duct
= )))) = 0.932 "wg.
4005
b. Hood entry losses in VS-50-10 = 0.25 VP
d
for a 45 tapered "duct entry".
h
duct entry loss
= LossFactor
hood
VP
duct
= 0.25 0.932 = 0.23 "wg.
The following just demonstrates that the VP and loss as air enters the
booth is negligible (this booth comprises a "simple hood").
LossFactor
plain hood
= 0.93 from either Figure 14.1 or Table 14.1.
VP
at 150 fpm
= 0.0014 "wg
h
entry
= 0.93 (0.0014) = 0.0013 Owg << 0.23 Owg!
14: Pressure Losses 33 printed 29May08
c. All duct friction loss for the entire length of equal size
ducting could be calculated at once, rather than
calculating the loss in each section separately.
using Eqn. 14.12 (ACGIH Loeffler)
aV
b
0.0425 3867
0.465
h
duct friction
= ))) LVP = )))))))))))) 33 (0.932) = 0.794 "wg
Q
c
1350
0.602
using Eqn. 14.13 and Table 14.5 (with interpolation for 3867 fpm)
h
duct friction
= LossFactor
fric.
L VP = 0.0258 33 0.932 = 0.794 "wg
using Eqn. 14.14a (the simplified Loeffler equation)
0.314 0.314
h
duct friction
= )))) LVP
0.9315
= )))) 33 0.932
0.9315
= 0.794 "wg
D
1.204
8
1.204

FYI: Galvanized ducting would have resulted in h
duct friction
= 0.94 "wg.
14: Pressure Losses 34 printed 29May08
d. Each elbow loss = 0.14 wg (to be explained in section VIII).
e. The losses in each segment are additive. Thus,
0.23 "wg = hood entry loss
+ 0.79 "wg = loss in all of the straight ducts
+ 0.28 "wg = loss in the two elbows
)))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))
= 1.30 "wg = total predicted system loss.
Step
8. Select a fan that will move Q = 1350 cfm
against a total pressure loss (resistance or FanSP) of 1.3 "wg.
(fans to be covered in Chapter 16)
14: Pressure Losses 35 printed 29May08
Turbulence in Duct Fittings
General concepts of turbulence within ducts
1. The primary cause of turbulence is the expansion of either a real or a virtual
vena contracta. Recall that a vena contracta is a region of excessive convergence
of air flow due to its inertia.

2. Losses are proportional either to VP or to )VP = *VP
2
! VP
1
*.
Loss factors are tabulated for
elbows (bends in a round or rectangular duct) sec. VIII
expansions and contractions (tapered or abrupt) sec. IX-X
branch junctions (where two ducts join into one). sec. XII
14: Pressure Losses 36 printed 29May08
3. The "taper angle" [""] can be designed (chosen) in a new system but
needs to be measured in an existing system.
In design
(D
1
! D
2
) / 2
"" = tan
-1
)))))))))))))
taper length on 6
In the field (e.g., when measuring
a transition "as built")
(D
1
! D
2
) / 2
"" = sin
-1
))))))))))))
taper wall length
The angles that result from using the wrong lengths don't differ much until > 45.
14: Pressure Losses 37 printed 29May08
Losses from Elbows
1. Losses from elbows are
partly due to wall friction but
mostly due to turbulence (a virtual "vena contracta").
h
elbow
= LossFactor
elbow
VP
elbow
Eqn. 14.18
2. LossFactor
elbow
increases as the elbow gets more abrupt (fewer pieces) and
its turn gets tighter (a smaller R/D ratio).
smooth 5-piece 4-piece 3-piece 2-piece
"mitered"
14: Pressure Losses 38 printed 29May08
LossFactor
elbow
in a round duct (Fig. 14.13) depends upon its R/D ratio and
its construction (number of pieces)
where
R = the "radius of curvature" (through the duct's 6)
D = the duct's diameter.
A good R/D . 2.
LossFactor
mitered elbow
= 1.2
14: Pressure Losses 39 printed 29May08
Example: Find the loss in a stamped round PVC elbow with an
R/D = 1.5 in the 8 inch D duct used in Example #14.2.
h
elbow
= LossFactor
elbow
VP = 0.15 0.932 = 0.14 "wg.
14: Pressure Losses 40 printed 29May08
3. An elbow in a round duct causes swirling in the air downstream.
The asymmetric flow downstream for 8 to 10 duct diameters implies
a. Much of the turbulence loss actually occurs downstream of the elbow.
b. Avoid conducting a velocity traverse within 8 to 10 duct diameters
downstream of an elbow.
c. Avoid placing a fan within 8 to 10 diameters.
If you can't avoid, either use turning vanes (Fig. 10.10) or compensate for
reduced fan performance (treated as if it were more loss in Section 16.F.2).
14: Pressure Losses 41 printed 29May08
4. LossFactor
elbow
in a rectangular duct (Fig. 14.15) depends upon its R/D ratio
and its W/D ratio (width-to-depth or "aspect ratio" within the turn).
14: Pressure Losses 42 printed 29May08
The loss factor for an elbow in a rectangular duct can be less than for an
elbow in a round duct, depending upon its R/D and orientation
for R/D = 1.5 for R/D = 2.5
Aspect
Ratio
LossFactor
elbow

%
savings
LossFactor
elbow

%
savings
rect. round rect. round
0.5 0.18 0.15 -20% 0.15 0.12 -25%
1 0.13 0.15 13% 0.11 0.12 8%
2 0.13 0.15 13% 0.11 0.12 8%
3 0.12 0.15 20% 0.10 0.12 17%
but the savings are not enough to bias a decision to use rectangular ducts (e.g.,
their larger losses in Table 14.7).
14: Pressure Losses 43 printed 29May08
5. Assume that the loss in a less-than right-angle "bend" is proportional to the
"bend's" fraction of 90, e.g., the loss in a 30 bend is one-third of the loss
in a 90 elbow.
6. Losses in "flex-duct" are not well quantified,
and they vary with its bends (which are not
fixed).
The elbows of flex-ducts are susceptible to
abrasion or corrosion and are difficult to
reinforce.
14: Pressure Losses 44 printed 29May08
Losses from Duct Contractions
Contractions have a smaller vena contracta than expansions.
1. Losses in tapered contractions equal LossFactor )VP.
Loss = LossFactor
tapered contr.
(VP
2
! VP
1
) = LossFactor )VP
LossFactors for tapered contractions are based only on taper angle [].

Manual lists "L" for gradual contractions and "K" for abrupt contractions.
14: Pressure Losses 45 printed 29May08
2. Losses in abrupt contractions equal LossFactor VP
downstream
.
Loss = LossFactor
abrupt contr.
VP
2
Eqn. 14.20
LossFactors can be based on either the area or the diameter ratio.

Note that the largest LossFactor
abrupt cont.
= flanged duct LossFactor
entry
.
14: Pressure Losses 46 printed 29May08
Losses from Duct Expansions A virtual vena contracta.

1. Losses in expansions equal LossFactor )VP.
Loss = LossFactor
expansion
(VP
1
! VP
2
) = LossFactor )VP
LossFactors for expansions are based on taper angle [] and D
2
/D
1
.
4 is optimum but way too shallow to be practical.
Manual lists pressure regain factor "R." LossFactor
expansion
= 1 ! R.
14: Pressure Losses 47 printed 29May08
2. An vas can be used to regain some excess VP at the end of a duct before
all the VP is "lost" into the surrounding atmosphere.
However, the cost to install an vas is not justified for V
outlet
< 5000 fpm.
These aren't really vass, but an vas would look like these outward
tapered furnace exhaust stacks near the center of this picture.
14: Pressure Losses 48 printed 29May08
In an vas
Regain is equivalent to a "negative loss" (the portion of VP that is not lost).
Regain from an vas equals RegainFactor VP
entering
.
Regain = ! RegainFactor
expansion
VP
1

Eqn. 14.22
RegainFactor is based on the L/D ratio and the diameter ratio.
14: Pressure Losses 49 printed 29May08
Comparing Contraction and Expansion Losses
1. Find the total losses for two abrupt transitions
Always mentally divide a system into a series of "designable" segments,
e.g., 1 to 2 = a 8" to 4" abrupt duct contraction.
2 to 3 = one foot of 4" diameter straight duct.
3 to 4 = a 4" to 8" abrupt duct expansion.
Solve for the loss in each segment,
Use a \$ ratio to find LossFactor
contraction
and help convert VP units
\$
contraction
= D
2
/D
1
= 4/8 = 0.5 (the "ratio" in Fig. 14.17b)
\$ = A
2
/A
1
= 0.25 (the "ratio" in Fig. 14.17a)
V
2
= V
1
A
1
/ A
2
= \$
-2
V
1
or V
4
VP
2
= VP
1
/ \$
4
= \$
-4
VP
1
or VP
4

14: Pressure Losses 50 printed 29May08
For the segment from 1 to 2
h
Loss
= LossFactor VP
2
= 0.44 VP
2

For segment 2 to 3
h
friction
= 0.39 L (VP
2
)
0.96
/ D
1.22

h
friction
= 0.39 1 (VP
1
)
0.96
/ 4
1.22
. 0.072 VP
2
For segment 3 to 4
\$expansion = D
4
/D
3
= 2; \$
2
= 4; \$
4
= 16 ; \$
-4
= 0.0625
h
Loss
= LossFactor (VP
3
! VP
4
) = LossFactor (1 ! \$
-4
)VP
3
h
Loss
= 0.60 (1 ! 0.0625) VP
3
= 0.56 VP
2

Total losses = (0.44 + 0.072 + 0.56) VP
2
. 1.07 VP
2
or ~ 17VP
1
.
14: Pressure Losses 51 printed 29May08
2. Find the losses for two tapered transitions (like a venturi with a
4 inch wide 1 foot long throat)
Again envision three segments,
For segment from 1 to 2
= tan
-1
[(8 !4)/2/6)] = tan
-1
[0.333] = 18
h
Loss
= LossFactor (VP
2
! VP
1
) = LossFactor (1 ! \$
4
)VP
2

= 0.10 (1 ! 0.0625) VP
2
. 0.094 VP
2
For segment 2 to 3, h
friction
. 0.072 VP
2
exactly as before.
For segment 3 to 4, = the same 18
h
Loss
= LossFactor (VP
3
! VP
4
) = LossFactor (1 ! \$
-4
) VP
3
h
Loss
= 0.50 (1 ! 0.0625) VP
3
= 0.469 VP
2

Total losses = (0.094 + 0.072 + 0.469) VP
2
= 0.635 VP
2
or ~ 10VP
1
.
14: Pressure Losses 52 printed 29May08
3. Comparison of the losses in these two examples:
based on (high) VP
2
Abrupt Tapered
Contraction 0.44 VP
2
0.09 VP
2
Expansion 0.56 VP
2
0.47 VP
2
Total loss 1.07 VP
2
0.625 VP
2
In reality, when two turbulence-generating features are co-located or
closely spaced, their losses are typically less than additive. As a result, a
properly built venturi meter (more tapered than above) would lose only
14: Pressure Losses 53 printed 29May08
Energy Losses in Branched Duct Systems
Cheaper to run
multiple hoods
with one fan.
1. Three keys to understanding branched duct systems
a. Losses in branches happen in parallel. Losses are additive within each
branch, but they do not add to each other.
SP
in each branch
% Q 3LossFactors
in each branch
b. The SPs of all branches at a junction will always be equal.
Since SP = !(VP + Eloss), and losses % VP % V % Q
Q will be too high in the branch with less than expected losses.
Q will be too low in the branch with more than expected losses. ;
c. The actual Loss
"branch junction"
occurs just downstream of the junction.
14: Pressure Losses 54 printed 29May08
2. Options to "balance" the flow in branched systems (to get the flow where
you want it)
a. Blast-gate method
1) Put a blast gate (Fig. 10.11) in each branch; preferably lockable.
2) Adjust after installation. Open all blast gates; then beginning farthest
from the fan, close each blast gate enough to get its desired flow.
b. Balance-by-design method (or the "static pressure balance method")
1) Make iterative calculations during design beginning farthest from the
fan. First, increase the loss in the low-loss branch, then decrease the
loss in the high-loss branch while keeping adequate V
transport
until
the predicted SP at the junction is equal (e.g., within 20%). Vary
a) the duct diameters (recall losses % about D
5
in Eqn. 14.15)
b) the duct entry taper angles, or
2) Repeat the above process at each junction.
c. Plenum method (not recommended) Bring multiple ducts into a plenum (one
SP), but the low V
transport
internal to a plenum can cause dust accumulations.
14: Pressure Losses 55 printed 29May08
Blast
gate
method
1. Flow rates can be changed
more easily.
2. Costs can be saved by
turning off some branches.
1. Gates are susceptible to
corrosion, plugging, and
2. Higher losses increase
operating costs.
Static
press.
method
1. Flow rates cannot be easily
changed by accident.
2. Less risk of hazardous
exposure to maintenance
workers.
1. Less tolerant of
construction variations.
2. Difficult to modify the
system after installation.
14: Pressure Losses 56 printed 29May08
3. Branches should join at 30-45, and
the duct should expand at the junction to not accelerate the flow velocity.

Figure 14.23. A well designed branch duct
junction will have an entry angle of 30-45.
Figure 14.24. The branch entry angle for a
symmetric wye duct junction is one-half of the
major angle shown herein.
14: Pressure Losses 57 printed 29May08
4. The branch junction loss (from turbulence downstream of the junction)
depends upon the angle of entry and any unnecessary acceleration.
a. Loss = LossFactor
branch junction
VP
in the entering branch
. Eqn. 14.26

14: Pressure Losses 58 printed 29May08
b. An "acceleration loss" should be added if the downstream duct diameter
is not increased sufficiently to maintain an approximately equal V.
V
3
= (Q
1
+ Q
2
) / A
downstream
. Eqn. 14.27
Q
1
Q
2
VP
resultant
= )) VP
1
+ )) VP
2
Eqn. 14.28
Q
3
Q
3

(a flow-weighted average entering velocity pressure)
Acceleration loss = VP
3
! VP
resultant
Eqn. 14.29
Any acceleration loss is assumed to occur concurrently
with the branch junction loss.
14: Pressure Losses 59 printed 29May08
The L.E.V. Design Sequence from Chapter 10
0. Consider better alternatives to ventilation. (Chps. 8-9)
1. Determine the appropriate control velocity. (Chp. 13)
2. Design and locate the hood to either contain or collect the contaminant.
3. Estimate the flow rate of air to be moved by the fan. (Chp. 13)
4. Select the duct's material, pathway, and size. (Chp. 14 Sec. IV)
5. Determine any air cleaning requirements. (Chp. 15)
6. Provide for make-up air. (Chp. 17)
7. Calculate all energy (pressure) losses. (Chp. 14 Sec. II & V-XII)
8. Select the air mover (fan). (Chp. 16)
14: Pressure Losses 60 printed 29May08
An LEV Design Worksheet
Table 14.9. Utah State University : Industrial Hygiene : Local Exhaust Ventilation Design Worksheet (* footnotes omitted)
A B C D E F G H I J K L Manual
1 Segment Identification !
outside
hood
hood
face *b
duct
entry
1
2 Desired Velocity (control or minimum transport) fpm 3
3 Dimensions (distance, face, slot, duct, etc.) - 4
4 Air Flow Area = [width height] or [B D / 4] ft - 6
5 Air Velocity = [Flow Rate] / [Flow Area] fpm - 7
6 VP = ( [Velocity] / 4005) [D adjustment see *c] Owg 8
7 Air Flow Rate = Q (adjust for D if #SP# >25 Owg) cfm 2
8
H
O
O
D
Hood entry loss factor, LossFactor
hood
- - 13 / 17
9 Hood entry Loss = [LossFactor
hood
] [VP] Owg 20
10
F
R
I
C
T
N.
Straight duct length [L] ft 23
11 (opt.) Duct Friction Loss Factor (see *d) *b 24
12 Friction Loss using one of the formulas in *e Owg 25/34
14
T
U
R
B
U
L
E
N
C
E
E
L
B
O
W
Elbow R/ D ratio and structure
15 Elbow loss factor [LossFactor
elbow
] - - 27
16 Loss = [LossFactor
elbow
] [VP
elbow
] Owg 34a
17 Transition D
2
/D
1
(or A
2
/A
1
for abrupt contraction)
18 )VP = *VP
1
- VP
2
* for tapered expan. or contr. "wg
19 Angle of expansion, contraction, or branch jnct.
20
T
R
A
N
S
I
T
I
O
N
Expansion "loss factor" [LossFactor
expansion
] - -
21 Loss = (LossFactor
expansion
))VP or (1-R))VP Owg 34b
22 Tapered Contr. loss fac. = LossFactor
tapered contr.
- - 32a
23 Loss = LossFactor
tapered contraction
()VP) Owg 34c
24 Abrupt Contr. loss factor = LossFactor
abrupt contr.
- - 32b
25 Loss = LossFactor
abrupt contr.
(VP
2
) Owg 34d
26 Branch Entry loss factor [LossFactor
branch
] - - 32c
27 Loss = LossFactor
branch
(VP
branch
) Owg 34e
28 Other losses [see *f] "wg 36
29 Loss in Segment (repeat Loss entry for column) Owg 35
30 Cumulative sum of losses = E[line#29] Owg
31 (optional) -SP = (see *g) Owg 37
14: Pressure Losses 61 printed 29May08
Using the USU LEV Design Worksheet
1. Mentally divide the entire system into a series of "designable" segments.
2. Calculate the V
face
from V
control
and the hood geometry
Col. A. for collection hoods (DallaValle eqn.). Use lines #1-5
Col. B. for hood face (A
face
and V
face
) and its loss. to determine
Col. C for duct entry and its loss (lines #8-9). A Q in line #7.
3. Calculate one duct loss in each column D and beyond, as needed.
Enter the duct parameters A
duct
, V
duct
, and VP
duct
into lines #4-6.
a. Calculate frictional loss in straight duct
1) Enter length in feet into line #10.
2) Optionally, enter the LossFactor per foot into line #11.
3) Duct friction loss = either line #11#10#6 or formula in *e.
b. Calculate the turbulence losses for elbows in lines #14-16.
c. Calculate the turbulence losses for expansions, contractions, or
branch junctions in lines #17-27.
14: Pressure Losses 62 printed 29May08
Table 14.9. Utah State University : Industrial Hygiene : Local Exhaust Ventilation Design Worksheet *a
A B C D E F G H I J K L Manual
1 Segment Identification !
outside
hood
hood
face *b
duct
entry
1
2 Desired Velocity (control or minimum transport) fpm 3
3 Dimensions (distance, face, slot, duct, etc.) - 4
4 Air Flow Area = [width height] or [B D / 4] ft - 6
5 Air Velocity = [Flow Rate] / [Flow Area] fpm - 7
6 VP = ( [Velocity] / 4005) [D adjustment see *c] Owg 8
7 Air Flow Rate = Q (adjust for D if #SP# >25 Owg) cfm 2
8
H
O
O
D
Hood entry loss factor, LossFactor
hood
- - 13 / 17
9 Hood entry Loss = [LossFactor
hood
] [VP] Owg 20
10
F
R
I
C
T
N.
Straight duct length [L] ft 23
11 (opt.) Duct Friction Loss Factor (see *d) *b 24
12 Friction Loss using one of the formulas in *e Owg 25/34
14
T
U
R
B
U
L
E
N
C
E
E
L
B
O
W
Elbow R/ D ratio and structure
15 Elbow loss factor [LossFactor
elbow
] - - 27
16 Loss = [LossFactor
elbow
] [VP
elbow
] Owg 34a
17 Transition D
2
/D
1
(or A
2
/A
1
for abrupt contraction)
18 )VP = *VP
1
- VP
2
* for tapered expan. or contr. "wg
19 Angle of expansion, contraction, or branch jnct.
20
T
R
A
N
S
I
T
I
O
N
Expansion "loss factor" [LossFactor
expansion
] - -
21 Loss = (LossFactor
expansion
))VP or (1-R))VP Owg 34b
22 Tapered Contr. loss fac. = LossFactor
tapered contr.
- - 32a
23 Loss = LossFactor
tapered contraction
()VP) Owg 34c
24 Abrupt Contr. loss factor = LossFactor
abrupt contr.
- - 32b
25 Loss = LossFactor
abrupt contr.
(VP
2
) Owg 34d
26 Branch Entry loss factor [LossFactor
branch
] - - 32c
27 Loss = LossFactor
branch
(VP
branch
) Owg 34e
28 Other losses [see *f] "wg 36
29 Loss in Segment (repeat Loss entry for column) Owg 35
30 Cumulative sum of losses = E[line#29] Owg
31 (optional) -SP = (see *g) Owg 37
Footnotes: *a The numbered rows on the far right correspond to a similar form in the 23
rd
Ed. of the ACGIH Manual (many of which are either missing or repeated herein).
*b If applicable, use a form of the DallaValle Equation: Q
collection hood
= K
hood
V
control
( 10 X + A
face
) = V
face
A
face
where K
hood
= 0.75 for a flange or 0.5 for a flange and a bench.
(-elevation(ft)/18,000)
] [the temperature adjustment = 535/(F+460) ].
*d Optional LossFactor
friction
as given in Table 14.5 or 14.6 (Manual Tab. 5-5 or 5-6) or as the first term in Eqn. 14.12 as loss per inch of VP per foot of duct.
*e Loss either = LossFactor
from table
L VP, for galvanized = 0.387 L (VP
.9605
)/(diam.inch
1.224
), or for PVC & smooth ducts = 0.314 L (VP
.9305
)/(diam.inch
1.204
).
*f For example, losses due to make-up air resistance, a branch junction perhaps with acceleration, air cleaner, or fan system effect.
*g Either -SP = VP + cum. sum of losses before the fan = row #8 + row #n or SP = cum. losses in the rest of the duct after the fan.
14: Pressure Losses 63 printed 29May08
4. Determine and enter any "other losses" in line #28 including any for
acceleration losses (due to a branch junction),
the air cleaner (obtain from the manufacturer),
any resistance to the flow of make-up air, or
fan entry losses (Chapter 16).
5. Copy each loss onto line #29 ("Loss in Segment") and
calculate a running cumulative loss [E Losses] in line #30.
The fan will be specify by using
the system's Q requirements (line #7) and
the FanSP = the sum of all the losses (line #30).
6. Optionally, calculate SP wherever it might be useful, such as
at a branch junction (where each SP should be designed to be equal),
anywhere you may want to actually measure SP, or
just to see if and where SP exceeds 20 inches (will change 4005).
14: Pressure Losses 64 printed 29May08
Table 14.9. Utah State University : Industrial Hygiene : Local Exhaust Ventilation Design Worksheet (* footnotes omitted)
A B C D E F G H I J K L Manual
1 Segment Identification !
outside
hood
hood
face *b
duct
entry
1
2 Desired Velocity (control or minimum transport) fpm 3
3 Dimensions (distance, face, slot, duct, etc.) - 4
4 Air Flow Area = [width height] or [B D / 4] ft - 6
5 Air Velocity = [Flow Rate] / [Flow Area] fpm - 7
6 VP = ( [Velocity] / 4005) [D adjustment see *c] Owg 8
7 Air Flow Rate = Q (adjust for D if #SP# >25 Owg) cfm 2
8
H
O
O
D
Hood entry loss factor, LossFactor
hood
- - 13 / 17
9 Hood entry Loss = [LossFactor
hood
] [VP] Owg 20
10
F
R
I
C
T
N.
Straight duct length [L] ft 23
11 (opt.) Duct Friction Loss Factor (see *d) *b 24
12 Friction Loss using one of the formulas in *e Owg 25/34
14
T
U
R
B
U
L
E
N
C
E
E
L
B
O
W
Elbow R/ D ratio and structure
15 Elbow loss factor [LossFactor
elbow
] - - 27
16 Loss = [LossFactor
elbow
] [VP
elbow
] Owg 34a
17 Transition D
2
/D
1
(or A
2
/A
1
for abrupt contraction)
18 )VP = *VP
1
- VP
2
* for tapered expan. or contr. "wg
19 Angle of expansion, contraction, or branch jnct.
20
T
R
A
N
S
I
T
I
O
N
Expansion "loss factor" [LossFactor
expansion
] - -
21 Loss = (LossFactor
expansion
))VP or (1-R))VP Owg 34b
22 Tapered Contr. loss fac. = LossFactor
tapered contr.
- - 32a
23 Loss = LossFactor
tapered contraction
()VP) Owg 34c
24 Abrupt Contr. loss factor = LossFactor
abrupt contr.
- - 32b
25 Loss = LossFactor
abrupt contr.
(VP
2
) Owg 34d
26 Branch Entry loss factor [LossFactor
branch
] - - 32c
27 Loss = LossFactor
branch
(VP
branch
) Owg 34e
28 Other losses [see *f] "wg 36
29 Loss in Segment (repeat Loss entry for column) Owg 35
30 Cumulative sum of losses = E[line#29] Owg
31 (optional) -SP = (see *g) Owg 37
14: Pressure Losses 65 printed 29May08
The learning goals of Chapter 14:
G Know that moving air causes friction. Expanding air flow causes turbulence.
G Know that each pressure loss is generally proportional to Velocity Pressure (and
therefore to V and Q).
G Know that individual losses add cumulatively to the resulting total losses on either
side of the fan.
N Understand what a vena contracta is and how it relates to pressure losses.
G Know how to find the recommended V
transport
in a VS diagram and to pick a generic
value. Be familiar with the ranges of generic values.
N Be able to find a hood entry loss factor (esp. in a VS diagram and for a generic
hood or duct adaptor) and to use it to calculate a hood entry loss.
Be able to calculate straight duct friction losses using either a tabular method or
a formula method.
N Be able to find and use loss factors for elbows, contractions, and expansions.
N Be broadly familiar with the blast gate and design methods to balance a branched
duct system (calculating such a balance is too time-consuming for in-class exams).