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Analysis of Cavitation Processes in Xylem

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Document pages: 12 pages

Abstract: Cavitation in plants is caused by development of air bubbles, which is related to their equilibrium and development. There is a univariate cubic equation for bubble balance. New root formula of this kind of equation was proposed by Shenjin Fan, which is simpler than the Caldan’s. Using Shenjin formulas and taking water pressure P1 as an independent variable, this paper gives the exact solution of the equation under certain conditions. The stability of the equilibrium of an air bubble in its different radius ranges is obtained by the way different from the previous. This kind of cavitation includes two types: First type may be caused by the growth of pre-existent air bubbles; Second type is air seeding, here defined as the sucking of air bubbles from already gas-filled conduits. For air seeding three ways of cavitation have been proposed. For the first type this paper puts forward that two ways of cavitation can occur, which are the same with the first two ways of air seeding except of air reservoirs. Moreover, for the first way of the first type, the range of water pressures is the same with that of the first way of air seeding. For the second way of the first type the range of water pressures is much wider, or the pressure range equals the pressure sum of the second and third ways of air seeding. Through the specific data the relationship between the two types is given.

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