Pressure evolution inside a cork stopper under vacuum

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A cork stopper maybe described by a 3D array of microcavities, which is a 3D arrangement of small cavities interconnected by tiny restrictions. Upon a step pressure change gas slowly flows through the restrictions from the microcavities to the exterior. In this work, we describe a technique to calculate the pressure evolution inside the array and the total gas flow. It is based on electrical analogies and uses a SPICE simulation software to solve large arrays. We reveal how to convert orthogonal 3D arrays in 1D arrays based on symmetry considerations, allowing us to simulate very large systems. We then apply our technique to a cork stopper to calculate the pressure evolution in the inner cell when the stopper is subjected to vacuum. We also describe an experiment to measure the characteristic time constant of a cork stopper and we compare the experimental results with those obtained from our simulations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)375-382
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2019


  • 3D array
  • Cork
  • Flow simulation
  • Gas flow
  • Pressure simulation


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