ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201805.0420.v1
Subject: Engineering, General Engineering Keywords: wet agglomeration; flocculation; hydrodynamics; turbulence
Online: 29 May 2018 (09:00:36 CEST)
In this study, an experimentally validated computational model was developed to investigate the hydrodynamics in a rotor-stator vortex RVR agglomeration reactor having a rotating disc at the centre with two shrouded outer plates. A numerical simulation was performed using a simplified form of the reactor geometry to compute the 3D flow field in batch mode operations. Thereafter, the model was validated using data from a 2D Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV) flow analysis performed during the design of the reactor. Using different operating speeds—70, 90, 110 and 130 rpm, the flow fields were computed numerically followed by a comprehensive data analysis. The simulation results showed separated boundary layers on the rotating disc and the stator. The flow field within the reactor is characterized by a rotational plane circular forced vortex flow in which the streamlines are concentric circles with a rotational vortex. Overall, the results of the numerical simulation demonstrate a fairly good agreement between the CFD model and the experimental data as well as the available theoretical predictions. The swirl ratio β was found to be approximately 0.4044, 0.4038, 0.4044 and 0.4043 for operating speeds of N=70, 90, 110 and 130 rpm respectively. In terms of the spatial distribution, the turbulence intensity and kinetic energy are concentrated on the outer region of the reactor while the axial velocity showed a decreasing intensity towards the shroud. However, a comparison of the CFD and experimental predictions of the tangential velocity and the vorticity amplitude profiles shows that these parameters were under-predicted by the experimental analysis which could be attributed to some of the experimental limitations rather than the robustness of the CFD model or numerical code.