(172g) Settling of a Swarm of Suspended Particles At Low and Moderate Reynolds Numbers | AIChE

(172g) Settling of a Swarm of Suspended Particles At Low and Moderate Reynolds Numbers


Ayeni, O. - Presenter, Louisiana State University
Wu, C., ANSYS, Inc.
Nandakumar, K., Louisiana State University

The sedimentation of a swarm (cloud) of particles in a viscous fluid at low and moderate Reynolds numbers has been studied using an Eulerian-Lagrangian multiphase flow approach.

We looked at the volume fraction dependence of the settling cloud and find a similar dependence in the simulations as in the theoretical predictions of Nitsche and Batchelor 1997. The average cloud settling velocity and the velocity fluctuations around this average are found to have a linear dependence on φ1/3at negligible Reynolds number. The velocity fluctuations display strong anisotropy with the magnitude of the vertical component almost three times the magnitude of the horizontal component.

Particle leakage at low Reynolds number was established and found to be directly related to the initial number of particles in the swarm.

At higher Reynolds numbers, the cloud of particles evolved into an open torus and subsequently loses its axi-symmetry and breaks-up into a number of secondary clouds. This process is a type of Rayleigh-Taylor instability and the number of secondary drops was found in our simulations to be dependent on the shape of the boundaries of the flow domain used rather than the nature of the boundaries.

Breakup at moderate cloud Reynolds number, Rec is found to occur after a critical aspect ratio is reached and a scaling was proposed for the dependence of the breakup length and breakup time on Rec.