Computational Fluid Dynamics
Most processes in piping systems can be analyzed using a 1D flow model, due to the use of simple geometries, alongside previous comparisons of computed results to the vast amounts of available experimental data. However, some complex flow problems require a more in-depth analysis. When, for instance, either a complex geometry is used or multiphase flows are introduced, the 1D flow analysis does not provide sufficient detail to deliver accurate results. For analysis of these complex flow problems Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) is an essential tool.
What is a CFD analysis study?
Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) is a tool to analyze and solve problems that involve fluid flows. The fluid motion and heat transfer are solved using numerical schemes. CFD is applied to a wide range of research and engineering problems in many fields and industries.
Why perform a CFD analysis?
CFD provides a detailed description of the complex flow patterns and properties in the system. Due to the flexibility of the analysis, CFD has a wide range of applications. Moreover, due to recent advances in CFD, accurate predictions can be made to the flow properties of complex systems, such as pipe line component interferences, separation systems, or heat exchangers. This can be used to predict the performance of the analyzed system. Furthermore, CFD models are easily revised and can offer many detailed insights into the flow physics. Therefore, CFD can be used to replace expensive and time-consuming methods such as experiments, or for systems where no measurements are possible such as in deep sea applications or applications using liquid metal.
How are CFD analyses performed?
At Dynaflow Research Group we use Helyx-OpenFOAM for our CFD studies. HELYX is a comprehensive general-purpose CFD software package for engineering analysis and design optimization of enterprise applications, based on an advanced open-source simulation engine developed by ENGYS using OpenFOAM technology. The CFD simulation engine, HELYX, features an advanced hex-dominant automatic mesh algorithm with polyhedra support which can run in parallel to generate large computational grids. The solver technology is based on the standard finite-volume approach, covering a wide range of physical models.
After a thorough discussion with the client over the CFD analysis results; realistic mitigations will be proposed to improve the systems’ reliability, safety, and performance.
Systems containing multiple phases are difficult to capture in current 1D flow solvers, due to the three-dimensional nature of the flow. For these kinds of systems, CFD can help to provide an accurate insight into the fluid behavior. Dynaflow Research Group has performed numerous CFD analyses on multiphase flows. Our experience has been developed into a wide range expertise: different flow regimes, different geometry complexities, multiple flow scales, exotic, non-Newtonian fluids, dynamic geometries. We are confident in our ability to provide accurate results for any type of multiphase flow problem.
Structural analysis in equipment
Optimization of in-line components
In-line components such as valves and orifices are key features of industrial installations. Using CFD the locations and design of these components can be optimized in order to mitigate possible failures or significant pressure drops due to hydrodynamic effects. At Dynaflow Research Group we combine our extensive experience in working with these in-line components with parametric CFD models in order to optimize the design of your in-line components such as the following.
Detailed Flow Analysis of a Butterfly Valve and Piping
CFD analyses are not limited to the subjects discussed above. Many more applications are possible and are well represented in our project portfolio:
- Heat transfer in burners,
- Interference of pipe line components such as filters, valves pump inlet/outlet etc.,
- Flow inside pumps and compressors.
What is possible with CFD?
The types of analyses that can be performed in a CFD application are:
- Optimizing design to improve performance,
- Validating initial design performance,
- Determining cause of performance issues or failures,
- Feasibility study of new configurations, e.g. closely spaced filters or pumps,
- Fluid structure interaction analysis to solve the interaction of some movable or deformable structure with an internal or surrounding fluid flow.
Dynaflow Research Group has years of experience in applying advanced CFD techniques. Many of our engineers have obtained an MSc or PhD using CFD and have obtained experience in using a variety of tools like OpenFOAM, HELYX, ANSYS Fluent and ANSYS CFX on a wide variety of projects. DRG is a respected partner to work with and to help you gaining a better understanding of the flow inside any equipment. So, if you are dealing with a complex flow problem or require a CFD analysis to validate your design, feel free to contact us.