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A bubble size distribution model for the numerical simulation of bubbly flows

Congress title :International Conference on Multiphase Flow (ICMF)
Congress town :Leipzig
Congress date :09/07/2007


This study, carried out at Institut de Radioprotection et de Sûreté Nucléaire, concerns the model of a polydispersed bubble population in the frame of an ensemble averaged two-phase flow formulation. We consider the ability of the moment density approach to represent bubble population size distribution within a multi-dimensional CFD code based on the two-fluid model. Special attention is given to the closure issue of the method. We consider in particular the influence of the polydispersion on (i) coalescence and break-up phenomena and on (ii) momentum inter-phase transfers related to drag and lift forces. A first approach formulation is developed allowing to represent a full spectrum of bubble size with a very reduced number of parameters. The latter property constitutes one of the main advantages of the moment density method with regard to alternative methods for polydispersion representation like population balance. The system of transport equations and corresponding main closure terms are derived in the case of adiabatic flows with spherical bubbles of an incompressible fluid that is immiscible in the continuous phase. Air-water polydispersed bubbly flows in a vertical pipe with obstacle of the TOPFLOW experiments series performed at FZD are then used as simulations test cases. The numerical results, obtained with NEPTUNE_CFD allow to attest the validity of the approach. Perspectives concerning the improvement of the model, its validation, as well as the extension of its applicability range are discussed.
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