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Pore-Scale Simulation of the Interaction between a Single Water Droplet and a Hydrophobic Wire Mesh Screen in Diesel

: Elsayed, Omar; Kirsch, Ralf; Krull, Fabian; Antonyuk, Sergiy; Osterroth, Sebastian

Volltext ()

Fluids 6 (2021), Nr.9, Art. 319, 21 S.
ISSN: 2311-5521
Zeitschriftenaufsatz, Elektronische Publikation
Fraunhofer ITWM ()
computational fluid dynamic (CFD); multiphase flow; Volume of fluid (VoF); water droplets; liquid-liquid separation; pore-scale simulations

Recently, the trend towards sustainable energy production and pollution control has motivated the increased consumption of ultra-low-sulfur diesel (ULSD) or bio-fuels. Such fuels have relatively low surface tension with water and therefore, the separation of water from fuel has become a challenging problem. The separation process relies on using porous structures for the collection and removal of water droplets. Hence, understanding the interaction between water droplets and the separators is vital. The simplest geometry of a separator is the wire mesh screen, which is used in many modern waterdiesel separators. Thus, it is considered here for systematic study. In this work, pore-scale computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations were performed using OpenFOAM® (an open-source C++ too lbox for fluid dynamics simulations) coupled with a new accurate scheme for the computation of the surface tension force. First, two validation test cases were performed and compared to experimental observations in corresponding bubble-point tests. Second, in order to describe the interaction between water droplets and wire mesh screens, the simulations were performed with different parameters: mean diesel velocity, open area ratio, fiber radii, YoungLaplace contact angle, and the droplet radius. New correlations were obtained which describe the average reduction of open surface area (clogging), the pressure drop, and retention criteria.