CFD simulation and experimental analysis of erosion in a slurry tank test rig
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Erosion occurring in equipment dealing with liquid-solid mixtures such as pipeline parts, slurry pumps, liquid-solid stirred reactors and slurry mixers in various industrial applications results in operational failure and economic costs. A slurry erosion tank test rig is designed and was built to investigate the erosion rates of materials and the influencing parameters such as flow velocity and turbulence, flow angle, solid particle concentration, particles size distribution, hardness and target material properties on the material loss and erosion profiles. In the present study, a computational fluid dynamics (CFD) tool is used to simulate the erosion rate of sample plates in the liquid-solid slurry mixture in a cylindrical tank. The predictions were made in a steady state and also transient manner, applying the flow at the room temperature and using water and sand as liquid and solid phases, respectively. The multiple reference frame method (MRF) is applied to simulate the flow behavior and liquid-solid interactions in the slurry tank test rig. The MRF method is used since it is less demanding than sliding mesh method (SM) and gives satisfactory results. The computational domain is divided into three regions: a rotational or MRF zone containing the mixer, a rotational zone (MRF) containing the erosion plates and a static zone (outer liquid zone). It is observed that changing the MRF zone diameter and height causes a very low impact on the results. The simulated results were obtained for two kinds of hard metals namely stainless steel and ST-50 under some various operating conditions and are found in good agreement with the experimental results.
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