Schematic diagram of HP-LPBF melting process.

Modeling and numerical studies of high-precision laser powder bed fusion

Yi Wei ;Genyu Chen;Nengru Tao;Wei Zhou
https://doi.org/10.1063/5.0191504

In order to comprehensively reveal the evolutionary dynamics of the molten pool and the state of motion of the fluid during the high-precision laser powder bed fusion (HP-LPBF) process, this study aims to deeply investigate the specific manifestations of the multiphase flow, solidification phenomena, and heat transfer during the process by means of numerical simulation methods. Numerical simulation models of SS316L single-layer HP-LPBF formation with single and double tracks were constructed using the discrete element method and the computational fluid dynamics method. The effects of various factors such as Marangoni convection, surface tension, vapor recoil, gravity, thermal convection, thermal radiation, and evaporative heat dissipation on the heat and mass transfer in the molten pool have been paid attention to during the model construction process. The results show that the molten pool exhibits a “comet” shape, in which the temperature gradient at the front end of the pool is significantly larger than that at the tail end, with the highest temperature gradient up to 1.69 × 108 K/s. It is also found that the depth of the second track is larger than that of the first one, and the process parameter window has been determined preliminarily. In addition, the application of HP-LPBF technology helps to reduce the surface roughness and minimize the forming size.

Topics

Heat transferNonequilibrium thermodynamicsSolidification processComputer simulationDiscrete element methodLasersMass transferFluid mechanicsComputational fluid dynamicsMultiphase flows

I. INTRODUCTION

Laser powder bed fusion (LPBF) has become a research hotspot in the field of additive manufacturing of metals due to its advantages of high-dimensional accuracy, good surface quality, high density, and high material utilization.1,2 With the rapid development of electronics, medical, automotive, biotechnology, energy, communication, and optics, the demand for microfabrication technology is increasing day by day.3 High-precision laser powder bed fusion (HP-LPBF) is one of the key manufacturing technologies for tiny parts in the fields of electronics, medical, automotive, biotechnology, energy, communication, and optics because of its process characteristics such as small focal spot diameter, small powder particle size, and thin powder layup layer thickness.4–13 Compared with LPBF, HP-LPBF has the significant advantages of smaller focal spot diameter, smaller powder particle size, and thinner layer thickness. These advantages make HP-LPBF perform better in producing micro-fine parts, high surface quality, and parts with excellent mechanical properties.

HP-LPBF is in the exploratory stage, and researchers have already done some exploratory studies on the focal spot diameter, the amount of defocusing, and the powder particle size. In order to explore the influence of changing the laser focal spot diameter on the LPBF process characteristics of the law, Wildman et al.14 studied five groups of different focal spot diameter LPBF forming 316L stainless steel (SS316L) processing effect, the smallest focal spot diameter of 26 μm, and the results confirm that changing the focal spot diameter can be achieved to achieve the energy control, so as to control the quality of forming. Subsequently, Mclouth et al.15 proposed the laser out-of-focus amount (focal spot diameter) parameter, which characterizes the distance between the forming plane and the laser focal plane. The laser energy density was controlled by varying the defocusing amount while keeping the laser parameters constant. Sample preparation at different focal positions was investigated, and their microstructures were characterized. The results show that the samples at the focal plane have finer microstructure than those away from the focal plane, which is the effect of higher power density and smaller focal spot diameter. In order to explore the influence of changing the powder particle size on the characteristics of the LPBF process, Qian et al.16 carried out single-track scanning simulations on powder beds with average powder particle sizes of 70 and 40 μm, respectively, and the results showed that the melt tracks sizes were close to each other under the same process parameters for the two particle-size distributions and that the molten pool of powder beds with small particles was more elongated and the edges of the melt tracks were relatively flat. In order to explore the superiority of HP-LPBF technology, Xu et al.17 conducted a comparative analysis of HP-LPBF and conventional LPBF of SS316L. The results showed that the average surface roughness of the top surface after forming by HP-LPBF could reach 3.40 μm. Once again, it was verified that HP-LPBF had higher forming quality than conventional LPBF. On this basis, Wei et al.6 comparatively analyzed the effects of different laser focal spot diameters on different powder particle sizes formed by LPBF. The results showed that the smaller the laser focal spot diameter, the fewer the defects on the top and side surfaces. The above research results confirm that reducing the laser focal spot diameter can obtain higher energy density and thus better forming quality.

LPBF involves a variety of complex systems and mechanisms, and the final quality of the part is influenced by a large number of process parameters.18–24 Some research results have shown that there are more than 50 factors affecting the quality of the specimen. The influencing factors are mainly categorized into three main groups: (1) laser parameters, (2) powder parameters, and (3) equipment parameters, which interact with each other to determine the final specimen quality. With the continuous development of technologies such as computational materials science and computational fluid dynamics (CFD), the method of studying the influence of different factors on the forming quality of LPBF forming process has been shifted from time-consuming and laborious experimental characterization to the use of numerical simulation methods. As a result, more and more researchers are adopting this approach for their studies. Currently, numerical simulation studies on LPBF are mainly focused on the exploration of molten pool, temperature distribution, and residual stresses.

  1. Finite element simulation based on continuum mechanics and free surface fluid flow modeling based on fluid dynamics are two common approaches to study the behavior of LPBF molten pool.25–28 Finite element simulation focuses on the temperature and thermal stress fields, treats the powder bed as a continuum, and determines the molten pool size by plotting the elemental temperature above the melting point. In contrast, fluid dynamics modeling can simulate the 2D or 3D morphology of the metal powder pile and obtain the powder size and distribution by certain algorithms.29 The flow in the molten pool is mainly affected by recoil pressure and the Marangoni effect. By simulating the molten pool formation, it is possible to predict defects, molten pool shape, and flow characteristics, as well as the effect of process parameters on the molten pool geometry.30–34 In addition, other researchers have been conducted to optimize the laser processing parameters through different simulation methods and experimental data.35–46 Crystal growth during solidification is studied to further understand the effect of laser parameters on dendritic morphology and solute segregation.47–54 A multi-scale system has been developed to describe the fused deposition process during 3D printing, which is combined with the conductive heat transfer model and the dendritic solidification model.55,56
  2. Relevant scholars have adopted various different methods for simulation, such as sequential coupling theory,57 Lagrangian and Eulerian thermal models,58 birth–death element method,25 and finite element method,59 in order to reveal the physical phenomena of the laser melting process and optimize the process parameters. Luo et al.60 compared the LPBF temperature field and molten pool under double ellipsoidal and Gaussian heat sources by ANSYS APDL and found that the diffusion of the laser energy in the powder significantly affects the molten pool size and the temperature field.
  3. The thermal stresses obtained from the simulation correlate with the actual cracks,61 and local preheating can effectively reduce the residual stresses.62 A three-dimensional thermodynamic finite element model investigated the temperature and stress variations during laser-assisted fabrication and found that powder-to-solid conversion increases the temperature gradient, stresses, and warpage.63 Other scholars have predicted residual stresses and part deflection for LPBF specimens and investigated the effects of deposition pattern, heat, laser power, and scanning strategy on residual stresses, noting that high-temperature gradients lead to higher residual stresses.64–67 

In short, the process of LPBF forming SS316L is extremely complex and usually involves drastic multi-scale physicochemical changes that will only take place on a very small scale. Existing literature employs DEM-based mesoscopic-scale numerical simulations to investigate the effects of process parameters on the molten pool dynamics of LPBF-formed SS316L. However, a few studies have been reported on the key mechanisms of heating and solidification, spatter, and convective behavior of the molten pool of HP-LPBF-formed SS316L with small laser focal spot diameters. In this paper, the geometrical properties of coarse and fine powder particles under three-dimensional conditions were first calculated using DEM. Then, numerical simulation models for single-track and double-track cases in the single-layer HP-LPBF forming SS316L process were developed at mesoscopic scale using the CFD method. The flow genesis of the melt in the single-track and double-track molten pools is discussed, and their 3D morphology and dimensional characteristics are discussed. In addition, the effects of laser process parameters, powder particle size, and laser focal spot diameter on the temperature field, characterization information, and defects in the molten pool are discussed.

II. MODELING

A. 3D powder bed modeling

HP-LPBF is an advanced processing technique for preparing target parts layer by layer stacking, the process of which involves repetitive spreading and melting of powders. In this process, both the powder spreading and the morphology of the powder bed are closely related to the results of the subsequent melting process, while the melted surface also affects the uniform distribution of the next layer of powder. For this reason, this chapter focuses on the modeling of the physical action during the powder spreading process and the theory of DEM to establish the numerical model of the powder bed, so as to lay a solid foundation for the accuracy of volume of fluid (VOF) and CFD.

1. DEM

DEM is a numerical technique for calculating the interaction of a large number of particles, which calculates the forces and motions of the spheres by considering each powder sphere as an independent unit. The motion of the powder particles follows the laws of classical Newtonian mechanics, including translational and rotational,38,68–70 which are expressed as follows:����¨=���+∑��ij,

(1)����¨=∑�(�ij×�ij),

(2)

where �� is the mass of unit particle i in kg, ��¨ is the advective acceleration in m/s2, And g is the gravitational acceleration in m/s2. �ij is the force in contact with the neighboring particle � in N. �� is the rotational inertia of the unit particle � in kg · m2. ��¨ is the unit particle � angular acceleration in rad/s2. �ij is the vector pointing from unit particle � to the contact point of neighboring particle �⁠.

Equations (1) and (2) can be used to calculate the velocity and angular velocity variations of powder particles to determine their positions and velocities. A three-dimensional powder bed model of SS316L was developed using DEM. The powder particles are assumed to be perfect spheres, and the substrate and walls are assumed to be rigid. To describe the contact between the powder particles and between the particles and the substrate, a non-slip Hertz–Mindlin nonlinear spring-damping model71 was used with the following expression:�hz=��������+��[(�����ij−�eff����)−(�����+�eff����)],

(3)

where �hz is the force calculated using the Hertzian in M. �� and �� are the radius of unit particles � and � in m, respectively. �� is the overlap size of the two powder particles in m. ��⁠, �� are the elastic constants in the normal and tangential directions, respectively. �ij is the unit vector connecting the centerlines of the two powder particles. �eff is the effective mass of the two powder particles in kg. �� and �� are the viscoelastic damping constants in the normal and tangential directions, respectively. �� and �� are the components of the relative velocities of the two powder particles. ��� is the displacement vector between two spherical particles. The schematic diagram of overlapping powder particles is shown in Fig. 1.

FIG. 1.

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Schematic diagram of overlapping powder particles.

Because the particle size of the powder used for HP-LPBF is much smaller than 100 μm, the effect of van der Waals forces must be considered. Therefore, the cohesive force �jkr of the Hertz–Mindlin model was used instead of van der Waals forces,72 with the following expression:�jkr=−4��0�*�1.5+4�*3�*�3,

(4)1�*=(1−��2)��+(1−��2)��,

(5)1�*=1��+1��,

(6)

where �* is the equivalent Young’s modulus in GPa; �* is the equivalent particle radius in m; �0 is the surface energy of the powder particles in J/m2; α is the contact radius in m; �� and �� are the Young’s modulus of the unit particles � and �⁠, respectively, in GPa; and �� and �� are the Poisson’s ratio of the unit particles � and �⁠, respectively.

2. Model building

Figure 2 shows a 3D powder bed model generated using DEM with a coarse powder geometry of 1000 × 400 × 30 μm3. The powder layer thickness is 30 μm, and the powder bed porosity is 40%. The average particle size of this spherical powder is 31.7 μm and is normally distributed in the range of 15–53 μm. The geometry of the fine powder was 1000 × 400 × 20 μm3, with a layer thickness of 20 μm, and the powder bed porosity of 40%. The average particle size of this spherical powder is 11.5 μm and is normally distributed in the range of 5–25 μm. After the 3D powder bed model is generated, it needs to be imported into the CFD simulation software for calculation, and the imported geometric model is shown in Fig. 3. This geometric model is mainly composed of three parts: protective gas, powder bed, and substrate. Under the premise of ensuring the accuracy of the calculation, the mesh size is set to 3 μm, and the total number of coarse powder meshes is 1 704 940. The total number of fine powder meshes is 3 982 250.

FIG. 2.

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Three-dimensional powder bed model: (a) coarse powder, (b) fine powder.

FIG. 3.

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Geometric modeling of the powder bed computational domain: (a) coarse powder, (b) fine powder.

B. Modeling of fluid mechanics simulation

In order to solve the flow, melting, and solidification problems involved in HP-LPBF molten pool, the study must follow the three governing equations of conservation of mass, conservation of energy, and conservation of momentum.73 The VOF method, which is the most widely used in fluid dynamics, is used to solve the molten pool dynamics model.

1. VOF

VOF is a method for tracking the free interface between the gas and liquid phases on the molten pool surface. The core idea of the method is to define a volume fraction function F within each grid, indicating the proportion of the grid space occupied by the material, 0 ≤ F ≤ 1 in Fig. 4. Specifically, when F = 0, the grid is empty and belongs to the gas-phase region; when F = 1, the grid is completely filled with material and belongs to the liquid-phase region; and when 0 < F < 1, the grid contains free surfaces and belongs to the mixed region. The direction normal to the free surface is the direction of the fastest change in the volume fraction F (the direction of the gradient of the volume fraction), and the direction of the gradient of the volume fraction can be calculated from the values of the volume fractions in the neighboring grids.74 The equations controlling the VOF are expressed as follows:𝛻����+�⋅(��→)=0,

(7)

where t is the time in s and �→ is the liquid velocity in m/s.

FIG. 4.

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Schematic diagram of VOF.

The material parameters of the mixing zone are altered due to the inclusion of both the gas and liquid phases. Therefore, in order to represent the density of the mixing zone, the average density �¯ is used, which is expressed as follows:72�¯=(1−�1)�gas+�1�metal,

(8)

where �1 is the proportion of liquid phase, �gas is the density of protective gas in kg/m3, and �metal is the density of metal in kg/m3.

2. Control equations and boundary conditions

Figure 5 is a schematic diagram of the HP-LPBF melting process. First, the laser light strikes a localized area of the material and rapidly heats up the area. Next, the energy absorbed in the region is diffused through a variety of pathways (heat conduction, heat convection, and surface radiation), and this process triggers complex phase transition phenomena (melting, evaporation, and solidification). In metals undergoing melting, the driving forces include surface tension and the Marangoni effect, recoil due to evaporation, and buoyancy due to gravity and uneven density. The above physical phenomena interact with each other and do not occur independently.

FIG. 5.

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Schematic diagram of HP-LPBF melting process.

  1. Laser heat sourceThe Gaussian surface heat source model is used as the laser heat source model with the following expression:�=2�0����2exp(−2�12��2),(9)where � is the heat flow density in W/m2, �0 is the absorption rate of SS316L, �� is the radius of the laser focal spot in m, and �1 is the radial distance from the center of the laser focal spot in m. The laser focal spot can be used for a wide range of applications.
  2. Energy absorptionThe formula for calculating the laser absorption �0 of SS316L is as follows:�0=0.365(�0[1+�0(�−20)]/�)0.5,(10)where �0 is the direct current resistivity of SS316L at 20 °C in Ω m, �0 is the resistance temperature coefficient in ppm/°C, � is the temperature in °C, and � is the laser wavelength in m.
  3. Heat transferThe basic principle of heat transfer is conservation of energy, which is expressed as follows:𝛻𝛻𝛻�(��)��+�·(��→�)=�·(�0����)+��,(11)where � is the density of liquid phase SS316L in kg/m3, �� is the specific heat capacity of SS316L in J/(kg K), 𝛻� is the gradient operator, t is the time in s, T is the temperature in K, 𝛻�� is the temperature gradient, �→ is the velocity vector, �0 is the coefficient of thermal conduction of SS316L in W/(m K), and  �� is the thermal energy dissipation term in the molten pool.
  4. Molten pool flowThe following three conditions need to be satisfied for the molten pool to flow:
    • Conservation of mass with the following expression:𝛻�·(��→)=0.(12)
    • Conservation of momentum (Navier–Stokes equation) with the following expression:𝛻𝛻𝛻𝛻���→��+�(�→·�)�→=�·[−pI+�(��→+(��→)�)]+�,(13)where � is the pressure in Pa exerted on the liquid phase SS316L microelement, � is the unit matrix, � is the fluid viscosity in N s/m2, and � is the volumetric force (gravity, atmospheric pressure, surface tension, vapor recoil, and the Marangoni effect).
    • Conservation of energy, see Eq. (11)
  5. Surface tension and the Marangoni effectThe effect of temperature on the surface tension coefficient is considered and set as a linear relationship with the following expression:�=�0−��dT(�−��),(14)where � is the surface tension of the molten pool at temperature T in N/m, �� is the melting temperature of SS316L in K, �0 is the surface tension of the molten pool at temperature �� in Pa, and σdσ/ dT is the surface tension temperature coefficient in N/(m K).In general, surface tension decreases with increasing temperature. A temperature gradient causes a gradient in surface tension that drives the liquid to flow, known as the Marangoni effect.
  6. Metal vapor recoilAt higher input energy densities, the maximum temperature of the molten pool surface reaches the evaporation temperature of the material, and a gasification recoil pressure occurs vertically downward toward the molten pool surface, which will be the dominant driving force for the molten pool flow.75 The expression is as follows:��=0.54�� exp ���−���0���,(15)where �� is the gasification recoil pressure in Pa, �� is the ambient pressure in kPa, �� is the latent heat of evaporation in J/kg, �0 is the gas constant in J/(mol K), T is the surface temperature of the molten pool in K, and Te is the evaporation temperature in K.
  7. Solid–liquid–gas phase transitionWhen the laser hits the powder layer, the powder goes through three stages: heating, melting, and solidification. During the solidification phase, mutual transformations between solid, liquid, and gaseous states occur. At this point, the latent heat of phase transition absorbed or released during the phase transition needs to be considered.68 The phase transition is represented based on the relationship between energy and temperature with the following expression:�=�����,(�<��),�(��)+�−����−����,(��<�<��)�(��)+(�−��)����,(��<�),,(16)where �� and �� are solid and liquid phase density, respectively, of SS316L in kg/m3. �� and �� unit volume of solid and liquid phase-specific heat capacity, respectively, of SS316L in J/(kg K). �� and ��⁠, respectively, are the solidification temperature and melting temperature of SS316L in K. �� is the latent heat of the phase transition of SS316L melting in J/kg.

3. Assumptions

The CFD model was computed using the commercial software package FLOW-3D.76 In order to simplify the calculation and solution process while ensuring the accuracy of the results, the model makes the following assumptions:

  1. It is assumed that the effects of thermal stress and material solid-phase thermal expansion on the calculation results are negligible.
  2. The molten pool flow is assumed to be a Newtonian incompressible laminar flow, while the effects of liquid thermal expansion and density on the results are neglected.
  3. It is assumed that the surface tension can be simplified to an equivalent pressure acting on the free surface of the molten pool, and the effect of chemical composition on the results is negligible.
  4. Neglecting the effect of the gas flow field on the molten pool.
  5. The mass loss due to evaporation of the liquid metal is not considered.
  6. The influence of the plasma effect of the molten metal on the calculation results is neglected.

It is worth noting that the formulation of assumptions requires a trade-off between accuracy and computational efficiency. In the above models, some physical phenomena that have a small effect or high difficulty on the calculation results are simplified or ignored. Such simplifications make numerical simulations more efficient and computationally tractable, while still yielding accurate results.

4. Initial conditions

The preheating temperature of the substrate was set to 393 K, at which time all materials were in the solid state and the flow rate was zero.

5. Material parameters

The material used is SS316L and the relevant parameters required for numerical simulations are shown in Table I.46,77,78

TABLE I.

SS316L-related parameters.

PropertySymbolValue
Density of solid metal (kg/m3�metal 7980 
Solid phase line temperature (K) �� 1658 
Liquid phase line temperature (K) �� 1723 
Vaporization temperature (K) �� 3090 
Latent heat of melting (⁠ J/kg⁠) �� 2.60×105 
Latent heat of evaporation (⁠ J/kg⁠) �� 7.45×106 
Surface tension of liquid phase (N /m⁠) � 1.60 
Liquid metal viscosity (kg/m s) �� 6×10−3 
Gaseous metal viscosity (kg/m s) �gas 1.85×10−5 
Temperature coefficient of surface tension (N/m K) ��/�T 0.80×10−3 
Molar mass (⁠ kg/mol⁠) 0.05 593 
Emissivity � 0.26 
Laser absorption �0 0.35 
Ambient pressure (kPa) �� 101 325 
Ambient temperature (K) �0 300 
Stefan–Boltzmann constant (W/m2 K4� 5.67×10−8 
Thermal conductivity of metals (⁠ W/m K⁠) � 24.55 
Density of protective gas (kg/m3�gas 1.25 
Coefficient of thermal expansion (/K) �� 16×10−6 
Generalized gas constant (⁠ J/mol K⁠) 8.314 

III. RESULTS AND DISCUSSION

With the objective of studying in depth the evolutionary patterns of single-track and double-track molten pool development, detailed observations were made for certain specific locations in the model, as shown in Fig. 6. In this figure, P1 and P2 represent the longitudinal tangents to the centers of the two melt tracks in the XZ plane, while L1 is the transverse profile in the YZ plane. The scanning direction is positive and negative along the X axis. Points A and B are the locations of the centers of the molten pool of the first and second melt tracks, respectively (x = 1.995 × 10−4, y = 5 × 10−7, and z = −4.85 × 10−5).

FIG. 6.

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Schematic diagram of observation position.

A. Single-track simulation

A series of single-track molten pool simulation experiments were carried out in order to investigate the influence law of laser power as well as scanning speed on the HP-LPBF process. Figure 7 demonstrates the evolution of the 3D morphology and temperature field of the single-track molten pool in the time period of 50–500 μs under a laser power of 100 W and a scanning speed of 800 mm/s. The powder bed is in the natural cooling state. When t = 50 μs, the powder is heated by the laser heat and rapidly melts and settles to form the initial molten pool. This process is accompanied by partial melting of the substrate and solidification together with the melted powder. The molten pool rapidly expands with increasing width, depth, length, and temperature, as shown in Fig. 7(a). When t = 150 μs, the molten pool expands more obviously, and the temperature starts to transfer to the surrounding area, forming a heat-affected zone. At this point, the width of the molten pool tends to stabilize, and the temperature in the center of the molten pool has reached its peak and remains largely stable. However, the phenomenon of molten pool spatter was also observed in this process, as shown in Fig. 7(b). As time advances, when t = 300 μs, solidification begins to occur at the tail of the molten pool, and tiny ripples are produced on the solidified surface. This is due to the fact that the melt flows toward the region with large temperature gradient under the influence of Marangoni convection and solidifies together with the melt at the end of the bath. At this point, the temperature gradient at the front of the bath is significantly larger than at the end. While the width of the molten pool was gradually reduced, the shape of the molten pool was gradually changed to a “comet” shape. In addition, a slight depression was observed at the top of the bath because the peak temperature at the surface of the bath reached the evaporation temperature, which resulted in a recoil pressure perpendicular to the surface of the bath downward, creating a depressed region. As the laser focal spot moves and is paired with the Marangoni convection of the melt, these recessed areas will be filled in as shown in Fig. 7(c). It has been shown that the depressed regions are the result of the coupled effect of Marangoni convection, recoil pressure, and surface tension.79 By t = 500 μs, the width and height of the molten pool stabilize and show a “comet” shape in Fig. 7(d).

FIG. 7.

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Single-track molten pool process: (a) t = 50  ��⁠, (b) t = 150  ��⁠, (c) t = 300  ��⁠, (d) t = 500  ��⁠.

Figure 8 depicts the velocity vector diagram of the P1 profile in a single-track molten pool, the length of the arrows represents the magnitude of the velocity, and the maximum velocity is about 2.36 m/s. When t = 50 μs, the molten pool takes shape, and the velocities at the two ends of the pool are the largest. The variation of the velocities at the front end is especially more significant in Fig. 8(a). As the time advances to t = 150 μs, the molten pool expands rapidly, in which the velocity at the tail increases and changes more significantly, while the velocity at the front is relatively small. At this stage, the melt moves backward from the center of the molten pool, which in turn expands the molten pool area. The melt at the back end of the molten pool center flows backward along the edge of the molten pool surface and then converges along the edge of the molten pool to the bottom center, rising to form a closed loop. Similarly, a similar closed loop is formed at the front end of the center of the bath, but with a shorter path. However, a large portion of the melt in the center of the closed loop formed at the front end of the bath is in a nearly stationary state. The main cause of this melt flow phenomenon is the effect of temperature gradient and surface tension (the Marangoni effect), as shown in Figs. 8(b) and 8(e). This dynamic behavior of the melt tends to form an “elliptical” pool. At t = 300 μs, the tendency of the above two melt flows to close the loop is more prominent and faster in Fig. 8(c). When t = 500 μs, the velocity vector of the molten pool shows a stable trend, and the closed loop of melt flow also remains stable. With the gradual laser focal spot movement, the melt is gradually solidified at its tail, and finally, a continuous and stable single track is formed in Fig. 8(d).

FIG. 8.

VIEW LARGEDOWNLOAD SLIDE

Vector plot of single-track molten pool velocity in XZ longitudinal section: (a) t = 50  ��⁠, (b) t = 150  ��⁠, (c) t = 300  ��⁠, (d) t = 500  ��⁠, (e) molten pool flow.

In order to explore in depth the transient evolution of the molten pool, the evolution of the single-track temperature field and the melt flow was monitored in the YZ cross section. Figure 9(a) shows the state of the powder bed at the initial moment. When t = 250 μs, the laser focal spot acts on the powder bed and the powder starts to melt and gradually collects in the molten pool. At this time, the substrate will also start to melt, and the melt flow mainly moves in the downward and outward directions and the velocity is maximum at the edges in Fig. 9(b). When t = 300 μs, the width and depth of the molten pool increase due to the recoil pressure. At this time, the melt flows more slowly at the center, but the direction of motion is still downward in Fig. 9(c). When t = 350 μs, the width and depth of the molten pool further increase, at which time the intensity of the melt flow reaches its peak and the direction of motion remains the same in Fig. 9(d). When t = 400 μs, the melt starts to move upward, and the surrounding powder or molten material gradually fills up, causing the surface of the molten pool to begin to flatten. At this time, the maximum velocity of the melt is at the center of the bath, while the velocity at the edge is close to zero, and the edge of the melt starts to solidify in Fig. 9(e). When t = 450 μs, the melt continues to move upward, forming a convex surface of the melt track. However, the melt movement slows down, as shown in Fig. 9(f). When t = 500 μs, the melt further moves upward and its speed gradually becomes smaller. At the same time, the melt solidifies further, as shown in Fig. 9(g). When t = 550 μs, the melt track is basically formed into a single track with a similar “mountain” shape. At this stage, the velocity is close to zero only at the center of the molten pool, and the flow behavior of the melt is poor in Fig. 9(h). At t = 600 μs, the melt stops moving and solidification is rapidly completed. Up to this point, a single track is formed in Fig. 9(i). During the laser action on the powder bed, the substrate melts and combines with the molten state powder. The powder-to-powder fusion is like the convergence of water droplets, which are rapidly fused by surface tension. However, the fusion between the molten state powder and the substrate occurs driven by surface tension, and the molten powder around the molten pool is pulled toward the substrate (a wetting effect occurs), which ultimately results in the formation of a monolithic whole.38,80,81

FIG. 9.

VIEW LARGEDOWNLOAD SLIDE

Evolution of single-track molten pool temperature and melt flow in the YZ cross section: (a) t = 0  ��⁠, (b) t = 250  ��⁠, (c) t = 300  ��⁠, (d) t = 350  ��⁠, (e) t = 400  ��⁠, (f) t = 450  ��⁠, (g) t = 500  ��⁠, (h) t = 550  ��⁠, (i) t = 600  ��⁠.

The wetting ability between the liquid metal and the solid substrate in the molten pool directly affects the degree of balling of the melt,82,83 and the wetting ability can be measured by the contact angle of a single track in Fig. 10. A smaller value of contact angle represents better wettability. The contact angle α can be calculated by�=�1−�22,

(17)

where �1 and �2 are the contact angles of the left and right regions, respectively.

FIG. 10.

VIEW LARGEDOWNLOAD SLIDE

Schematic of contact angle.

Relevant studies have confirmed that the wettability is better at a contact angle α around or below 40°.84 After measurement, a single-track contact angle α of about 33° was obtained under this process parameter, which further confirms the good wettability.

B. Double-track simulation

In order to deeply investigate the influence of hatch spacing on the characteristics of the HP-LPBF process, a series of double-track molten pool simulation experiments were systematically carried out. Figure 11 shows in detail the dynamic changes of the 3D morphology and temperature field of the double-track molten pool in the time period of 2050–2500 μs under the conditions of laser power of 100 W, scanning speed of 800 mm/s, and hatch spacing of 0.06 mm. By comparing the study with Fig. 7, it is observed that the basic characteristics of the 3D morphology and temperature field of the second track are similar to those of the first track. However, there are subtle differences between them. The first track exhibits a basically symmetric shape, but the second track morphology shows a slight deviation influenced by the difference in thermal diffusion rate between the solidified metal and the powder. Otherwise, the other characteristic information is almost the same as that of the first track. Figure 12 shows the velocity vector plot of the P2 profile in the double-track molten pool, with a maximum velocity of about 2.63 m/s. The melt dynamics at both ends of the pool are more stable at t = 2050 μs, where the maximum rate of the second track is only 1/3 of that of the first one. Other than that, the rest of the information is almost no significant difference from the characteristic information of the first track. Figure 13 demonstrates a detailed observation of the double-track temperature field and melts flow in the YZ cross section, and a comparative study with Fig. 9 reveals that the width of the second track is slightly wider. In addition, after the melt direction shifts from bottom to top, the first track undergoes four time periods (50 μs) to reach full solidification, while the second track takes five time periods. This is due to the presence of significant heat buildup in the powder bed after the forming of the first track, resulting in a longer dynamic time of the melt and an increased molten pool lifetime. In conclusion, the level of specimen forming can be significantly optimized by adjusting the laser power and hatch spacing.

FIG. 11.

VIEW LARGEDOWNLOAD SLIDE

Double-track molten pool process: (a) t = 2050  ��⁠, (b) t = 2150  ��⁠, (c) t = 2300  ��⁠, (d) t = 2500  ��⁠.

FIG. 12.

VIEW LARGEDOWNLOAD SLIDE

Vector plot of double-track molten pool velocity in XZ longitudinal section: (a) t = 2050  ��⁠, (b) t = 2150  ��⁠, (c) t = 2300  ��⁠, (d) t = 2500  ��⁠.

FIG. 13.

VIEW LARGEDOWNLOAD SLIDE

Evolution of double-track molten pool temperature and melt flow in the YZ cross section: (a) t = 2250  ��⁠, (b) t = 2300  ��⁠, (c) t = 2350  ��⁠, (d) t = 2400  ��⁠, (e) t = 2450  ��⁠, (f) t = 2500  ��⁠, (g) t = 2550  ��⁠, (h) t = 2600  ��⁠, (i) t = 2650  ��⁠.

In order to quantitatively detect the molten pool dimensions as well as the remolten region dimensions, the molten pool characterization information in Fig. 14 is constructed by drawing the boundary on the YZ cross section based on the isothermal surface of the liquid phase line. It can be observed that the heights of the first track and second track are basically the same, but the depth of the second track increases relative to the first track. The molten pool width is mainly positively correlated with the laser power as well as the scanning speed (the laser line energy density �⁠). However, the remelted zone width is negatively correlated with the hatch spacing (the overlapping ratio). Overall, the forming quality of the specimens can be directly influenced by adjusting the laser power, scanning speed, and hatch spacing.

FIG. 14.

VIEW LARGEDOWNLOAD SLIDE

Double-track molten pool characterization information on YZ cross section.

In order to study the variation rule of the temperature in the center of the molten pool with time, Fig. 15 demonstrates the temperature variation curves with time for two reference points, A and B. Among them, the red dotted line indicates the liquid phase line temperature of SS316L. From the figure, it can be seen that the maximum temperature at the center of the molten pool in the first track is lower than that in the second track, which is mainly due to the heat accumulation generated after passing through the first track. The maximum temperature gradient was calculated to be 1.69 × 108 K/s. When the laser scanned the first track, the temperature in the center of the molten pool of the second track increased slightly. Similarly, when the laser scanned the second track, a similar situation existed in the first track. Since the temperature gradient in the second track is larger than that in the first track, the residence time of the liquid phase in the molten pool of the first track is longer than that of the second track.

FIG. 15.

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Temperature profiles as a function of time for two reference points A and B.

C. Simulation analysis of molten pool under different process parameters

In order to deeply investigate the effects of various process parameters on the mesoscopic-scale temperature field, molten pool characteristic information and defects of HP-LPBF, numerical simulation experiments on mesoscopic-scale laser power, scanning speed, and hatch spacing of double-track molten pools were carried out.

1. Laser power

Figure 16 shows the effects of different laser power on the morphology and temperature field of the double-track molten pool at a scanning speed of 800 mm/s and a hatch spacing of 0.06 mm. When P = 50 W, a smaller molten pool is formed due to the lower heat generated by the Gaussian light source per unit time. This leads to a smaller track width, which results in adjacent track not lapping properly and the presence of a large number of unmelted powder particles, resulting in an increase in the number of defects, such as pores in the specimen. The surface of the track is relatively flat, and the depth is small. In addition, the temperature gradient before and after the molten pool was large, and the depression location appeared at the biased front end in Fig. 16(a). When P = 100 W, the surface of the track is flat and smooth with excellent lap. Due to the Marangoni effect, the velocity field of the molten pool is in the form of “vortex,” and the melt has good fluidity, and the maximum velocity reaches 2.15 m/s in Fig. 16(b). When P = 200 W, the heat generated by the Gaussian light source per unit time is too large, resulting in the melt rapidly reaching the evaporation temperature, generating a huge recoil pressure, forming a large molten pool, and the surface of the track is obviously raised. The melt movement is intense, especially the closed loop at the center end of the molten pool. At this time, the depth and width of the molten pool are large, leading to the expansion of the remolten region and the increased chance of the appearance of porosity defects in Fig. 16(c). The results show that at low laser power, the surface tension in the molten pool is dominant. At high laser power, recoil pressure is its main role.

FIG. 16.

VIEW LARGEDOWNLOAD SLIDE

Simulation results of double-track molten pool under different laser powers: (a) P = 50 W, (b) P = 100 W, (c) P = 200 W.

Table II shows the effect of different laser powers on the characteristic information of the double-track molten pool at a scanning speed of 800 mm/s and a hatch spacing of 0.06 mm. The negative overlapping ratio in the table indicates that the melt tracks are not lapped, and 26/29 indicates the melt depth of the first track/second track. It can be seen that with the increase in laser power, the melt depth, melt width, melt height, and remelted zone show a gradual increase. At the same time, the overlapping ratio also increases. Especially in the process of laser power from 50 to 200 W, the melting depth and melting width increased the most, which increased nearly 2 and 1.5 times, respectively. Meanwhile, the overlapping ratio also increases with the increase in laser power, which indicates that the melting and fusion of materials are better at high laser power. On the other hand, the dimensions of the molten pool did not change uniformly with the change of laser power. Specifically, the depth-to-width ratio of the molten pool increased from about 0.30 to 0.39 during the increase from 50 to 120 W, which further indicates that the effective heat transfer in the vertical direction is greater than that in the horizontal direction with the increase in laser power. This dimensional response to laser power is mainly affected by the recoil pressure and also by the difference in the densification degree between the powder layer and the metal substrate. In addition, according to the experimental results, the contact angle shows a tendency to increase and then decrease during the process of laser power increase, and always stays within the range of less than 33°. Therefore, in practical applications, it is necessary to select the appropriate laser power according to the specific needs in order to achieve the best processing results.

TABLE II.

Double-track molten pool characterization information at different laser powers.

Laser power (W)Depth (μm)Width (μm)Height (μm)Remolten region (μm)Overlapping ratio (%)Contact angle (°)
50 16 54 11 −10 23 
100 26/29 74 14 18 23.33 33 
200 37/45 116 21 52 93.33 28 

2. Scanning speed

Figure 17 demonstrates the effect of different scanning speeds on the morphology and temperature field of the double-track molten pool at a laser power of 100 W and a hatch spacing of 0.06 mm. With the gradual increase in scanning speed, the surface morphology of the molten pool evolves from circular to elliptical. When � = 200 mm/s, the slow scanning speed causes the material to absorb too much heat, which is very easy to trigger the overburning phenomenon. At this point, the molten pool is larger and the surface morphology is uneven. This situation is consistent with the previously discussed scenario with high laser power in Fig. 17(a). However, when � = 1600 mm/s, the scanning speed is too fast, resulting in the material not being able to absorb sufficient heat, which triggers the powder particles that fail to melt completely to have a direct effect on the bonding of the melt to the substrate. At this time, the molten pool volume is relatively small and the neighboring melt track cannot lap properly. This result is consistent with the previously discussed case of low laser power in Fig. 17(b). Overall, the ratio of the laser power to the scanning speed (the line energy density �⁠) has a direct effect on the temperature field and surface morphology of the molten pool.

FIG. 17.

VIEW LARGEDOWNLOAD SLIDE

Simulation results of double-track molten pool under different scanning speed: (a)  � = 200 mm/s, (b)  � = 1600 mm/s.

Table III shows the effects of different scanning speed on the characteristic information of the double-track molten pool under the condition of laser power of 100 W and hatch spacing of 0.06 mm. It can be seen that the scanning speed has a significant effect on the melt depth, melt width, melt height, remolten region, and overlapping ratio. With the increase in scanning speed, the melt depth, melt width, melt height, remelted zone, and overlapping ratio show a gradual decreasing trend. Among them, the melt depth and melt width decreased faster, while the melt height and remolten region decreased relatively slowly. In addition, when the scanning speed was increased from 200 to 800 mm/s, the decreasing speeds of melt depth and melt width were significantly accelerated, while the decreasing speeds of overlapping ratio were relatively slow. When the scanning speed was further increased to 1600 mm/s, the decreasing speeds of melt depth and melt width were further accelerated, and the un-lapped condition of the melt channel also appeared. In addition, the contact angle increases and then decreases with the scanning speed, and both are lower than 33°. Therefore, when selecting the scanning speed, it is necessary to make reasonable trade-offs according to the specific situation, and take into account the factors of melt depth, melt width, melt height, remolten region, and overlapping ratio, in order to achieve the best processing results.

TABLE III.

Double-track molten pool characterization information at different scanning speeds.

Scanning speed (mm/s)Depth (μm)Width (μm)Height (μm)Remolten region (μm)Overlapping ratio (%)Contact angle (°)
200 55/68 182 19/32 124 203.33 22 
1600 13 50 11 −16.67 31 

3. Hatch spacing

Figure 18 shows the effect of different hatch spacing on the morphology and temperature field of the double-track molten pool under the condition of laser power of 100 W and scanning speed of 800 mm/s. The surface morphology and temperature field of the first track and second track are basically the same, but slightly different. The first track shows a basically symmetric morphology along the scanning direction, while the second track shows a slight offset due to the difference in the heat transfer rate between the solidified material and the powder particles. When the hatch spacing is too small, the overlapping ratio increases and the probability of defects caused by remelting phenomenon grows. When the hatch spacing is too large, the neighboring melt track cannot overlap properly, and the powder particles are not completely melted, leading to an increase in the number of holes. In conclusion, the ratio of the line energy density � to the hatch spacing (the volume energy density E) has a significant effect on the temperature field and surface morphology of the molten pool.

FIG. 18.

VIEW LARGEDOWNLOAD SLIDE

Simulation results of double-track molten pool under different hatch spacings: (a) H = 0.03 mm, (b) H = 0.12 mm.

Table IV shows the effects of different hatch spacing on the characteristic information of the double-track molten pool under the condition of laser power of 100 W and scanning speed of 800 mm/s. It can be seen that the hatch spacing has little effect on the melt depth, melt width, and melt height, but has some effect on the remolten region. With the gradual expansion of hatch spacing, the remolten region shows a gradual decrease. At the same time, the overlapping ratio also decreased with the increase in hatch spacing. In addition, it is observed that the contact angle shows a tendency to increase and then remain stable when the hatch spacing increases, which has a more limited effect on it. Therefore, trade-offs and decisions need to be made on a case-by-case basis when selecting the hatch spacing.

TABLE IV.

Double-track molten pool characterization information at different hatch spacings.

Hatch spacing (mm)Depth (μm)Width (μm)Height (μm)Remolten region (μm)Overlapping ratio (%)Contact angle (°)
0.03 25/27 82 14 59 173.33 30 
0.12 26 78 14 −35 33 

In summary, the laser power, scanning speed, and hatch spacing have a significant effect on the formation of the molten pool, and the correct selection of these three process parameters is crucial to ensure the forming quality. In addition, the melt depth of the second track is slightly larger than that of the first track at higher line energy density � and volume energy density E. This is mainly due to the fact that a large amount of heat accumulation is generated after the first track, forming a larger molten pool volume, which leads to an increase in the melt depth.

D. Simulation analysis of molten pool with powder particle size and laser focal spot diameter

Figure 19 demonstrates the effect of different powder particle sizes and laser focal spot diameters on the morphology and temperature field of the double-track molten pool under a laser power of 100 W, a scanning speed of 800 mm/s, and a hatch spacing of 0.06 mm. In the process of melting coarse powder with small laser focal spot diameter, the laser energy cannot completely melt the larger powder particles, resulting in their partial melting and further generating excessive pore defects. The larger powder particles tend to generate zigzag molten pool edges, which cause an increase in the roughness of the melt track surface. In addition, the molten pool is also prone to generate the present spatter phenomenon, which can directly affect the quality of forming. The volume of the formed molten pool is relatively small, while the melt depth, melt width, and melt height are all smaller relative to the fine powder in Fig. 19(a). In the process of melting fine powders with a large laser focal spot diameter, the laser energy is able to melt the fine powder particles sufficiently, even to the point of overmelting. This results in a large number of fine spatters being generated at the edge of the molten pool, which causes porosity defects in the melt track in Fig. 19(b). In addition, the maximum velocity of the molten pool is larger for large powder particle sizes compared to small powder particle sizes, which indicates that the temperature gradient in the molten pool is larger for large powder particle sizes and the melt motion is more intense. However, the size of the laser focal spot diameter has a relatively small effect on the melt motion. However, a larger focal spot diameter induces a larger melt volume with greater depth, width, and height. In conclusion, a small powder size helps to reduce the surface roughness of the specimen, and a small laser spot diameter reduces the minimum forming size of a single track.

FIG. 19.

VIEW LARGEDOWNLOAD SLIDE

Simulation results of double-track molten pool with different powder particle size and laser focal spot diameter: (a) focal spot = 25 μm, coarse powder, (b) focal spot = 80 μm, fine powder.

Table V shows the maximum temperature gradient at the reference point for different powder sizes and laser focal spot diameters. As can be seen from the table, the maximum temperature gradient is lower than that of HP-LPBF for both coarse powders with a small laser spot diameter and fine powders with a large spot diameter, a phenomenon that leads to an increase in the heat transfer rate of HP-LPBF, which in turn leads to a corresponding increase in the cooling rate and, ultimately, to the formation of finer microstructures.

TABLE V.

Maximum temperature gradient at the reference point for different powder particle sizes and laser focal spot diameters.

Laser power (W)Scanning speed (mm/s)Hatch spacing (mm)Average powder size (μm)Laser focal spot diameter (μm)Maximum temperature gradient (×107 K/s)
100 800 0.06 31.7 25 7.89 
11.5 80 7.11 

IV. CONCLUSIONS

In this study, the geometrical characteristics of 3D coarse and fine powder particles were first calculated using DEM and then numerical simulations of single track and double track in the process of forming SS316L from monolayer HP-LPBF at mesoscopic scale were developed using CFD method. The effects of Marangoni convection, surface tension, recoil pressure, gravity, thermal convection, thermal radiation, and evaporative heat dissipation on the heat and mass transfer in the molten pool were considered in this model. The effects of laser power, scanning speed, and hatch spacing on the dynamics of the single-track and double-track molten pools, as well as on other characteristic information, were investigated. The effects of the powder particle size on the molten pool were investigated comparatively with the laser focal spot diameter. The main conclusions are as follows:

  1. The results show that the temperature gradient at the front of the molten pool is significantly larger than that at the tail, and the molten pool exhibits a “comet” morphology. At the top of the molten pool, there is a slightly concave region, which is the result of the coupling of Marangoni convection, recoil pressure, and surface tension. The melt flow forms two closed loops, which are mainly influenced by temperature gradients and surface tension. This special dynamic behavior of the melt tends to form an “elliptical” molten pool and an almost “mountain” shape in single-track forming.
  2. The basic characteristics of the three-dimensional morphology and temperature field of the second track are similar to those of the first track, but there are subtle differences. The first track exhibits a basically symmetrical shape; however, due to the difference in thermal diffusion rates between the solidified metal and the powder, a slight asymmetry in the molten pool morphology of the second track occurs. After forming through the first track, there is a significant heat buildup in the powder bed, resulting in a longer dynamic time of the melt, which increases the life of the molten pool. The heights of the first track and second track remained essentially the same, but the depth of the second track was greater relative to the first track. In addition, the maximum temperature gradient was 1.69 × 108 K/s during HP-LPBF forming.
  3. At low laser power, the surface tension in the molten pool plays a dominant role. At high laser power, recoil pressure becomes the main influencing factor. With the increase of laser power, the effective heat transfer in the vertical direction is superior to that in the horizontal direction. With the gradual increase of scanning speed, the surface morphology of the molten pool evolves from circular to elliptical. In addition, the scanning speed has a significant effect on the melt depth, melt width, melt height, remolten region, and overlapping ratio. Too large or too small hatch spacing will lead to remelting or non-lap phenomenon, which in turn causes the formation of defects.
  4. When using a small laser focal spot diameter, it is difficult to completely melt large powder particle sizes, resulting in partial melting and excessive porosity generation. At the same time, large powder particles produce curved edges of the molten pool, resulting in increased surface roughness of the melt track. In addition, spatter occurs, which directly affects the forming quality. At small focal spot diameters, the molten pool volume is relatively small, and the melt depth, the melt width, and the melt height are correspondingly small. Taken together, the small powder particle size helps to reduce surface roughness, while the small spot diameter reduces the forming size.

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Effects of ramp slope and discharge on hydraulic performance of submerged hump weirs

Effects of ramp slope and discharge on hydraulic performance of submerged hump weirs

Arash Ahmadi a, Amir H. Azimi b

Abstract

험프 웨어는 수위 제어 및 배출 측정을 위한 기존의 수력 구조물 중 하나입니다. 상류 및 하류 경사로의 경사는 자유 및 침수 흐름 조건 모두에서 험프 웨어의 성능에 영향을 미치는 설계 매개변수입니다.

침수된 험프보의 유출 특성 및 수위 변화에 대한 램프 경사 및 유출의 영향을 조사하기 위해 일련의 수치 시뮬레이션이 수행되었습니다. 1V:1H에서 1V:5H까지의 5개 램프 경사를 다양한 업스트림 방전에서 테스트했습니다.

수치모델의 검증을 위해 수치결과를 실험실 데이터와 비교하였다. 수면수위 예측과 유출계수의 시뮬레이션 불일치는 각각 전체 범위의 ±10%와 ±5% 이내였습니다.

모듈 한계 및 방전 감소 계수의 변화에 대한 램프 경사의 영향을 연구했습니다. 험프보의 경사로 경사가 증가함에 따라 상대적으로 높은 침수율에서 모듈러 한계가 발생함을 알 수 있었다.

침수 시작은 방류 수위를 작은 증분으로 조심스럽게 증가시켜 모델링되었으며 그 결과는 모듈 한계의 고전적인 정의와 비교되었습니다. 램프 경사와 방전이 증가함에 따라 모듈러 한계가 증가하는 것으로 밝혀졌지만, 모듈러 한계의 고전적인 정의는 모듈러 한계가 방전과 무관하다는 것을 나타냅니다.

Hump weir 하류의 속도와 와류장은 램프 경사에 의해 제어되는 와류 구조 형성을 나타냅니다. 에너지 손실은 수치 출력으로부터 계산되었으며 정규화된 에너지 손실은 침수에 따라 선형적으로 감소하는 것으로 나타났습니다.

Hump weirs are amongst conventional hydraulic structures for water level control and discharge measurement. The slope in the upstream and downstream ramps is a design parameter that affects the performance of Hump weirs in both free and submerged flow conditions. A series of numerical simulations was performed to investigate the effects of ramp slope and discharge on discharge characteristics and water level variations of submerged Hump weirs. Five ramp slopes ranging from 1V:1H to 1V:5H were tested at different upstream discharges. The numerical results were compared with the laboratory data for verifications of the numerical model. The simulation discrepancies in prediction of water surface level and discharge coefficient were within ±10 % and ±5 % of the full range, respectively. The effects of ramp slope on variations of modular limit and discharge reduction factor were studied. It was found that the modular limit occurred at relatively higher submergence ratios as the ramp slope in Hump weirs increased. The onset of submergence was modeled by carefully increasing tailwater level with small increments and the results were compared with the classic definition of modular limit. It was found that the modular limit increases with increasing the ramp slope and discharge while the classic definition of modular limit indicated that the modular limit is independent of the discharge. The velocity and vortex fields in the downstream of Hump weirs indicated the formation vortex structure, which is controlled by the ramp slope. The energy losses were calculated from the numerical outputs, and it was found that the normalized energy losses decreased linearly with submergence.

Introduction

Weirs have been utilized predominantly for discharge measurement, flow diversion, and water level control in open channels, irrigation canal, and natural streams due to their simplicity of operation and accuracy. Several research studies have been conducted to determine the head-discharge relationship in weirs as one of the most common hydraulic structures for flow measurement (Rajaratnam and Muralidhar, 1969 [[1], [2], [3]]; Vatankhah, 2010, [[4], [5], [6]]; b [[7], [8], [9]]; Azimi and Seyed Hakim, 2019; Salehi et al., 2019; Salehi and Azimi, 2019, [10]. Weirs in general are classified into two major categories named as sharp-crested weirs and weirs of finite-crest length (Rajaratnam and Muralidhar, 1969; [11]. Sharp-crested weirs are typically used for flow measurement in small irrigation canals and laboratory flumes. In contrast, weirs of finite crest length are more suitable for water level control and flow diversion in rivers and natural streams [7,[12], [13], [14]].

The head-discharge relationship in sharp-crested weirs is developed by employing energy equation between two sections in the upstream and downstream of the weir and integration of the velocity profile at the crest of the weir as:

where Qf is the free flow discharge, B is the channel width, g is the acceleration due to gravity, ho is the water head in free-flow condition, and Cd is the discharge coefficient. Rehbock [15] proposed a linear correlation between discharge coefficient and the ratio of water head, ho, and the weir height, P as Cd = 0.605 + 0.08 (ho/P).

Upstream and/or downstream ramp(s) can be added to sharp-crested weirs to enhance the structural stability of the weir. A sharp-crested weir with upstream and/or downstream ramp(s) are known as triangular weirs in the literature. Triangular weirs with both upstream and downstream ramps are also known as Hump weirs and are first introduced in the experimental study of Bazin [16]. The ramps are constructed upstream and downstream of sharp-crested weirs to enhance the weir’s structural integrity and improve the hydraulic performance of the weir. In free-flow condition, the discharge coefficient of Hump weirs increases with increasing downstream ramp slope but decreases as upstream ramp slope increases (Azimi et al., 2013).

The hydraulic performance of weirs is evaluated in both free and submerged flow conditions. In free flow condition, water freely flows over weirs since the downstream water level is lower than that of the crest level of the weir. Channel blockage or flood in the downstream of weirs can raise the tailwater level, t. As tailwater passes the crest elevation in sharp-crested weirs, the upstream flow decelerates due to the excess pressure force in the downstream and the upstream water level increases. The onset of water level raise due to tailwater raise is called the modular limit. Once the tailwater level passes the modular limit, the weir is submerged. In sharp-crested weirs, the submerged flow regime may occur even before the tailwater reaches the crest elevation [8,14], whereas, in weirs of finite crest length, the upstream water level remains unchanged even if the tailwater raises above the crest elevation and it normally causes submergence once the tailwater level passes the critical depth at the crest of the weir [7,17]. The degree of submergence can be estimated by careful observation of the water surface profile. Observations of water surface at different submergence levels indicated two distinct flow patterns in submerged sharp-crested weirs that was initially classified as impinging jet and surface flow regimes [14]. [8] analyzed the variations of water surface profiles over submerged sharp-crested weirs with different submergence ratios and defined four distinct regimes of impinging jet, surface jump, surface wave, and surface jet.

[18] characterized the onset of submergence by defining the modular limit as a stage when the free flow head increases by +1 mm due to tailwater rise. The definition of modular limit is somewhat arbitrary, and it is difficult to identify for large discharges because the upstream water surface begins to fluctuate. This definition did not consider the effects of channel and weir geometries. The experimental data in triangular weirs and weirs finite-crest length with upstream and downstream ramp(s) revealed that the modular limit varied with the ratio of the free-flow head to the total streamwise length of the weir [17]. Weirs of finite crest length with upstream and downstream ramps are known as embankment weirs in literature [1,19,20] and Azimi et al., 2013) [19]. conducted two series of laboratory experiments to study the hydraulics of submerged embankment weirs with the upstream and downstream ramps of 1V:1H and 1V:2H. Empirical correlations were proposed to directly estimate the flow discharge in submerged embankment weirs for t/h > 0.7 where h is the water head in submerged flow condition. He found that the free flow discharge is a function of upstream water head, but the submerged discharge is a function of submergence level, t/h [21]. studied the hydraulics of four embankment weirs with different weir heights ranging from 0.09 m to 0.36 m. It was found that submerged embankments with a higher ho/P, where P is the height of the weir, have a smaller discharge reduction due to submergence. Effects of crest length in embankment weirs with both upstream and downstream ramps of 1V:2H was studied in both free and submerged flow conditions [1]. It was found that the modular limit in submerged embankment weirs decreased linearly with the relative crest length, Ho/(Ho + L), where Ho is the total head and L is the crest length.

In submerged flow condition, the performance of weirs is quantified by the discharge reduction factor, ψ, which is a ratio of the submerged discharge, Qs, to the corresponding free-flow discharge, Qf, based on the upstream head, h [12]. In submerged-flow conditions, flow discharge can be estimated as:��=���

[1] proposed a formula to predict ψ that could be used for embankment weirs with different crest lengths ranging from 0 to 0.3 m as:�=(1−��)�where n is an exponent varying from 4 to 7 and Yt is the normalized submergence defined as:��=�ℎ−[0.85−(0.5��+�)]1−[0.85−(0.5��+�)]where H is the total upstream head in submerged-flow conditions [7]. proposed a simpler formula to predict ψ for weirs of finite-crest length as:�=[1−(�ℎ)�]�where m and n are exponents varying for different types of weirs. Hakim and Azimi (2017) employed regression analysis to propose values of n = 0.25 and m = 0.28 (ho/L)−2.425 for triangular weirs.

The discharge capacity of weirs decreases in submerged flow condition and the onset of submergence occurs at the modular limit. Therefore, the determination of modular limit in weirs with different geometries is critical to understanding the sensitivity of a particular weir model with tailwater level variations. The available definition of modular limit as when head water raises by +1 mm due to tailwater rise does not consider the effects of channel and weir geometries. Therefore, a new and more accurate definition of modular limit is proposed in this study to consider the effect of other geometry and approaching flow parameters. The second objective of this study is to evaluate the effects of upstream and downstream ramps and ramps slopes on the hydraulic performance of submerged Hump weirs. The flow patterns, velocity distributions, and energy dissipation rates were extracted from validated numerical data to better understand the discharge reduction mechanism in Hump weirs in both free and submerged flow conditions.

Section snippets

Governing equations

Numerical simulation has been employed as an efficient and effective method to analyze free surface flow problems and in particular investigating on the hydraulics of flow over weirs [22]. The weir models were developed in numerical domain and the water pressure and velocity field were simulated by employing the FLOW-3D solver (Flow Science, Inc., Santa Fe, USA). The numerical results were validated with the laboratory measurements and the effects of ramps slopes on the performance of Hump

Verification of numerical model

The experimental observations of Bazin [16,17] were used for model validation in free and submerged flow conditions, respectively. The weir height in the study of Bazin was P = 0.5 m and two ramp slopes of 1V:1H and 1V:2H were tested. The bed and sides of the channel were made of glass, and the roughness distribution of the bed and walls were uniform. The Hump weir models in the study of Seyed Hakim and Azimi (2017) had a weir height of 0.076 m and ramp slopes of 1V:2H in both upstream and

Conclusions

A series of numerical simulations was performed to study the hydraulics and velocity pattern downstream of a Hump weir with symmetrical ramp slopes. Effects of ramp slope and discharge on formation of modular limit and in submerged flow condition were tested by conducting a series of numerical simulations on Hump weirs with ramp slopes varying from 1V:1H to 1V:5H. A comparison between numerical results and experimental data indicated that the proposed numerical model is accurate with a mean

Author contributions

Arash Ahmadi: Software, Validation, Visualization, Writing – original draft. Amir Azimi: Conceptualization, Funding acquisition, Investigation, Project administration, Supervision, Writing – review & editing

Uncited References

[30]; [31]; [32]; [33].

Declaration of competing interest

The authors declare that they have no known competing financial interests or personal relationships that could have appeared to influence the work reported in this paper.

References (33)

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  • P.K. Swamee et al.Viscosity and surface tension effects on rectangular weirsThe ISH Journal of Hydraulic Engineering(2001)
  • R. BaddourHead-discharge equation for the sharp-crested polynomial weirJ. Irrigat. Drain. Eng.(2008)
  • A.R. VatankhahHead-discharge equation for sharp-crested weir with piecewise-linear sidesJ. Irrigat. Drain. Eng.(2012)
  • A.H. Azimi et al.A note on sharp-crested weirs and weirs of finite crest lengthCan. J. Civ. Eng.(2012)
  • A.H. Azimi et al.Discharge characteristics of weirs of finite crest length with upstream and downstream rampsJ. Irrigat. Drain. Eng.(2013)
  • A.H. Azimi et al.Submerged flows over rectangular weirs of finite crest lengthJ. Irrigat. Drain. Eng.(2014)
  • A.H. Azimi et al.Water surface characteristics of submerged rectangular sharp-crested weirsJ. Hydraul. Eng.(2016)
  • M. Bijankhan et al.Experimental study and numerical simulation of inclined rectangular weirsJ. Irrigat. Drain. Eng.(2018)
  • A.H. AzimiAn Introduction to Hydraulic Structure” in Water Engineering Modeling and Mathematic Tools(2021)

Lab-on-a-Chip 시스템의 혈류 역학에 대한 검토: 엔지니어링 관점

Review on Blood Flow Dynamics in Lab-on-a-Chip Systems: An Engineering Perspective

  • Bin-Jie Lai
  • Li-Tao Zhu
  • Zhe Chen*
  • Bo Ouyang*
  • , and 
  • Zheng-Hong Luo*

Abstract

다양한 수송 메커니즘 하에서, “LOC(lab-on-a-chip)” 시스템에서 유동 전단 속도 조건과 밀접한 관련이 있는 혈류 역학은 다양한 수송 현상을 초래하는 것으로 밝혀졌습니다.

본 연구는 적혈구의 동적 혈액 점도 및 탄성 거동과 같은 점탄성 특성의 역할을 통해 LOC 시스템의 혈류 패턴을 조사합니다. 모세관 및 전기삼투압의 주요 매개변수를 통해 LOC 시스템의 혈액 수송 현상에 대한 연구는 실험적, 이론적 및 수많은 수치적 접근 방식을 통해 제공됩니다.

전기 삼투압 점탄성 흐름에 의해 유발되는 교란은 특히 향후 연구 기회를 위해 혈액 및 기타 점탄성 유체를 취급하는 LOC 장치의 혼합 및 분리 기능 향상에 논의되고 적용됩니다. 또한, 본 연구는 보다 정확하고 단순화된 혈류 모델에 대한 요구와 전기역학 효과 하에서 점탄성 유체 흐름에 대한 수치 연구에 대한 강조와 같은 LOC 시스템 하에서 혈류 역학의 수치 모델링의 문제를 식별합니다.

전기역학 현상을 연구하는 동안 제타 전위 조건에 대한 보다 실용적인 가정도 강조됩니다. 본 연구는 모세관 및 전기삼투압에 의해 구동되는 미세유체 시스템의 혈류 역학에 대한 포괄적이고 학제적인 관점을 제공하는 것을 목표로 한다.

KEYWORDS: 

1. Introduction

1.1. Microfluidic Flow in Lab-on-a-Chip (LOC) Systems

Over the past several decades, the ability to control and utilize fluid flow patterns at microscales has gained considerable interest across a myriad of scientific and engineering disciplines, leading to growing interest in scientific research of microfluidics. 

(1) Microfluidics, an interdisciplinary field that straddles physics, engineering, and biotechnology, is dedicated to the behavior, precise control, and manipulation of fluids geometrically constrained to a small, typically submillimeter, scale. 

(2) The engineering community has increasingly focused on microfluidics, exploring different driving forces to enhance working fluid transport, with the aim of accurately and efficiently describing, controlling, designing, and applying microfluidic flow principles and transport phenomena, particularly for miniaturized applications. 

(3) This attention has chiefly been fueled by the potential to revolutionize diagnostic and therapeutic techniques in the biomedical and pharmaceutical sectorsUnder various driving forces in microfluidic flows, intriguing transport phenomena have bolstered confidence in sustainable and efficient applications in fields such as pharmaceutical, biochemical, and environmental science. The “lab-on-a-chip” (LOC) system harnesses microfluidic flow to enable fluid processing and the execution of laboratory tasks on a chip-sized scale. LOC systems have played a vital role in the miniaturization of laboratory operations such as mixing, chemical reaction, separation, flow control, and detection on small devices, where a wide variety of fluids is adapted. Biological fluid flow like blood and other viscoelastic fluids are notably studied among the many working fluids commonly utilized by LOC systems, owing to the optimization in small fluid sample volumed, rapid response times, precise control, and easy manipulation of flow patterns offered by the system under various driving forces. 

(4)The driving forces in blood flow can be categorized as passive or active transport mechanisms and, in some cases, both. Under various transport mechanisms, the unique design of microchannels enables different functionalities in driving, mixing, separating, and diagnosing blood and drug delivery in the blood. 

(5) Understanding and manipulating these driving forces are crucial for optimizing the performance of a LOC system. Such knowledge presents the opportunity to achieve higher efficiency and reliability in addressing cellular level challenges in medical diagnostics, forensic studies, cancer detection, and other fundamental research areas, for applications of point-of-care (POC) devices. 

(6)

1.2. Engineering Approach of Microfluidic Transport Phenomena in LOC Systems

Different transport mechanisms exhibit unique properties at submillimeter length scales in microfluidic devices, leading to significant transport phenomena that differ from those of macroscale flows. An in-depth understanding of these unique transport phenomena under microfluidic systems is often required in fluidic mechanics to fully harness the potential functionality of a LOC system to obtain systematically designed and precisely controlled transport of microfluids under their respective driving force. Fluid mechanics is considered a vital component in chemical engineering, enabling the analysis of fluid behaviors in various unit designs, ranging from large-scale reactors to separation units. Transport phenomena in fluid mechanics provide a conceptual framework for analytically and descriptively explaining why and how experimental results and physiological phenomena occur. The Navier–Stokes (N–S) equation, along with other governing equations, is often adapted to accurately describe fluid dynamics by accounting for pressure, surface properties, velocity, and temperature variations over space and time. In addition, limiting factors and nonidealities for these governing equations should be considered to impose corrections for empirical consistency before physical models are assembled for more accurate controls and efficiency. Microfluidic flow systems often deviate from ideal conditions, requiring adjustments to the standard governing equations. These deviations could arise from factors such as viscous effects, surface interactions, and non-Newtonian fluid properties from different microfluid types and geometrical layouts of microchannels. Addressing these nonidealities supports the refining of theoretical models and prediction accuracy for microfluidic flow behaviors.

The analytical calculation of coupled nonlinear governing equations, which describes the material and energy balances of systems under ideal conditions, often requires considerable computational efforts. However, advancements in computation capabilities, cost reduction, and improved accuracy have made numerical simulations using different numerical and modeling methods a powerful tool for effectively solving these complex coupled equations and modeling various transport phenomena. Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) is a numerical technique used to investigate the spatial and temporal distribution of various flow parameters. It serves as a critical approach to provide insights and reasoning for decision-making regarding the optimal designs involving fluid dynamics, even prior to complex physical model prototyping and experimental procedures. The integration of experimental data, theoretical analysis, and reliable numerical simulations from CFD enables systematic variation of analytical parameters through quantitative analysis, where adjustment to delivery of blood flow and other working fluids in LOC systems can be achieved.

Numerical methods such as the Finite-Difference Method (FDM), Finite-Element-Method (FEM), and Finite-Volume Method (FVM) are heavily employed in CFD and offer diverse approaches to achieve discretization of Eulerian flow equations through filling a mesh of the flow domain. A more in-depth review of numerical methods in CFD and its application for blood flow simulation is provided in Section 2.2.2.

1.3. Scope of the Review

In this Review, we explore and characterize the blood flow phenomena within the LOC systems, utilizing both physiological and engineering modeling approaches. Similar approaches will be taken to discuss capillary-driven flow and electric-osmotic flow (EOF) under electrokinetic phenomena as a passive and active transport scheme, respectively, for blood transport in LOC systems. Such an analysis aims to bridge the gap between physical (experimental) and engineering (analytical) perspectives in studying and manipulating blood flow delivery by different driving forces in LOC systems. Moreover, the Review hopes to benefit the interests of not only blood flow control in LOC devices but also the transport of viscoelastic fluids, which are less studied in the literature compared to that of Newtonian fluids, in LOC systems.

Section 2 examines the complex interplay between viscoelastic properties of blood and blood flow patterns under shear flow in LOC systems, while engineering numerical modeling approaches for blood flow are presented for assistance. Sections 3 and 4 look into the theoretical principles, numerical governing equations, and modeling methodologies for capillary driven flow and EOF in LOC systems as well as their impact on blood flow dynamics through the quantification of key parameters of the two driving forces. Section 5 concludes the characterized blood flow transport processes in LOC systems under these two forces. Additionally, prospective areas of research in improving the functionality of LOC devices employing blood and other viscoelastic fluids and potentially justifying mechanisms underlying microfluidic flow patterns outside of LOC systems are presented. Finally, the challenges encountered in the numerical studies of blood flow under LOC systems are acknowledged, paving the way for further research.

2. Blood Flow Phenomena

ARTICLE SECTIONS

Jump To


2.1. Physiological Blood Flow Behavior

Blood, an essential physiological fluid in the human body, serves the vital role of transporting oxygen and nutrients throughout the body. Additionally, blood is responsible for suspending various blood cells including erythrocytes (red blood cells or RBCs), leukocytes (white blood cells), and thrombocytes (blood platelets) in a plasma medium.Among the cells mentioned above, red blood cells (RBCs) comprise approximately 40–45% of the volume of healthy blood. 

(7) An RBC possesses an inherent elastic property with a biconcave shape of an average diameter of 8 μm and a thickness of 2 μm. This biconcave shape maximizes the surface-to-volume ratio, allowing RBCs to endure significant distortion while maintaining their functionality. 

(8,9) Additionally, the biconcave shape optimizes gas exchange, facilitating efficient uptake of oxygen due to the increased surface area. The inherent elasticity of RBCs allows them to undergo substantial distortion from their original biconcave shape and exhibits high flexibility, particularly in narrow channels.RBC deformability enables the cell to deform from a biconcave shape to a parachute-like configuration, despite minor differences in RBC shape dynamics under shear flow between initial cell locations. As shown in Figure 1(a), RBCs initiating with different resting shapes and orientations displaying display a similar deformation pattern 

(10) in terms of its shape. Shear flow induces an inward bending of the cell at the rear position of the rim to the final bending position, 

(11) resulting in an alignment toward the same position of the flow direction.

Figure 1. Images of varying deformation of RBCs and different dynamic blood flow behaviors. (a) The deforming shape behavior of RBCs at four different initiating positions under the same experimental conditions of a flow from left to right, (10) (b) RBC aggregation, (13) (c) CFL region. (18) Reproduced with permission from ref (10). Copyright 2011 Elsevier. Reproduced with permission from ref (13). Copyright 2022 The Authors, under the terms of the Creative Commons (CC BY 4.0) License https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/. Reproduced with permission from ref (18). Copyright 2019 Elsevier.

The flexible property of RBCs enables them to navigate through narrow capillaries and traverse a complex network of blood vessels. The deformability of RBCs depends on various factors, including the channel geometry, RBC concentration, and the elastic properties of the RBC membrane. 

(12) Both flexibility and deformability are vital in the process of oxygen exchange among blood and tissues throughout the body, allowing cells to flow in vessels even smaller than the original cell size prior to deforming.As RBCs serve as major components in blood, their collective dynamics also hugely affect blood rheology. RBCs exhibit an aggregation phenomenon due to cell to cell interactions, such as adhesion forces, among populated cells, inducing unique blood flow patterns and rheological behaviors in microfluidic systems. For blood flow in large vessels between a diameter of 1 and 3 cm, where shear rates are not high, a constant viscosity and Newtonian behavior for blood can be assumed. However, under low shear rate conditions (0.1 s

–1) in smaller vessels such as the arteries and venules, which are within a diameter of 0.2 mm to 1 cm, blood exhibits non-Newtonian properties, such as shear-thinning viscosity and viscoelasticity due to RBC aggregation and deformability. The nonlinear viscoelastic property of blood gives rise to a complex relationship between viscosity and shear rate, primarily influenced by the highly elastic behavior of RBCs. A wide range of research on the transient behavior of the RBC shape and aggregation characteristics under varied flow circumstances has been conducted, aiming to obtain a better understanding of the interaction between blood flow shear forces from confined flows.

For a better understanding of the unique blood flow structures and rheological behaviors in microfluidic systems, some blood flow patterns are introduced in the following section.

2.1.1. RBC Aggregation

RBC aggregation is a vital phenomenon to be considered when designing LOC devices due to its impact on the viscosity of the bulk flow. Under conditions of low shear rate, such as in stagnant or low flow rate regions, RBCs tend to aggregate, forming structures known as rouleaux, resembling stacks of coins as shown in Figure 1(b). 

(13) The aggregation of RBCs increases the viscosity at the aggregated region, 

(14) hence slowing down the overall blood flow. However, when exposed to high shear rates, RBC aggregates disaggregate. As shear rates continue to increase, RBCs tend to deform, elongating and aligning themselves with the direction of the flow. 

(15) Such a dynamic shift in behavior from the cells in response to the shear rate forms the basis of the viscoelastic properties observed in whole blood. In essence, the viscosity of the blood varies according to the shear rate conditions, which are related to the velocity gradient of the system. It is significant to take the intricate relationship between shear rate conditions and the change of blood viscosity due to RBC aggregation into account since various flow driving conditions may induce varied effects on the degree of aggregation.

2.1.2. Fåhræus-Lindqvist Effect

The Fåhræus–Lindqvist (FL) effect describes the gradual decrease in the apparent viscosity of blood as the channel diameter decreases. 

(16) This effect is attributed to the migration of RBCs toward the central region in the microchannel, where the flow rate is higher, due to the presence of higher pressure and asymmetric distribution of shear forces. This migration of RBCs, typically observed at blood vessels less than 0.3 mm, toward the higher flow rate region contributes to the change in blood viscosity, which becomes dependent on the channel size. Simultaneously, the increase of the RBC concentration in the central region of the microchannel results in the formation of a less viscous region close to the microchannel wall. This region called the Cell-Free Layer (CFL), is primarily composed of plasma. 

(17) The combination of the FL effect and the following CFL formation provides a unique phenomenon that is often utilized in passive and active plasma separation mechanisms, involving branched and constriction channels for various applications in plasma separation using microfluidic systems.

2.1.3. Cell-Free Layer Formation

In microfluidic blood flow, RBCs form aggregates at the microchannel core and result in a region that is mostly devoid of RBCs near the microchannel walls, as shown in Figure 1(c). 

(18) The region is known as the cell-free layer (CFL). The CFL region is often known to possess a lower viscosity compared to other regions within the blood flow due to the lower viscosity value of plasma when compared to that of the aggregated RBCs. Therefore, a thicker CFL region composed of plasma correlates to a reduced apparent whole blood viscosity. 

(19) A thicker CFL region is often established following the RBC aggregation at the microchannel core under conditions of decreasing the tube diameter. Apart from the dependence on the RBC concentration in the microchannel core, the CFL thickness is also affected by the volume concentration of RBCs, or hematocrit, in whole blood, as well as the deformability of RBCs. Given the influence CFL thickness has on blood flow rheological parameters such as blood flow rate, which is strongly dependent on whole blood viscosity, investigating CFL thickness under shear flow is crucial for LOC systems accounting for blood flow.

2.1.4. Plasma Skimming in Bifurcation Networks

The uneven arrangement of RBCs in bifurcating microchannels, commonly termed skimming bifurcation, arises from the axial migration of RBCs within flowing streams. This uneven distribution contributes to variations in viscosity across differing sizes of bifurcating channels but offers a stabilizing effect. Notably, higher flow rates in microchannels are associated with increased hematocrit levels, resulting in higher viscosity compared with those with lower flow rates. Parametric investigations on bifurcation angle, 

(20) thickness of the CFL, 

(21) and RBC dynamics, including aggregation and deformation, 

(22) may alter the varying viscosity of blood and its flow behavior within microchannels.

2.2. Modeling on Blood Flow Dynamics

2.2.1. Blood Properties and Mathematical Models of Blood Rheology

Under different shear rate conditions in blood flow, the elastic characteristics and dynamic changes of the RBC induce a complex velocity and stress relationship, resulting in the incompatibility of blood flow characterization through standard presumptions of constant viscosity used for Newtonian fluid flow. Blood flow is categorized as a viscoelastic non-Newtonian fluid flow where constitutive equations governing this type of flow take into consideration the nonlinear viscometric properties of blood. To mathematically characterize the evolving blood viscosity and the relationship between the elasticity of RBC and the shear blood flow, respectively, across space and time of the system, a stress tensor (τ) defined by constitutive models is often coupled in the Navier–Stokes equation to account for the collective impact of the constant dynamic viscosity (η) and the elasticity from RBCs on blood flow.The dynamic viscosity of blood is heavily dependent on the shear stress applied to the cell and various parameters from the blood such as hematocrit value, plasma viscosity, mechanical properties of the RBC membrane, and red blood cell aggregation rate. The apparent blood viscosity is considered convenient for the characterization of the relationship between the evolving blood viscosity and shear rate, which can be defined by Casson’s law, as shown in eq 1.

𝜇=𝜏0𝛾˙+2𝜂𝜏0𝛾˙⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯√+𝜂�=�0�˙+2��0�˙+�

(1)where τ

0 is the yield stress–stress required to initiate blood flow motion, η is the Casson rheological constant, and γ̇ is the shear rate. The value of Casson’s law parameters under blood with normal hematocrit level can be defined as τ

0 = 0.0056 Pa and η = 0.0035 Pa·s. 

(23) With the known property of blood and Casson’s law parameters, an approximation can be made to the dynamic viscosity under various flow condition domains. The Power Law model is often employed to characterize the dynamic viscosity in relation to the shear rate, since precise solutions exist for specific geometries and flow circumstances, acting as a fundamental standard for definition. The Carreau and Carreau–Yasuda models can be advantageous over the Power Law model due to their ability to evaluate the dynamic viscosity at low to zero shear rate conditions. However, none of the above-mentioned models consider the memory or other elastic behavior of blood and its RBCs. Some other commonly used mathematical models and their constants for the non-Newtonian viscosity property characterization of blood are listed in Table 1 below. 

(24−26)Table 1. Comparison of Various Non-Newtonian Models for Blood Viscosity 

(24−26)

ModelNon-Newtonian ViscosityParameters
Power Law(2)n = 0.61, k = 0.42
Carreau(3)μ0 = 0.056 Pa·s, μ = 0.00345 Pa·s, λ = 3.1736 s, m = 2.406, a = 0.254
Walburn–Schneck(4)C1 = 0.000797 Pa·s, C2 = 0.0608 Pa·s, C3 = 0.00499, C4 = 14.585 g–1, TPMA = 25 g/L
Carreau–Yasuda(5)μ0 = 0.056 Pa·s, μ = 0.00345 Pa·s, λ = 1.902 s, n = 0.22, a = 1.25
Quemada(6)μp = 0.0012 Pa·s, k = 2.07, k0 = 4.33, γ̇c = 1.88 s–1

The blood rheology is commonly known to be influenced by two key physiological factors, namely, the hematocrit value (H

t) and the fibrinogen concentration (c

f), with an average value of 42% and 0.252 gd·L

–1, respectively. Particularly in low shear conditions, the presence of varying fibrinogen concentrations affects the tendency for aggregation and rouleaux formation, while the occurrence of aggregation is contingent upon specific levels of hematocrit. 

(27) The study from Apostolidis et al. 

(28) modifies the Casson model through emphasizing its reliance on hematocrit and fibrinogen concentration parameter values, owing to the extensive knowledge of the two physiological blood parameters.The viscoelastic response of blood is heavily dependent on the elasticity of the RBC, which is defined by the relationship between the deformation and stress relaxation from RBCs under a specific location of shear flow as a function of the velocity field. The stress tensor is usually characterized by constitutive equations such as the Upper-Convected Maxwell Model 

(29) and the Oldroyd-B model 

(30) to track the molecule effects under shear from different driving forces. The prominent non-Newtonian features, such as shear thinning and yield stress, have played a vital role in the characterization of blood rheology, particularly with respect to the evaluation of yield stress under low shear conditions. The nature of stress measurement in blood, typically on the order of 1 mPa, is challenging due to its low magnitude. The occurrence of the CFL complicates the measurement further due to the significant decrease in apparent viscosity near the wall over time and a consequential disparity in viscosity compared to the bulk region.In addition to shear thinning viscosity and yield stress, the formation of aggregation (rouleaux) from RBCs under low shear rates also contributes to the viscoelasticity under transient flow 

(31) and thixotropy 

(32) of whole blood. Given the difficulty in evaluating viscoelastic behavior of blood under low strain magnitudes and limitations in generalized Newtonian models, the utilization of viscoelastic models is advocated to encompass elasticity and delineate non-shear components within the stress tensor. Extending from the Oldroyd-B model, Anand et al. 

(33) developed a viscoelastic model framework for adapting elasticity within blood samples and predicting non-shear stress components. However, to also address the thixotropic effects, the model developed by Horner et al. 

(34) serves as a more comprehensive approach than the viscoelastic model from Anand et al. Thixotropy 

(32) typically occurs from the structural change of the rouleaux, where low shear rate conditions induce rouleaux formation. Correspondingly, elasticity increases, while elasticity is more representative of the isolated RBCs, under high shear rate conditions. The model of Horner et al. 

(34) considers the contribution of rouleaux to shear stress, taking into account factors such as the characteristic time for Brownian aggregation, shear-induced aggregation, and shear-induced breakage. Subsequent advancements in the model from Horner et al. often revolve around refining the three aforementioned key terms for a more substantial characterization of rouleaux dynamics. Notably, this has led to the recently developed mHAWB model 

(35) and other model iterations to enhance the accuracy of elastic and viscoelastic contributions to blood rheology, including the recently improved model suggested by Armstrong et al. 

(36)

2.2.2. Numerical Methods (FDM, FEM, FVM)

Numerical simulation has become increasingly more significant in analyzing the geometry, boundary layers of flow, and nonlinearity of hyperbolic viscoelastic flow constitutive equations. CFD is a powerful and efficient tool utilizing numerical methods to solve the governing hydrodynamic equations, such as the Navier–Stokes (N–S) equation, continuity equation, and energy conservation equation, for qualitative evaluation of fluid motion dynamics under different parameters. CFD overcomes the challenge of analytically solving nonlinear forms of differential equations by employing numerical methods such as the Finite-Difference Method (FDM), Finite-Element Method (FEM), and Finite-Volume Method (FVM) to discretize and solve the partial differential equations (PDEs), allowing for qualitative reproduction of transport phenomena and experimental observations. Different numerical methods are chosen to cope with various transport systems for optimization of the accuracy of the result and control of error during the discretization process.FDM is a straightforward approach to discretizing PDEs, replacing the continuum representation of equations with a set of finite-difference equations, which is typically applied to structured grids for efficient implementation in CFD programs. 

(37) However, FDM is often limited to simple geometries such as rectangular or block-shaped geometries and struggles with curved boundaries. In contrast, FEM divides the fluid domain into small finite grids or elements, approximating PDEs through a local description of physics. 

(38) All elements contribute to a large, sparse matrix solver. However, FEM may not always provide accurate results for systems involving significant deformation and aggregation of particles like RBCs due to large distortion of grids. 

(39) FVM evaluates PDEs following the conservation laws and discretizes the selected flow domain into small but finite size control volumes, with each grid at the center of a finite volume. 

(40) The divergence theorem allows the conversion of volume integrals of PDEs with divergence terms into surface integrals of surface fluxes across cell boundaries. Due to its conservation property, FVM offers efficient outcomes when dealing with PDEs that embody mass, momentum, and energy conservation principles. Furthermore, widely accessible software packages like the OpenFOAM toolbox 

(41) include a viscoelastic solver, making it an attractive option for viscoelastic fluid flow modeling. 

(42)

2.2.3. Modeling Methods of Blood Flow Dynamics

The complexity in the blood flow simulation arises from deformability and aggregation that RBCs exhibit during their interaction with neighboring cells under different shear rate conditions induced by blood flow. Numerical models coupled with simulation programs have been applied as a groundbreaking method to predict such unique rheological behavior exhibited by RBCs and whole blood. The conventional approach of a single-phase flow simulation is often applied to blood flow simulations within large vessels possessing a moderate shear rate. However, such a method assumes the properties of plasma, RBCs and other cellular components to be evenly distributed as average density and viscosity in blood, resulting in the inability to simulate the mechanical dynamics, such as RBC aggregation under high-shear flow field, inherent in RBCs. To accurately describe the asymmetric distribution of RBC and blood flow, multiphase flow simulation, where numerical simulations of blood flows are often modeled as two immiscible phases, RBCs and blood plasma, is proposed. A common assumption is that RBCs exhibit non-Newtonian behavior while the plasma is treated as a continuous Newtonian phase.Numerous multiphase numerical models have been proposed to simulate the influence of RBCs on blood flow dynamics by different assumptions. In large-scale simulations (above the millimeter range), continuum-based methods are wildly used due to their lower computational demands. 

(43) Eulerian multiphase flow simulations offer the solution of a set of conservation equations for each separate phase and couple the phases through common pressure and interphase exchange coefficients. Xu et al. 

(44) utilized the combined finite-discrete element method (FDEM) to replicate the dynamic behavior and distortion of RBCs subjected to fluidic forces, utilizing the Johnson–Kendall–Roberts model 

(45) to define the adhesive forces of cell-to-cell interactions. The iterative direct-forcing immersed boundary method (IBM) is commonly employed in simulations of the fluid–cell interface of blood. This method effectively captures the intricacies of the thin and flexible RBC membranes within various external flow fields. 

(46) The study by Xu et al. 

(44) also adopts this approach to bridge the fluid dynamics and RBC deformation through IBM. Yoon and You utilized the Maxwell model to define the viscosity of the RBC membrane. 

(47) It was discovered that the Maxwell model could represent the stress relaxation and unloading processes of the cell. Furthermore, the reduced flexibility of an RBC under particular situations such as infection is specified, which was unattainable by the Kelvin–Voigt model 

(48) when compared to the Maxwell model in the literature. The Yeoh hyperplastic material model was also adapted to predict the nonlinear elasticity property of RBCs with FEM employed to discretize the RBC membrane using shell-type elements. Gracka et al. 

(49) developed a numerical CFD model with a finite-volume parallel solver for multiphase blood flow simulation, where an updated Maxwell viscoelasticity model and a Discrete Phase Model are adopted. In the study, the adapted IBM, based on unstructured grids, simulates the flow behavior and shape change of the RBCs through fluid-structure coupling. It was found that the hybrid Euler–Lagrange (E–L) approach 

(50) for the development of the multiphase model offered better results in the simulated CFL region in the microchannels.To study the dynamics of individual behaviors of RBCs and the consequent non-Newtonian blood flow, cell-shape-resolved computational models are often adapted. The use of the boundary integral method has become prevalent in minimizing computational expenses, particularly in the exclusive determination of fluid velocity on the surfaces of RBCs, incorporating the option of employing IBM or particle-based techniques. The cell-shaped-resolved method has enabled an examination of cell to cell interactions within complex ambient or pulsatile flow conditions 

(51) surrounding RBC membranes. Recently, Rydquist et al. 

(52) have looked to integrate statistical information from macroscale simulations to obtain a comprehensive overview of RBC behavior within the immediate proximity of the flow through introduction of respective models characterizing membrane shape definition, tension, bending stresses of RBC membranes.At a macroscopic scale, continuum models have conventionally been adapted for assessing blood flow dynamics through the application of elasticity theory and fluid dynamics. However, particle-based methods are known for their simplicity and adaptability in modeling complex multiscale fluid structures. Meshless methods, such as the boundary element method (BEM), smoothed particle hydrodynamics (SPH), and dissipative particle dynamics (DPD), are often used in particle-based characterization of RBCs and the surrounding fluid. By representing the fluid as discrete particles, meshless methods provide insights into the status and movement of the multiphase fluid. These methods allow for the investigation of cellular structures and microscopic interactions that affect blood rheology. Non-confronting mesh methods like IBM can also be used to couple a fluid solver such as FEM, FVM, or the Lattice Boltzmann Method (LBM) through membrane representation of RBCs. In comparison to conventional CFD methods, LBM has been viewed as a favorable numerical approach for solving the N–S equations and the simulation of multiphase flows. LBM exhibits the notable advantage of being amenable to high-performance parallel computing environments due to its inherently local dynamics. In contrast to DPD and SPH where RBC membranes are modeled as physically interconnected particles, LBM employs the IBM to account for the deformation dynamics of RBCs 

(53,54) under shear flows in complex channel geometries. 

(54,55) However, it is essential to acknowledge that the utilization of LBM in simulating RBC flows often entails a significant computational overhead, being a primary challenge in this context. Krüger et al. 

(56) proposed utilizing LBM as a fluid solver, IBM to couple the fluid and FEM to compute the response of membranes to deformation under immersed fluids. This approach decouples the fluid and membranes but necessitates significant computational effort due to the requirements of both meshes and particles.Despite the accuracy of current blood flow models, simulating complex conditions remains challenging because of the high computational load and cost. Balachandran Nair et al. 

(57) suggested a reduced order model of RBC under the framework of DEM, where the RBC is represented by overlapping constituent rigid spheres. The Morse potential force is adapted to account for the RBC aggregation exhibited by cell to cell interactions among RBCs at different distances. Based upon the IBM, the reduced-order RBC model is adapted to simulate blood flow transport for validation under both single and multiple RBCs with a resolved CFD-DEM solver. 

(58) In the resolved CFD-DEM model, particle sizes are larger than the grid size for a more accurate computation of the surrounding flow field. A continuous forcing approach is taken to describe the momentum source of the governing equation prior to discretization, which is different from a Direct Forcing Method (DFM). 

(59) As no body-conforming moving mesh is required, the continuous forcing approach offers lower complexity and reduced cost when compared to the DFM. Piquet et al. 

(60) highlighted the high complexity of the DFM due to its reliance on calculating an additional immersed boundary flux for the velocity field to ensure its divergence-free condition.The fluid–structure interaction (FSI) method has been advocated to connect the dynamic interplay of RBC membranes and fluid plasma within blood flow such as the coupling of continuum–particle interactions. However, such methodology is generally adapted for anatomical configurations such as arteries 

(61,62) and capillaries, 

(63) where both the structural components and the fluid domain undergo substantial deformation due to the moving boundaries. Due to the scope of the Review being blood flow simulation within microchannels of LOC devices without deformable boundaries, the Review of the FSI method will not be further carried out.In general, three numerical methods are broadly used: mesh-based, particle-based, and hybrid mesh–particle techniques, based on the spatial scale and the fundamental numerical approach, mesh-based methods tend to neglect the effects of individual particles, assuming a continuum and being efficient in terms of time and cost. However, the particle-based approach highlights more of the microscopic and mesoscopic level, where the influence of individual RBCs is considered. A review from Freund et al. 

(64) addressed the three numerical methodologies and their respective modeling approaches of RBC dynamics. Given the complex mechanics and the diverse levels of study concerning numerical simulations of blood and cellular flow, a broad spectrum of numerical methods for blood has been subjected to extensive review. 

(64−70) Ye at al. 

(65) offered an extensive review of the application of the DPD, SPH, and LBM for numerical simulations of RBC, while Rathnayaka et al. 

(67) conducted a review of the particle-based numerical modeling for liquid marbles through drawing parallels to the transport of RBCs in microchannels. A comparative analysis between conventional CFD methods and particle-based approaches for cellular and blood flow dynamic simulation can be found under the review by Arabghahestani et al. 

(66) Literature by Li et al. 

(68) and Beris et al. 

(69) offer an overview of both continuum-based models at micro/macroscales and multiscale particle-based models encompassing various length and temporal dimensions. Furthermore, these reviews deliberate upon the potential of coupling continuum-particle methods for blood plasma and RBC modeling. Arciero et al. 

(70) investigated various modeling approaches encompassing cellular interactions, such as cell to cell or plasma interactions and the individual cellular phases. A concise overview of the reviews is provided in Table 2 for reference.

Table 2. List of Reviews for Numerical Approaches Employed in Blood Flow Simulation

ReferenceNumerical methods
Li et al. (2013) (68)Continuum-based modeling (BIM), particle-based modeling (LBM, LB-FE, SPH, DPD)
Freund (2014) (64)RBC dynamic modeling (continuum-based modeling, complementary discrete microstructure modeling), blood flow dynamic modeling (FDM, IBM, LBM, particle-mesh methods, coupled boundary integral and mesh-based methods, DPD)
Ye et al. (2016) (65)DPD, SPH, LBM, coupled IBM-Smoothed DPD
Arciero et al. (2017) (70)LBM, IBM, DPD, conventional CFD Methods (FDM, FVM, FEM)
Arabghahestani et al. (2019) (66)Particle-based methods (LBM, DPD, direct simulation Monte Carlo, molecular dynamics), SPH, conventional CFD methods (FDM, FVM, FEM)
Beris et al. (2021) (69)DPD, smoothed DPD, IBM, LBM, BIM
Rathnayaka (2022) (67)SPH, CG, LBM

3. Capillary Driven Blood Flow in LOC Systems

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3.1. Capillary Driven Flow Phenomena

Capillary driven (CD) flow is a pivotal mechanism in passive microfluidic flow systems 

(9) such as the blood circulation system and LOC systems. 

(71) CD flow is essentially the movement of a liquid to flow against drag forces, where the capillary effect exerts a force on the liquid at the borders, causing a liquid–air meniscus to flow despite gravity or other drag forces. A capillary pressure drops across the liquid–air interface with surface tension in the capillary radius and contact angle. The capillary effect depends heavily on the interaction between the different properties of surface materials. Different values of contact angles can be manipulated and obtained under varying levels of surface wettability treatments to manipulate the surface properties, resulting in different CD blood delivery rates for medical diagnostic device microchannels. CD flow techniques are appealing for many LOC devices, because they require no external energy. However, due to the passive property of liquid propulsion by capillary forces and the long-term instability of surface treatments on channel walls, the adaptability of CD flow in geometrically complex LOC devices may be limited.

3.2. Theoretical and Numerical Modeling of Capillary Driven Blood Flow

3.2.1. Theoretical Basis and Assumptions of Microfluidic Flow

The study of transport phenomena regarding either blood flow driven by capillary forces or externally applied forces under microfluid systems all demands a comprehensive recognition of the significant differences in flow dynamics between microscale and macroscale. The fundamental assumptions and principles behind fluid transport at the microscale are discussed in this section. Such a comprehension will lay the groundwork for the following analysis of the theoretical basis of capillary forces and their role in blood transport in LOC systems.

At the macroscale, fluid dynamics are often strongly influenced by gravity due to considerable fluid mass. However, the high surface to volume ratio at the microscale shifts the balance toward surface forces (e.g., surface tension and viscous forces), much larger than the inertial force. This difference gives rise to transport phenomena unique to microscale fluid transport, such as the prevalence of laminar flow due to a very low Reynolds number (generally lower than 1). Moreover, the fluid in a microfluidic system is often assumed to be incompressible due to the small flow velocity, indicating constant fluid density in both space and time.Microfluidic flow behaviors are governed by the fundamental principles of mass and momentum conservation, which are encapsulated in the continuity equation and the Navier–Stokes (N–S) equation. The continuity equation describes the conservation of mass, while the N–S equation captures the spatial and temporal variations in velocity, pressure, and other physical parameters. Under the assumption of the negligible influence of gravity in microfluidic systems, the continuity equation and the Eulerian representation of the incompressible N–S equation can be expressed as follows:

∇·𝐮⇀=0∇·�⇀=0

(7)

−∇𝑝+𝜇∇2𝐮⇀+∇·𝝉⇀−𝐅⇀=0−∇�+�∇2�⇀+∇·�⇀−�⇀=0

(8)Here, p is the pressure, u is the fluid viscosity, 

𝝉⇀�⇀ represents the stress tensor, and F is the body force exerted by external forces if present.

3.2.2. Theoretical Basis and Modeling of Capillary Force in LOC Systems

The capillary force is often the major driving force to manipulate and transport blood without an externally applied force in LOC systems. Forces induced by the capillary effect impact the free surface of fluids and are represented not directly in the Navier–Stokes equations but through the pressure boundary conditions of the pressure term p. For hydrophilic surfaces, the liquid generally induces a contact angle between 0° and 30°, encouraging the spread and attraction of fluid under a positive cos θ condition. For this condition, the pressure drop becomes positive and generates a spontaneous flow forward. A hydrophobic solid surface repels the fluid, inducing minimal contact. Generally, hydrophobic solids exhibit a contact angle larger than 90°, inducing a negative value of cos θ. Such a value will result in a negative pressure drop and a flow in the opposite direction. The induced contact angle is often utilized to measure the wall exposure of various surface treatments on channel walls where different wettability gradients and surface tension effects for CD flows are established. Contact angles between different interfaces are obtainable through standard values or experimental methods for reference. 

(72)For the characterization of the induced force by the capillary effect, the Young–Laplace (Y–L) equation 

(73) is widely employed. In the equation, the capillary is considered a pressure boundary condition between the two interphases. Through the Y–L equation, the capillary pressure force can be determined, and subsequently, the continuity and momentum balance equations can be solved to obtain the blood filling rate. Kim et al. 

(74) studied the effects of concentration and exposure time of a nonionic surfactant, Silwet L-77, on the performance of a polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) microchannel in terms of plasma and blood self-separation. The study characterized the capillary pressure force by incorporating the Y–L equation and further evaluated the effects of the changing contact angle due to different levels of applied channel wall surface treatments. The expression of the Y–L equation utilized by Kim et al. 

(74) is as follows:

𝑃=−𝜎(cos𝜃b+cos𝜃tℎ+cos𝜃l+cos𝜃r𝑤)�=−�(cos⁡�b+cos⁡�tℎ+cos⁡�l+cos⁡�r�)

(9)where σ is the surface tension of the liquid and θ

bθ

tθ

l, and θ

r are the contact angle values between the liquid and the bottom, top, left, and right walls, respectively. A numerical simulation through Coventor software is performed to evaluate the dynamic changes in the filling rate within the microchannel. The simulation results for the blood filling rate in the microchannel are expressed at a specific time stamp, shown in Figure 2. The results portray an increasing instantaneous filling rate of blood in the microchannel following the decrease in contact angle induced by a higher concentration of the nonionic surfactant treated to the microchannel wall.

Figure 2. Numerical simulation of filling rate of capillary driven blood flow under various contact angle conditions at a specific timestamp. (74) Reproduced with permission from ref (74). Copyright 2010 Elsevier.

When in contact with hydrophilic or hydrophobic surfaces, blood forms a meniscus with a contact angle due to surface tension. The Lucas–Washburn (L–W) equation 

(75) is one of the pioneering theoretical definitions for the position of the meniscus over time. In addition, the L–W equation provides the possibility for research to obtain the velocity of the blood formed meniscus through the derivation of the meniscus position. The L–W equation 

(75) can be shown below:

𝐿(𝑡)=𝑅𝜎cos(𝜃)𝑡2𝜇⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯√�(�)=��⁡cos(�)�2�

(10)Here L(t) represents the distance of the liquid driven by the capillary forces. However, the generalized L–W equation solely assumes the constant physical properties from a Newtonian fluid rather than considering the non-Newtonian fluid behavior of blood. Cito et al. 

(76) constructed an enhanced version of the L–W equation incorporating the power law to consider the RBC aggregation and the FL effect. The non-Newtonian fluid apparent viscosity under the Power Law model is defined as

𝜇=𝑘·(𝛾˙)𝑛−1�=�·(�˙)�−1

(11)where γ̇ is the strain rate tensor defined as 

𝛾˙=12𝛾˙𝑖𝑗𝛾˙𝑗𝑖⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯√�˙=12�˙���˙��. The stress tensor term τ is computed as τ = μγ̇

ij. The updated L–W equation by Cito 

(76) is expressed as

𝐿(𝑡)=𝑅[(𝑛+13𝑛+1)(𝜎cos(𝜃)𝑅𝑘)1/𝑛𝑡]𝑛/𝑛+1�(�)=�[(�+13�+1)(�⁡cos(�)��)1/��]�/�+1

(12)where k is the flow consistency index and n is the power law index, respectively. The power law index, from the Power Law model, characterizes the extent of the non-Newtonian behavior of blood. Both the consistency and power law index rely on blood properties such as hematocrit, the appearance of the FL effect, the formation of RBC aggregates, etc. The updated L–W equation computes the location and velocity of blood flow caused by capillary forces at specified time points within the LOC devices, taking into account the effects of blood flow characteristics such as RBC aggregation and the FL effect on dynamic blood viscosity.Apart from the blood flow behaviors triggered by inherent blood properties, unique flow conditions driven by capillary forces that are portrayed under different microchannel geometries also hold crucial implications for CD blood delivery. Berthier et al. 

(77) studied the spontaneous Concus–Finn condition, the condition to initiate the spontaneous capillary flow within a V-groove microchannel, as shown in Figure 3(a) both experimentally and numerically. Through experimental studies, the spontaneous Concus–Finn filament development of capillary driven blood flow is observed, as shown in Figure 3(b), while the dynamic development of blood flow is numerically simulated through CFD simulation.

Figure 3. (a) Sketch of the cross-section of Berthier’s V-groove microchannel, (b) experimental view of blood in the V-groove microchannel, (78) (c) illustration of the dynamic change of the extension of filament from FLOW 3D under capillary flow at three increasing time intervals. (78) Reproduced with permission from ref (78). Copyright 2014 Elsevier.

Berthier et al. 

(77) characterized the contact angle needed for the initiation of the capillary driving force at a zero-inlet pressure, through the half-angle (α) of the V-groove geometry layout, and its relation to the Concus–Finn filament as shown below:

𝜃<𝜋2−𝛼sin𝛼1+2(ℎ2/𝑤)sin𝛼<cos𝜃{�<�2−�sin⁡�1+2(ℎ2/�)⁡sin⁡�<cos⁡�

(13)Three possible regimes were concluded based on the contact angle value for the initiation of flow and development of Concus–Finn filament:

𝜃>𝜃1𝜃1>𝜃>𝜃0𝜃0no SCFSCF without a Concus−Finn filamentSCF without a Concus−Finn filament{�>�1no SCF�1>�>�0SCF without a Concus−Finn filament�0SCF without a Concus−Finn filament

(14)Under Newton’s Law, the force balance with low Reynolds and Capillary numbers results in the neglect of inertial terms. The force balance between the capillary forces and the viscous force induced by the channel wall is proposed to derive the analytical fluid velocity. This relation between the two forces offers insights into the average flow velocity and the penetration distance function dependent on time. The apparent blood viscosity is defined by Berthier et al. 

(78) through Casson’s law, 

(23) given in eq 1. The research used the FLOW-3D program from Flow Science Inc. software, which solves transient, free-surface problems using the FDM in multiple dimensions. The Volume of Fluid (VOF) method 

(79) is utilized to locate and track the dynamic extension of filament throughout the advancing interface within the channel ahead of the main flow at three progressing time stamps, as depicted in Figure 3(c).

4. Electro-osmotic Flow (EOF) in LOC Systems

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The utilization of external forces, such as electric fields, has significantly broadened the possibility of manipulating microfluidic flow in LOC systems. 

(80) Externally applied electric field forces induce a fluid flow from the movement of ions in fluid terms as the “electro-osmotic flow” (EOF).Unique transport phenomena, such as enhanced flow velocity and flow instability, induced by non-Newtonian fluids, particularly viscoelastic fluids, under EOF, have sparked considerable interest in microfluidic devices with simple or complicated geometries within channels. 

(81) However, compared to the study of Newtonian fluids and even other electro-osmotic viscoelastic fluid flows, the literature focusing on the theoretical and numerical modeling of electro-osmotic blood flow is limited due to the complexity of blood properties. Consequently, to obtain a more comprehensive understanding of the complex blood flow behavior under EOF, theoretical and numerical studies of the transport phenomena in the EOF section will be based on the studies of different viscoelastic fluids under EOF rather than that of blood specifically. Despite this limitation, we believe these studies offer valuable insights that can help understand the complex behavior of blood flow under EOF.

4.1. EOF Phenomena

Electro-osmotic flow occurs at the interface between the microchannel wall and bulk phase solution. When in contact with the bulk phase, solution ions are absorbed or dissociated at the solid–liquid interface, resulting in the formation of a charge layer, as shown in Figure 4. This charged channel surface wall interacts with both negative and positive ions in the bulk sample, causing repulsion and attraction forces to create a thin layer of immobilized counterions, known as the Stern layer. The induced electric potential from the wall gradually decreases with an increase in the distance from the wall. The Stern layer potential, commonly termed the zeta potential, controls the intensity of the electrostatic interactions between mobile counterions and, consequently, the drag force from the applied electric field. Next to the Stern layer is the diffuse mobile layer, mainly composed of a mobile counterion. These two layers constitute the “electrical double layer” (EDL), the thickness of which is directly proportional to the ionic strength (concentration) of the bulk fluid. The relationship between the two parameters is characterized by a Debye length (λ

D), expressed as

𝜆𝐷=𝜖𝑘B𝑇2(𝑍𝑒)2𝑐0⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯√��=��B�2(��)2�0

(15)where ϵ is the permittivity of the electrolyte solution, k

B is the Boltzmann constant, T is the electron temperature, Z is the integer valence number, e is the elementary charge, and c

0 is the ionic density.

Figure 4. Schematic diagram of an electro-osmotic flow in a microchannel with negative surface charge. (82) Reproduced with permission from ref (82). Copyright 2012 Woodhead Publishing.

When an electric field is applied perpendicular to the EDL, viscous drag is generated due to the movement of excess ions in the EDL. Electro-osmotic forces can be attributed to the externally applied electric potential (ϕ) and the zeta potential, the system wall induced potential by charged walls (ψ). As illustrated in Figure 4, the majority of ions in the bulk phase have a uniform velocity profile, except for a shear rate condition confined within an extremely thin Stern layer. Therefore, EOF displays a unique characteristic of a “near flat” or plug flow velocity profile, different from the parabolic flow typically induced by pressure-driven microfluidic flow (Hagen–Poiseuille flow). The plug-shaped velocity profile of the EOF possesses a high shear rate above the Stern layer.Overall, the EOF velocity magnitude is typically proportional to the Debye Length (λ

D), zeta potential, and magnitude of the externally applied electric field, while a more viscous liquid reduces the EOF velocity.

4.2. Modeling on Electro-osmotic Viscoelastic Fluid Flow

4.2.1. Theoretical Basis of EOF Mechanisms

The EOF of an incompressible viscoelastic fluid is commonly governed by the continuity and incompressible N–S equations, as shown in eqs 7 and 8, where the stress tensor and the electrostatic force term are coupled. The electro-osmotic body force term F, representing the body force exerted by the externally applied electric force, is defined as 

𝐹⇀=𝑝𝐸𝐸⇀�⇀=���⇀, where ρ

E and 

𝐸⇀�⇀ are the net electric charge density and the applied external electric field, respectively.Numerous models are established to theoretically study the externally applied electric potential and the system wall induced potential by charged walls. The following Laplace equation, expressed as eq 16, is generally adapted and solved to calculate the externally applied potential (ϕ).

∇2𝜙=0∇2�=0

(16)Ion diffusion under applied electric fields, together with mass transport resulting from convection and diffusion, transports ionic solutions in bulk flow under electrokinetic processes. The Nernst–Planck equation can describe these transport methods, including convection, diffusion, and electro-diffusion. Therefore, the Nernst–Planck equation is used to determine the distribution of the ions within the electrolyte. The electric potential induced by the charged channel walls follows the Poisson–Nernst–Plank (PNP) equation, which can be written as eq 17.

∇·[𝐷𝑖∇𝑛𝑖−𝑢⇀𝑛𝑖+𝑛𝑖𝐷𝑖𝑧𝑖𝑒𝑘𝑏𝑇∇(𝜙+𝜓)]=0∇·[��∇��−�⇀��+����������∇(�+�)]=0

(17)where D

in

i, and z

i are the diffusion coefficient, ionic concentration, and ionic valence of the ionic species I, respectively. However, due to the high nonlinearity and numerical stiffness introduced by different lengths and time scales from the PNP equations, the Poisson–Boltzmann (PB) model is often considered the major simplified method of the PNP equation to characterize the potential distribution of the EDL region in microchannels. In the PB model, it is assumed that the ionic species in the fluid follow the Boltzmann distribution. This model is typically valid for steady-state problems where charge transport can be considered negligible, the EDLs do not overlap with each other, and the intrinsic potentials are low. It provides a simplified representation of the potential distribution in the EDL region. The PB equation governing the EDL electric potential distribution is described as

∇2𝜓=(2𝑒𝑧𝑛0𝜀𝜀0)sinh(𝑧𝑒𝜓𝑘b𝑇)∇2�=(2���0��0)⁡sinh(����b�)

(18)where n

0 is the ion bulk concentration, z is the ionic valence, and ε

0 is the electric permittivity in the vacuum. Under low electric potential conditions, an even further simplified model to illustrate the EOF phenomena is the Debye–Hückel (DH) model. The DH model is derived by obtaining a charge density term by expanding the exponential term of the Boltzmann equation in a Taylor series.

4.2.2. EOF Modeling for Viscoelastic Fluids

Many studies through numerical modeling were performed to obtain a deeper understanding of the effect exhibited by externally applied electric fields on viscoelastic flow in microchannels under various geometrical designs. Bello et al. 

(83) found that methylcellulose solution, a non-Newtonian polymer solution, resulted in stronger electro-osmotic mobility in experiments when compared to the predictions by the Helmholtz–Smoluchowski equation, which is commonly used to define the velocity of EOF of a Newtonian fluid. Being one of the pioneers to identify the discrepancies between the EOF of Newtonian and non-Newtonian fluids, Bello et al. attributed such discrepancies to the presence of a very high shear rate in the EDL, resulting in a change in the orientation of the polymer molecules. Park and Lee 

(84) utilized the FVM to solve the PB equation for the characterization of the electric field induced force. In the study, the concept of fractional calculus for the Oldroyd-B model was adapted to illustrate the elastic and memory effects of viscoelastic fluids in a straight microchannel They observed that fluid elasticity and increased ratio of viscoelastic fluid contribution to overall fluid viscosity had a significant impact on the volumetric flow rate and sensitivity of velocity to electric field strength compared to Newtonian fluids. Afonso et al. 

(85) derived an analytical expression for EOF of viscoelastic fluid between parallel plates using the DH model to account for a zeta potential condition below 25 mV. The study established the understanding of the electro-osmotic viscoelastic fluid flow under low zeta potential conditions. Apart from the electrokinetic forces, pressure forces can also be coupled with EOF to generate a unique fluid flow behavior within the microchannel. Sousa et al. 

(86) analytically studied the flow of a standard viscoelastic solution by combining the pressure gradient force with an externally applied electric force. It was found that, at a near wall skimming layer and the outer layer away from the wall, macromolecules migrating away from surface walls in viscoelastic fluids are observed. In the study, the Phan-Thien Tanner (PTT) constitutive model is utilized to characterize the viscoelastic properties of the solution. The approach is found to be valid when the EDL is much thinner than the skimming layer under an enhanced flow rate. Zhao and Yang 

(87) solved the PB equation and Carreau model for the characterization of the EOF mechanism and non-Newtonian fluid respectively through the FEM. The numerical results depict that, different from the EOF of Newtonian fluids, non-Newtonian fluids led to an increase of electro-osmotic mobility for shear thinning fluids but the opposite for shear thickening fluids.Like other fluid transport driving forces, EOF within unique geometrical layouts also portrays unique transport phenomena. Pimenta and Alves 

(88) utilized the FVM to perform numerical simulations of the EOF of viscoelastic fluids considering the PB equation and the Oldroyd-B model, in a cross-slot and flow-focusing microdevices. It was found that electroelastic instabilities are formed due to the development of large stresses inside the EDL with streamlined curvature at geometry corners. Bezerra et al. 

(89) used the FDM to numerically analyze the vortex formation and flow instability from an electro-osmotic non-Newtonian fluid flow in a microchannel with a nozzle geometry and parallel wall geometry setting. The PNP equation is utilized to characterize the charge motion in the EOF and the PTT model for non-Newtonian flow characterization. A constriction geometry is commonly utilized in blood flow adapted in LOC systems due to the change in blood flow behavior under narrow dimensions in a microchannel. Ji et al. 

(90) recently studied the EOF of viscoelastic fluid in a constriction microchannel connected by two relatively big reservoirs on both ends (as seen in Figure 5) filled with the polyacrylamide polymer solution, a viscoelastic fluid, and an incompressible monovalent binary electrolyte solution KCl.

Figure 5. Schematic diagram of a negatively charged constriction microchannel connected to two reservoirs at both ends. An electro-osmotic flow is induced in the system by the induced potential difference between the anode and cathode. (90) Reproduced with permission from ref (90). Copyright 2021 The Authors, under the terms of the Creative Commons (CC BY 4.0) License https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.

In studying the EOF of viscoelastic fluids, the Oldroyd-B model is often utilized to characterize the polymeric stress tensor and the deformation rate of the fluid. The Oldroyd-B model is expressed as follows:

𝜏=𝜂p𝜆(𝐜−𝐈)�=�p�(�−�)

(19)where η

p, λ, c, and I represent the polymer dynamic viscosity, polymer relaxation time, symmetric conformation tensor of the polymer molecules, and the identity matrix, respectively.A log-conformation tensor approach is taken to prevent convergence difficulty induced by the viscoelastic properties. The conformation tensor (c) in the polymeric stress tensor term is redefined by a new tensor (Θ) based on the natural logarithm of the c. The new tensor is defined as

Θ=ln(𝐜)=𝐑ln(𝚲)𝐑Θ=ln(�)=�⁡ln(�)�

(20)in which Λ is the diagonal matrix and R is the orthogonal matrix.Under the new conformation tensor, the induced EOF of a viscoelastic fluid is governed by the continuity and N–S equations adapting the Oldroyd-B model, which is expressed as

∂𝚯∂𝑡+𝐮·∇𝚯=𝛀Θ−ΘΩ+2𝐁+1𝜆(eΘ−𝐈)∂�∂�+�·∇�=�Θ−ΘΩ+2�+1�(eΘ−�)

(21)where Ω and B represent the anti-symmetric matrix and the symmetric traceless matrix of the decomposition of the velocity gradient tensor ∇u, respectively. The conformation tensor can be recovered by c = exp(Θ). The PB model and Laplace equation are utilized to characterize the charged channel wall induced potential and the externally applied potential.The governing equations are numerically solved through the FVM by RheoTool, 

(42) an open-source viscoelastic EOF solver on the OpenFOAM platform. A SIMPLEC (Semi-Implicit Method for Pressure Linked Equations-Consistent) algorithm was applied to solve the velocity-pressure coupling. The pressure field and velocity field were computed by the PCG (Preconditioned Conjugate Gradient) solver and the PBiCG (Preconditioned Biconjugate Gradient) solver, respectively.Ranging magnitudes of an applied electric field or fluid concentration induce both different streamlines and velocity magnitudes at various locations and times of the microchannel. In the study performed by Ji et al., 

(90) notable fluctuation of streamlines and vortex formation is formed at the upper stream entrance of the constriction as shown in Figure 6(a) and (b), respectively, due to the increase of electrokinetic effect, which is seen as a result of the increase in polymeric stress (τ

xx). 

(90) The contraction geometry enhances the EOF velocity within the constriction channel under high E

app condition (600 V/cm). Such phenomena can be attributed to the dependence of electro-osmotic viscoelastic fluid flow on the system wall surface and bulk fluid properties. 

(91)

Figure 6. Schematic diagram of vortex formation and streamlines of EOF depicting flow instability at (a) 1.71 s and (b) 1.75 s. Spatial distribution of the elastic normal stress at (c) high Eapp condition. Streamline of an electro-osmotic flow under Eapp of 600 V/cm (90) for (d) non-Newtonian and (e) Newtonian fluid through a constriction geometry. Reproduced with permission from ref (90). Copyright 2021 The Authors, under the terms of the Creative Commons (CC BY 4.0) License https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.

As elastic normal stress exceeds the local shear stress, flow instability and vortex formation occur. The induced elastic stress under EOF not only enhances the instability of the flow but often generates an irregular secondary flow leading to strong disturbance. 

(92) It is also vital to consider the effect of the constriction layout of microchannels on the alteration of the field strength within the system. The contraction geometry enhances a larger electric field strength compared with other locations of the channel outside the constriction region, resulting in a higher velocity gradient and stronger extension on the polymer within the viscoelastic solution. Following the high shear flow condition, a higher magnitude of stretch for polymer molecules in viscoelastic fluids exhibits larger elastic stresses and enhancement of vortex formation at the region. 

(93)As shown in Figure 6(c), significant elastic normal stress occurs at the inlet of the constriction microchannel. Such occurrence of a polymeric flow can be attributed to the dominating elongational flow, giving rise to high deformation of the polymers within the viscoelastic fluid flow, resulting in higher elastic stress from the polymers. Such phenomena at the entrance result in the difference in velocity streamline as circled in Figure 6(d) compared to that of the Newtonian fluid at the constriction entrance in Figure 6(e). 

(90) The difference between the Newtonian and polymer solution at the exit, as circled in Figure 6(d) and (e), can be attributed to the extrudate swell effect of polymers 

(94) within the viscoelastic fluid flow. The extrudate swell effect illustrates that, as polymers emerge from the constriction exit, they tend to contract in the flow direction and grow in the normal direction, resulting in an extrudate diameter greater than the channel size. The deformation of polymers within the polymeric flow at both the entrance and exit of the contraction channel facilitates the change in shear stress conditions of the flow, leading to the alteration in streamlines of flows for each region.

4.3. EOF Applications in LOC Systems

4.3.1. Mixing in LOC Systems

Rather than relying on the micromixing controlled by molecular diffusion under low Reynolds number conditions, active mixers actively leverage convective instability and vortex formation induced by electro-osmotic flows from alternating current (AC) or direct current (DC) electric fields. Such adaptation is recognized as significant breakthroughs for promotion of fluid mixing in chemical and biological applications such as drug delivery, medical diagnostics, chemical synthesis, and so on. 

(95)Many researchers proposed novel designs of electro-osmosis micromixers coupled with numerical simulations in conjunction with experimental findings to increase their understanding of the role of flow instability and vortex formation in the mixing process under electrokinetic phenomena. Matsubara and Narumi 

(96) numerically modeled the mixing process in a microchannel with four electrodes on each side of the microchannel wall, which generated a disruption through unstable electro-osmotic vortices. It was found that particle mixing was sensitive to both the convection effect induced by the main and secondary vortex within the micromixer and the change in oscillation frequency caused by the supplied AC voltage when the Reynolds number was varied. Qaderi et al. 

(97) adapted the PNP equation to numerically study the effect of the geometry and zeta potential configuration of the microchannel on the mixing process with a combined electro-osmotic pressure driven flow. It was reported that the application of heterogeneous zeta potential configuration enhances the mixing efficiency by around 23% while the height of the hurdles increases the mixing efficiency at most 48.1%. Cho et al. 

(98) utilized the PB model and Laplace equation to numerically simulate the electro-osmotic non-Newtonian fluid mixing process within a wavy and block layout of microchannel walls. The Power Law model is adapted to describe the fluid rheological characteristic. It was found that shear-thinning fluids possess a higher volumetric flow rate, which could result in poorer mixing efficiency compared to that of Newtonian fluids. Numerous studies have revealed that flow instability and vortex generation, in particular secondary vortices produced by barriers or greater magnitudes of heterogeneous zeta potential distribution, enhance mixing by increasing bulk flow velocity and reducing flow distance.To better understand the mechanism of disturbance formed in the system due to externally applied forces, known as electrokinetic instability, literature often utilize the Rayleigh (Ra) number, 

(1) as described below:

𝑅𝑎𝑣=𝑢ev𝑢eo=(𝛾−1𝛾+1)2𝑊𝛿2𝐸el2𝐻2𝜁𝛿Ra�=�ev�eo=(�−1�+1)2��2�el2�2��

(22)where γ is the conductivity ratio of the two streams and can be written as 

𝛾=𝜎el,H𝜎el,L�=�el,H�el,L. The Ra number characterizes the ratio between electroviscous and electro-osmotic flow. A high Ra

v value often results in good mixing. It is evident that fluid properties such as the conductivity (σ) of the two streams play a key role in the formation of disturbances to enhance mixing in microsystems. At the same time, electrokinetic parameters like the zeta potential (ζ) in the Ra number is critical in the characterization of electro-osmotic velocity and a slip boundary condition at the microchannel wall.To understand the mixing result along the channel, the concentration field can be defined and simulated under the assumption of steady state conditions and constant diffusion coefficient for each of the working fluid within the system through the convection–diffusion equation as below:

∂𝑐𝒊∂𝑡+∇⇀(𝑐𝑖𝑢⇀−𝐷𝑖∇⇀𝑐𝒊)=0∂��∂�+∇⇀(���⇀−��∇⇀��)=0

(23)where c

i is the species concentration of species i and D

i is the diffusion coefficient of the corresponding species.The standard deviation of concentration (σ

sd) can be adapted to evaluate the mixing quality of the system. 

(97) The standard deviation for concentration at a specific portion of the channel may be calculated using the equation below:

𝜎sd=∫10(𝐶∗(𝑦∗)−𝐶m)2d𝑦∗∫10d𝑦∗⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯⎯�sd=∫01(�*(�*)−�m)2d�*∫01d�*

(24)where C*(y*) and C

m are the non-dimensional concentration profile and the mean concentration at the portion, respectively. C* is the non-dimensional concentration and can be calculated as 

𝐶∗=𝐶𝐶ref�*=��ref, where C

ref is the reference concentration defined as the bulk solution concentration. The mean concentration profile can be calculated as 

𝐶m=∫10(𝐶∗(𝑦∗)d𝑦∗∫10d𝑦∗�m=∫01(�*(�*)d�*∫01d�*. With the standard deviation of concentration, the mixing efficiency 

(97) can then be calculated as below:

𝜀𝑥=1−𝜎sd𝜎sd,0��=1−�sd�sd,0

(25)where σ

sd,0 is the standard derivation of the case of no mixing. The value of the mixing efficiency is typically utilized in conjunction with the simulated flow field and concentration field to explore the effect of geometrical and electrokinetic parameters on the optimization of the mixing results.

5. Summary

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5.1. Conclusion

Viscoelastic fluids such as blood flow in LOC systems are an essential topic to proceed with diagnostic analysis and research through microdevices in the biomedical and pharmaceutical industries. The complex blood flow behavior is tightly controlled by the viscoelastic characteristics of blood such as the dynamic viscosity and the elastic property of RBCs under various shear rate conditions. Furthermore, the flow behaviors under varied driving forces promote an array of microfluidic transport phenomena that are critical to the management of blood flow and other adapted viscoelastic fluids in LOC systems. This review addressed the blood flow phenomena, the complicated interplay between shear rate and blood flow behaviors, and their numerical modeling under LOC systems through the lens of the viscoelasticity characteristic. Furthermore, a theoretical understanding of capillary forces and externally applied electric forces leads to an in-depth investigation of the relationship between blood flow patterns and the key parameters of the two driving forces, the latter of which is introduced through the lens of viscoelastic fluids, coupling numerical modeling to improve the knowledge of blood flow manipulation in LOC systems. The flow disturbances triggered by the EOF of viscoelastic fluids and their impact on blood flow patterns have been deeply investigated due to their important role and applications in LOC devices. Continuous advancements of various numerical modeling methods with experimental findings through more efficient and less computationally heavy methods have served as an encouraging sign of establishing more accurate illustrations of the mechanisms for multiphase blood and other viscoelastic fluid flow transport phenomena driven by various forces. Such progress is fundamental for the manipulation of unique transport phenomena, such as the generated disturbances, to optimize functionalities offered by microdevices in LOC systems.

The following section will provide further insights into the employment of studied blood transport phenomena to improve the functionality of micro devices adapting LOC technology. A discussion of the novel roles that external driving forces play in microfluidic flow behaviors is also provided. Limitations in the computational modeling of blood flow and electrokinetic phenomena in LOC systems will also be emphasized, which may provide valuable insights for future research endeavors. These discussions aim to provide guidance and opportunities for new paths in the ongoing development of LOC devices that adapt blood flow.

5.2. Future Directions

5.2.1. Electro-osmosis Mixing in LOC Systems

Despite substantial research, mixing results through flow instability and vortex formation phenomena induced by electro-osmotic mixing still deviate from the effective mixing results offered by chaotic mixing results such as those seen in turbulent flows. However, recent discoveries of a mixing phenomenon that is generally observed under turbulent flows are found within electro-osmosis micromixers under low Reynolds number conditions. Zhao 

(99) experimentally discovered a rapid mixing process in an AC applied micromixer, where the power spectrum of concentration under an applied voltage of 20 V

p-p induces a −5/3 slope within a frequency range. This value of the slope is considered as the O–C spectrum in macroflows, which is often visible under relatively high Re conditions, such as the Taylor microscale Reynolds number Re > 500 in turbulent flows. 

(100) However, the Re value in the studied system is less than 1 at the specific location and applied voltage. A secondary flow is also suggested to occur close to microchannel walls, being attributed to the increase of convective instability within the system.Despite the experimental phenomenon proposed by Zhao et al., 

(99) the range of effects induced by vital parameters of an EOF mixing system on the enhanced mixing results and mechanisms of disturbance generated by the turbulent-like flow instability is not further characterized. Such a gap in knowledge may hinder the adaptability and commercialization of the discovery of micromixers. One of the parameters for further evaluation is the conductivity gradient of the fluid flow. A relatively strong conductivity gradient (5000:1) was adopted in the system due to the conductive properties of the two fluids. The high conductivity gradients may contribute to the relatively large Rayleigh number and differences in EDL layer thickness, resulting in an unusual disturbance in laminar flow conditions and enhanced mixing results. However, high conductivity gradients are not always achievable by the working fluids due to diverse fluid properties. The reliance on turbulent-like phenomena and rapid mixing results in a large conductivity gradient should be established to prevent the limited application of fluids for the mixing system. In addition, the proposed system utilizes distinct zeta potential distributions at the top and bottom walls due to their difference in material choices, which may be attributed to the flow instability phenomena. Further studies should be made on varying zeta potential magnitude and distribution to evaluate their effect on the slip boundary conditions of the flow and the large shear rate condition close to the channel wall of EOF. Such a study can potentially offer an optimized condition in zeta potential magnitude through material choices and geometrical layout of the zeta potential for better mixing results and manipulation of mixing fluid dynamics. The two vital parameters mentioned above can be varied with the aid of numerical simulation to understand the effect of parameters on the interaction between electro-osmotic forces and electroviscous forces. At the same time, the relationship of developed streamlines of the simulated velocity and concentration field, following their relationship with the mixing results, under the impact of these key parameters can foster more insight into the range of impact that the two parameters have on the proposed phenomena and the microfluidic dynamic principles of disturbances.

In addition, many of the current investigations of electrokinetic mixers commonly emphasize the fluid dynamics of mixing for Newtonian fluids, while the utilization of biofluids, primarily viscoelastic fluids such as blood, and their distinctive response under shear forces in these novel mixing processes of LOC systems are significantly less studied. To develop more compatible microdevice designs and efficient mixing outcomes for the biomedical industry, it is necessary to fill the knowledge gaps in the literature on electro-osmotic mixing for biofluids, where properties of elasticity, dynamic viscosity, and intricate relationship with shear flow from the fluid are further considered.

5.2.2. Electro-osmosis Separation in LOC Systems

Particle separation in LOC devices, particularly in biological research and diagnostics, is another area where disturbances may play a significant role in optimization. 

(101) Plasma analysis in LOC systems under precise control of blood flow phenomena and blood/plasma separation procedures can detect vital information about infectious diseases from particular antibodies and foreign nucleic acids for medical treatments, diagnostics, and research, 

(102) offering more efficient results and simple operating procedures compared to that of the traditional centrifugation method for blood and plasma separation. However, the adaptability of LOC devices for blood and plasma separation is often hindered by microchannel clogging, where flow velocity and plasma yield from LOC devices is reduced due to occasional RBC migration and aggregation at the filtration entrance of microdevices. 

(103)It is important to note that the EOF induces flow instability close to microchannel walls, which may provide further solutions to clogging for the separation process of the LOC systems. Mohammadi et al. 

(104) offered an anti-clogging effect of RBCs at the blood and plasma separating device filtration entry, adjacent to the surface wall, through RBC disaggregation under high shear rate conditions generated by a forward and reverse EOF direction.

Further theoretical and numerical research can be conducted to characterize the effect of high shear rate conditions near microchannel walls toward the detachment of binding blood cells on surfaces and the reversibility of aggregation. Through numerical modeling with varying electrokinetic parameters to induce different degrees of disturbances or shear conditions at channel walls, it may be possible to optimize and better understand the process of disrupting the forces that bind cells to surface walls and aggregated cells at filtration pores. RBCs that migrate close to microchannel walls are often attracted by the adhesion force between the RBC and the solid surface originating from the van der Waals forces. Following RBC migration and attachment by adhesive forces adjacent to the microchannel walls as shown in Figure 7, the increase in viscosity at the region causes a lower shear condition and encourages RBC aggregation (cell–cell interaction), which clogs filtering pores or microchannels and reduces flow velocity at filtration region. Both the impact that shear forces and disturbances may induce on cell binding forces with surface walls and other cells leading to aggregation may suggest further characterization. Kinetic parameters such as activation energy and the rate-determining step for cell binding composition attachment and detachment should be considered for modeling the dynamics of RBCs and blood flows under external forces in LOC separation devices.

Figure 7. Schematic representations of clogging at a microchannel pore following the sequence of RBC migration, cell attachment to channel walls, and aggregation. (105) Reproduced with permission from ref (105). Copyright 2018 The Authors under the terms of the Creative Commons (CC BY 4.0) License https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.

5.2.3. Relationship between External Forces and Microfluidic Systems

In blood flow, a thicker CFL suggests a lower blood viscosity, suggesting a complex relationship between shear stress and shear rate, affecting the blood viscosity and blood flow. Despite some experimental and numerical studies on electro-osmotic non-Newtonian fluid flow, limited literature has performed an in-depth investigation of the role that applied electric forces and other external forces could play in the process of CFL formation. Additional studies on how shear rates from external forces affect CFL formation and microfluidic flow dynamics can shed light on the mechanism of the contribution induced by external driving forces to the development of a separate phase of layer, similar to CFL, close to the microchannel walls and distinct from the surrounding fluid within the system, then influencing microfluidic flow dynamics.One of the mechanisms of phenomena to be explored is the formation of the Exclusion Zone (EZ) region following a “Self-Induced Flow” (SIF) phenomenon discovered by Li and Pollack, 

(106) as shown in Figure 8(a) and (b), respectively. A spontaneous sustained axial flow is observed when hydrophilic materials are immersed in water, resulting in the buildup of a negative layer of charges, defined as the EZ, after water molecules absorb infrared radiation (IR) energy and break down into H and OH

+.

Figure 8. Schematic representations of (a) the Exclusion Zone region and (b) the Self Induced Flow through visualization of microsphere movement within a microchannel. (106) Reproduced with permission from ref (106). Copyright 2020 The Authors under the terms of the Creative Commons (CC BY 4.0) License https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.

Despite the finding of such a phenomenon, the specific mechanism and role of IR energy have yet to be defined for the process of EZ development. To further develop an understanding of the role of IR energy in such phenomena, a feasible study may be seen through the lens of the relationships between external forces and microfluidic flow. In the phenomena, the increase of SIF velocity under a rise of IR radiation resonant characteristics is shown in the participation of the external electric field near the microchannel walls under electro-osmotic viscoelastic fluid flow systems. The buildup of negative charges at the hydrophilic surfaces in EZ is analogous to the mechanism of electrical double layer formation. Indeed, research has initiated the exploration of the core mechanisms for EZ formation through the lens of the electrokinetic phenomena. 

(107) Such a similarity of the role of IR energy and the transport phenomena of SIF with electrokinetic phenomena paves the way for the definition of the unknown SIF phenomena and EZ formation. Furthermore, Li and Pollack 

(106) suggest whether CFL formation might contribute to a SIF of blood using solely IR radiation, a commonly available source of energy in nature, as an external driving force. The proposition may be proven feasible with the presence of the CFL region next to the negatively charged hydrophilic endothelial glycocalyx layer, coating the luminal side of blood vessels. 

(108) Further research can dive into the resonating characteristics between the formation of the CFL region next to the hydrophilic endothelial glycocalyx layer and that of the EZ formation close to hydrophilic microchannel walls. Indeed, an increase in IR energy is known to rapidly accelerate EZ formation and SIF velocity, depicting similarity to the increase in the magnitude of electric field forces and greater shear rates at microchannel walls affecting CFL formation and EOF velocity. Such correlation depicts a future direction in whether SIF blood flow can be observed and characterized theoretically further through the lens of the relationship between blood flow and shear forces exhibited by external energy.

The intricate link between the CFL and external forces, more specifically the externally applied electric field, can receive further attention to provide a more complete framework for the mechanisms between IR radiation and EZ formation. Such characterization may also contribute to a greater comprehension of the role IR can play in CFL formation next to the endothelial glycocalyx layer as well as its role as a driving force to propel blood flow, similar to the SIF, but without the commonly assumed pressure force from heart contraction as a source of driving force.

5.3. Challenges

Although there have been significant improvements in blood flow modeling under LOC systems over the past decade, there are still notable constraints that may require special attention for numerical simulation applications to benefit the adaptability of the designs and functionalities of LOC devices. Several points that require special attention are mentioned below:

1.The majority of CFD models operate under the relationship between the viscoelasticity of blood and the shear rate conditions of flow. The relative effect exhibited by the presence of highly populated RBCs in whole blood and their forces amongst the cells themselves under complex flows often remains unclearly defined. Furthermore, the full range of cell populations in whole blood requires a much more computational load for numerical modeling. Therefore, a vital goal for future research is to evaluate a reduced modeling method where the impact of cell–cell interaction on the viscoelastic property of blood is considered.
2.Current computational methods on hemodynamics rely on continuum models based upon non-Newtonian rheology at the macroscale rather than at molecular and cellular levels. Careful considerations should be made for the development of a constructive framework for the physical and temporal scales of micro/nanoscale systems to evaluate the intricate relationship between fluid driving forces, dynamic viscosity, and elasticity.
3.Viscoelastic fluids under the impact of externally applied electric forces often deviate from the assumptions of no-slip boundary conditions due to the unique flow conditions induced by externally applied forces. Furthermore, the mechanism of vortex formation and viscoelastic flow instability at laminar flow conditions should be better defined through the lens of the microfluidic flow phenomenon to optimize the prediction of viscoelastic flow across different geometrical layouts. Mathematical models and numerical methods are needed to better predict such disturbance caused by external forces and the viscoelasticity of fluids at such a small scale.
4.Under practical situations, zeta potential distribution at channel walls frequently deviates from the common assumption of a constant distribution because of manufacturing faults or inherent surface charges prior to the introduction of electrokinetic influence. These discrepancies frequently lead to inconsistent surface potential distribution, such as excess positive ions at relatively more negatively charged walls. Accordingly, unpredicted vortex formation and flow instability may occur. Therefore, careful consideration should be given to these discrepancies and how they could trigger the transport process and unexpected results of a microdevice.

Author Information

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  • Corresponding Authors
    • Zhe Chen – Department of Chemical Engineering, School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, State Key Laboratory of Metal Matrix Composites, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200240, P. R. China;  Email: zaccooky@sjtu.edu.cn
    • Bo Ouyang – Department of Chemical Engineering, School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, State Key Laboratory of Metal Matrix Composites, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200240, P. R. China;  Email: bouy93@sjtu.edu.cn
    • Zheng-Hong Luo – Department of Chemical Engineering, School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, State Key Laboratory of Metal Matrix Composites, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200240, P. R. China;  Orcidhttps://orcid.org/0000-0001-9011-6020; Email: luozh@sjtu.edu.cn
  • Authors
    • Bin-Jie Lai – Department of Chemical Engineering, School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, State Key Laboratory of Metal Matrix Composites, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200240, P. R. China;  Orcidhttps://orcid.org/0009-0002-8133-5381
    • Li-Tao Zhu – Department of Chemical Engineering, School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, State Key Laboratory of Metal Matrix Composites, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200240, P. R. China;  Orcidhttps://orcid.org/0000-0001-6514-8864
  • NotesThe authors declare no competing financial interest.

Acknowledgments

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This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 22238005) and the Postdoctoral Research Foundation of China (No. GZC20231576).

Vocabulary

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Microfluidicsthe field of technological and scientific study that investigates fluid flow in channels with dimensions between 1 and 1000 μm
Lab-on-a-Chip Technologythe field of research and technological development aimed at integrating the micro/nanofluidic characteristics to conduct laboratory processes on handheld devices
Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD)the method utilizing computational abilities to predict physical fluid flow behaviors mathematically through solving the governing equations of corresponding fluid flows
Shear Ratethe rate of change in velocity where one layer of fluid moves past the adjacent layer
Viscoelasticitythe property holding both elasticity and viscosity characteristics relying on the magnitude of applied shear stress and time-dependent strain
Electro-osmosisthe flow of fluid under an applied electric field when charged solid surface is in contact with the bulk fluid
Vortexthe rotating motion of a fluid revolving an axis line

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Fig. 9 From: An Investigation on Hydraulic Aspects of Rectangular Labyrinth Pool and Weir Fishway Using FLOW-3D

An Investigation on Hydraulic Aspects of Rectangular Labyrinth Pool and Weir Fishway Using FLOW-3D

Abstract

웨어의 두 가지 서로 다른 배열(즉, 직선형 웨어와 직사각형 미로 웨어)을 사용하여 웨어 모양, 웨어 간격, 웨어의 오리피스 존재, 흐름 영역에 대한 바닥 경사와 같은 기하학적 매개변수의 영향을 평가했습니다.

유량과 수심의 관계, 수심 평균 속도의 변화와 분포, 난류 특성, 어도에서의 에너지 소산. 흐름 조건에 미치는 영향을 조사하기 위해 FLOW-3D® 소프트웨어를 사용하여 전산 유체 역학 시뮬레이션을 수행했습니다.

수치 모델은 계산된 표면 프로파일과 속도를 문헌의 실험적으로 측정된 값과 비교하여 검증되었습니다. 수치 모델과 실험 데이터의 결과, 급락유동의 표면 프로파일과 표준화된 속도 프로파일에 대한 평균 제곱근 오차와 평균 절대 백분율 오차가 각각 0.014m와 3.11%로 나타나 수치 모델의 능력을 확인했습니다.

수영장과 둑의 흐름 특성을 예측합니다. 각 모델에 대해 L/B = 1.83(L: 웨어 거리, B: 수로 폭) 값에서 급락 흐름이 발생할 수 있고 L/B = 0.61에서 스트리밍 흐름이 발생할 수 있습니다. 직사각형 미로보 모델은 기존 모델보다 무차원 방류량(Q+)이 더 큽니다.

수중 흐름의 기존 보와 직사각형 미로 보의 경우 Q는 각각 1.56과 1.47h에 비례합니다(h: 보 위 수심). 기존 웨어의 풀 내 평균 깊이 속도는 직사각형 미로 웨어의 평균 깊이 속도보다 높습니다.

그러나 주어진 방류량, 바닥 경사 및 웨어 간격에 대해 난류 운동 에너지(TKE) 및 난류 강도(TI) 값은 기존 웨어에 비해 직사각형 미로 웨어에서 더 높습니다. 기존의 웨어는 직사각형 미로 웨어보다 에너지 소산이 더 낮습니다.

더 낮은 TKE 및 TI 값은 미로 웨어 상단, 웨어 하류 벽 모서리, 웨어 측벽과 채널 벽 사이에서 관찰되었습니다. 보와 바닥 경사면 사이의 거리가 증가함에 따라 평균 깊이 속도, 난류 운동 에너지의 평균값 및 난류 강도가 증가하고 수영장의 체적 에너지 소산이 감소했습니다.

둑에 개구부가 있으면 평균 깊이 속도와 TI 값이 증가하고 풀 내에서 가장 높은 TKE 범위가 감소하여 두 모델 모두에서 물고기를 위한 휴식 공간이 더 넓어지고(TKE가 낮아짐) 에너지 소산율이 감소했습니다.

Two different arrangements of the weir (i.e., straight weir and rectangular labyrinth weir) were used to evaluate the effects of geometric parameters such as weir shape, weir spacing, presence of an orifice at the weir, and bed slope on the flow regime and the relationship between discharge and depth, variation and distribution of depth-averaged velocity, turbulence characteristics, and energy dissipation at the fishway. Computational fluid dynamics simulations were performed using FLOW-3D® software to examine the effects on flow conditions. The numerical model was validated by comparing the calculated surface profiles and velocities with experimentally measured values from the literature. The results of the numerical model and experimental data showed that the root-mean-square error and mean absolute percentage error for the surface profiles and normalized velocity profiles of plunging flows were 0.014 m and 3.11%, respectively, confirming the ability of the numerical model to predict the flow characteristics of the pool and weir. A plunging flow can occur at values of L/B = 1.83 (L: distance of the weir, B: width of the channel) and streaming flow at L/B = 0.61 for each model. The rectangular labyrinth weir model has larger dimensionless discharge values (Q+) than the conventional model. For the conventional weir and the rectangular labyrinth weir at submerged flow, Q is proportional to 1.56 and 1.47h, respectively (h: the water depth above the weir). The average depth velocity in the pool of a conventional weir is higher than that of a rectangular labyrinth weir. However, for a given discharge, bed slope, and weir spacing, the turbulent kinetic energy (TKE) and turbulence intensity (TI) values are higher for a rectangular labyrinth weir compared to conventional weir. The conventional weir has lower energy dissipation than the rectangular labyrinth weir. Lower TKE and TI values were observed at the top of the labyrinth weir, at the corner of the wall downstream of the weir, and between the side walls of the weir and the channel wall. As the distance between the weirs and the bottom slope increased, the average depth velocity, the average value of turbulent kinetic energy and the turbulence intensity increased, and the volumetric energy dissipation in the pool decreased. The presence of an opening in the weir increased the average depth velocity and TI values and decreased the range of highest TKE within the pool, resulted in larger resting areas for fish (lower TKE), and decreased the energy dissipation rates in both models.

1 Introduction

Artificial barriers such as detour dams, weirs, and culverts in lakes and rivers prevent fish from migrating and completing the upstream and downstream movement cycle. This chain is related to the life stage of the fish, its location, and the type of migration. Several riverine fish species instinctively migrate upstream for spawning and other needs. Conversely, downstream migration is a characteristic of early life stages [1]. A fish ladder is a waterway that allows one or more fish species to cross a specific obstacle. These structures are constructed near detour dams and other transverse structures that have prevented such migration by allowing fish to overcome obstacles [2]. The flow pattern in fish ladders influences safe and comfortable passage for ascending fish. The flow’s strong turbulence can reduce the fish’s speed, injure them, and delay or prevent them from exiting the fish ladder. In adult fish, spawning migrations are usually complex, and delays are critical to reproductive success [3].

Various fish ladders/fishways include vertical slots, denil, rock ramps, and pool weirs [1]. The choice of fish ladder usually depends on many factors, including water elevation, space available for construction, and fish species. Pool and weir structures are among the most important fish ladders that help fish overcome obstacles in streams or rivers and swim upstream [1]. Because they are easy to construct and maintain, this type of fish ladder has received considerable attention from researchers and practitioners. Such a fish ladder consists of a sloping-floor channel with series of pools directly separated by a series of weirs [4]. These fish ladders, with or without underwater openings, are generally well-suited for slopes of 10% or less [12]. Within these pools, flow velocities are low and provide resting areas for fish after they enter the fish ladder. After resting in the pools, fish overcome these weirs by blasting or jumping over them [2]. There may also be an opening in the flooded portion of the weir through which the fish can swim instead of jumping over the weir. Design parameters such as the length of the pool, the height of the weir, the slope of the bottom, and the water discharge are the most important factors in determining the hydraulic structure of this type of fish ladder [3]. The flow over the weir depends on the flow depth at a given slope S0 and the pool length, either “plunging” or “streaming.” In plunging flow, the water column h over each weir creates a water jet that releases energy through turbulent mixing and diffusion mechanisms [5]. The dimensionless discharges for plunging (Q+) and streaming (Q*) flows are shown in Fig. 1, where Q is the total discharge, B is the width of the channel, w is the weir height, S0 is the slope of the bottom, h is the water depth above the weir, d is the flow depth, and g is the acceleration due to gravity. The maximum velocity occurs near the top of the weir for plunging flow. At the water’s surface, it drops to about half [6].

figure 1
Fig. 1

Extensive experimental studies have been conducted to investigate flow patterns for various physical geometries (i.e., bed slope, pool length, and weir height) [2]. Guiny et al. [7] modified the standard design by adding vertical slots, orifices, and weirs in fishways. The efficiency of the orifices and vertical slots was related to the velocities at their entrances. In the laboratory experiments of Yagci [8], the three-dimensional (3D) mean flow and turbulence structure of a pool weir fishway combined with an orifice and a slot is investigated. It is shown that the energy dissipation per unit volume and the discharge have a linear relationship.

Considering the beneficial characteristics reported in the limited studies of researchers on the labyrinth weir in the pool-weir-type fishway, and knowing that the characteristics of flow in pool-weir-type fishways are highly dependent on the geometry of the weir, an alternative design of the rectangular labyrinth weir instead of the straight weirs in the pool-weir-type fishway is investigated in this study [79]. Kim [10] conducted experiments to compare the hydraulic characteristics of three different weir types in a pool-weir-type fishway. The results show that a straight, rectangular weir with a notch is preferable to a zigzag or trapezoidal weir. Studies on natural fish passes show that pass ability can be improved by lengthening the weir’s crest [7]. Zhong et al. [11] investigated the semi-rigid weir’s hydraulic performance in the fishway’s flow field with a pool weir. The results showed that this type of fishway performed better with a lower invert slope and a smaller radius ratio but with a larger pool spacing.

Considering that an alternative method to study the flow characteristics in a fishway with a pool weir is based on numerical methods and modeling from computational fluid dynamics (CFD), which can easily change the geometry of the fishway for different flow fields, this study uses the powerful package CFD and the software FLOW-3D to evaluate the proposed weir design and compare it with the conventional one to extend the application of the fishway. The main objective of this study was to evaluate the hydraulic performance of the rectangular labyrinth pool and the weir with submerged openings in different hydraulic configurations. The primary objective of creating a new weir configuration for suitable flow patterns is evaluated based on the swimming capabilities of different fish species. Specifically, the following questions will be answered: (a) How do the various hydraulic and geometric parameters relate to the effects of water velocity and turbulence, expressed as turbulent kinetic energy (TKE) and turbulence intensity (TI) within the fishway, i.e., are conventional weirs more affected by hydraulics than rectangular labyrinth weirs? (b) Which weir configurations have the greatest effect on fish performance in the fishway? (c) In the presence of an orifice plate, does the performance of each weir configuration differ with different weir spacing, bed gradients, and flow regimes from that without an orifice plate?

2 Materials and Methods

2.1 Physical Model Configuration

This paper focuses on Ead et al. [6]’s laboratory experiments as a reference, testing ten pool weirs (Fig. 2). The experimental flume was 6 m long, 0.56 m wide, and 0.6 m high, with a bottom slope of 10%. Field measurements were made at steady flow with a maximum flow rate of 0.165 m3/s. Discharge was measured with magnetic flow meters in the inlets and water level with point meters (see Ead et al. [6]. for more details). Table 1 summarizes the experimental conditions considered for model calibration in this study.

figure 2
Fig. 2

Table 1 Experimental conditions considered for calibration

Full size table

2.2 Numerical Models

Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations were performed using FLOW-3D® v11.2 to validate a series of experimental liner pool weirs by Ead et al. [6] and to investigate the effects of the rectangular labyrinth pool weir with an orifice. The dimensions of the channel and data collection areas in the numerical models are the same as those of the laboratory model. Two types of pool weirs were considered: conventional and labyrinth. The proposed rectangular labyrinth pool weirs have a symmetrical cross section and are sized to fit within the experimental channel. The conventional pool weir model had a pool length of l = 0.685 and 0.342 m, a weir height of w = 0.141 m, a weir width of B = 0.56 m, and a channel slope of S0 = 5 and 10%. The rectangular labyrinth weirs have the same front width as the offset, i.e., a = b = c = 0.186 m. A square underwater opening with a width of 0.05 m and a depth of 0.05 m was created in the middle of the weir. The weir configuration considered in the present study is shown in Fig. 3.

figure 3
Fig. 3

2.3 Governing Equations

FLOW-3D® software solves the Navier–Stokes–Reynolds equations for three-dimensional analysis of incompressible flows using the fluid-volume method on a gridded domain. FLOW -3D® uses an advanced free surface flow tracking algorithm (TruVOF) developed by Hirt and Nichols [12], where fluid configurations are defined in terms of a VOF function F (xyzt). In this case, F (fluid fraction) represents the volume fraction occupied by the fluid: F = 1 in cells filled with fluid and F = 0 in cells without fluid (empty areas) [413]. The free surface area is at an intermediate value of F. (Typically, F = 0.5, but the user can specify a different intermediate value.) The equations in Cartesian coordinates (xyz) applicable to the model are as follows:

�f∂�∂�+∂(���x)∂�+∂(���y)∂�+∂(���z)∂�=�SOR

(1)

∂�∂�+1�f(��x∂�∂�+��y∂�∂�+��z∂�∂�)=−1�∂�∂�+�x+�x

(2)

∂�∂�+1�f(��x∂�∂�+��y∂�∂�+��z∂�∂�)=−1�∂�∂�+�y+�y

(3)

∂�∂�+1�f(��x∂�∂�+��y∂�∂�+��z∂�∂�)=−1�∂�∂�+�z+�z

(4)

where (uvw) are the velocity components, (AxAyAz) are the flow area components, (Gx, Gy, Gz) are the mass accelerations, and (fxfyfz) are the viscous accelerations in the directions (xyz), ρ is the fluid density, RSOR is the spring term, Vf is the volume fraction associated with the flow, and P is the pressure. The kε turbulence model (RNG) was used in this study to solve the turbulence of the flow field. This model is a modified version of the standard kε model that improves performance. The model is a two-equation model; the first equation (Eq. 5) expresses the turbulence’s energy, called turbulent kinetic energy (k) [14]. The second equation (Eq. 6) is the turbulent dissipation rate (ε), which determines the rate of dissipation of kinetic energy [15]. These equations are expressed as follows Dasineh et al. [4]:

∂(��)∂�+∂(����)∂��=∂∂��[������∂�∂��]+��−�ε

(5)

∂(�ε)∂�+∂(�ε��)∂��=∂∂��[�ε�eff∂ε∂��]+�1εε��k−�2ε�ε2�

(6)

In these equations, k is the turbulent kinetic energy, ε is the turbulent energy consumption rate, Gk is the generation of turbulent kinetic energy by the average velocity gradient, with empirical constants αε = αk = 1.39, C1ε = 1.42, and C2ε = 1.68, eff is the effective viscosity, μeff = μ + μt [15]. Here, μ is the hydrodynamic density coefficient, and μt is the turbulent density of the fluid.

2.4 Meshing and the Boundary Conditions in the Model Setup

The numerical area is divided into three mesh blocks in the X-direction. The meshes are divided into different sizes, a containing mesh block for the entire spatial domain and a nested block with refined cells for the domain of interest. Three different sizes were selected for each of the grid blocks. By comparing the accuracy of their results based on the experimental data, the reasonable mesh for the solution domain was finally selected. The convergence index method (GCI) evaluated the mesh sensitivity analysis. Based on this method, many researchers, such as Ahmadi et al. [16] and Ahmadi et al. [15], have studied the independence of numerical results from mesh size. Three different mesh sizes with a refinement ratio (r) of 1.33 were used to perform the convergence index method. The refinement ratio is the ratio between the larger and smaller mesh sizes (r = Gcoarse/Gfine). According to the recommendation of Celik et al. [17], the recommended number for the refinement ratio is 1.3, which gives acceptable results. Table 2 shows the characteristics of the three mesh sizes selected for mesh sensitivity analysis.Table 2 Characteristics of the meshes tested in the convergence analysis

Full size table

The results of u1 = umax (u1 = velocity component along the x1 axis and umax = maximum velocity of u1 in a section perpendicular to the invert of the fishway) at Q = 0.035 m3/s, × 1/l = 0.66, and Y1/b = 0 in the pool of conventional weir No. 4, obtained from the output results of the software, were used to evaluate the accuracy of the calculation range. As shown in Fig. 4x1 = the distance from a given weir in the x-direction, Y1 = the water depth measured in the y-direction, Y0 = the vertical distance in the Cartesian coordinate system, h = the water column at the crest, b = the distance between the two points of maximum velocity umax and zero velocity, and l = the pool length.

figure 4
Fig. 4

The apparent index of convergence (p) in the GCI method is calculated as follows:

�=ln⁡(�3−�2)(�2−�1)/ln⁡(�)

(7)

f1f2, and f3 are the hydraulic parameters obtained from the numerical simulation (f1 corresponds to the small mesh), and r is the refinement ratio. The following equation defines the convergence index of the fine mesh:

GCIfine=1.25|ε|��−1

(8)

Here, ε = (f2 − f1)/f1 is the relative error, and f2 and f3 are the values of hydraulic parameters considered for medium and small grids, respectively. GCI12 and GCI23 dimensionless indices can be calculated as:

GCI12=1.25|�2−�1�1|��−1

(9)

Then, the independence of the network is preserved. The convergence index of the network parameters obtained by Eqs. (7)–(9) for all three network variables is shown in Table 3. Since the GCI values for the smaller grid (GCI12) are lower compared to coarse grid (GCI23), it can be concluded that the independence of the grid is almost achieved. No further change in the grid size of the solution domain is required. The calculated values (GCI23/rpGCI12) are close to 1, which shows that the numerical results obtained are within the convergence range. As a result, the meshing of the solution domain consisting of a block mesh with a mesh size of 0.012 m and a block mesh within a larger block mesh with a mesh size of 0.009 m was selected as the optimal mesh (Fig. 5).Table 3 GCI calculation

Full size table

figure 5
Fig. 5

The boundary conditions applied to the area are shown in Fig. 6. The boundary condition of specific flow rate (volume flow rate-Q) was used for the inlet of the flow. For the downstream boundary, the flow output (outflow-O) condition did not affect the flow in the solution area. For the Zmax boundary, the specified pressure boundary condition was used along with the fluid fraction = 0 (P). This type of boundary condition considers free surface or atmospheric pressure conditions (Ghaderi et al. [19]). The wall boundary condition is defined for the bottom of the channel, which acts like a virtual wall without friction (W). The boundary between mesh blocks and walls were considered a symmetrical condition (S).

figure 6
Fig. 6

The convergence of the steady-state solutions was controlled during the simulations by monitoring the changes in discharge at the inlet boundary conditions. Figure 7 shows the time series plots of the discharge obtained from the Model A for the three main discharges from the numerical results. The 8 s to reach the flow equilibrium is suitable for the case of the fish ladder with pool and weir. Almost all discharge fluctuations in the models are insignificant in time, and the flow has reached relative stability. The computation time for the simulations was between 6 and 8 h using a personal computer with eight cores of a CPU (Intel Core i7-7700K @ 4.20 GHz and 16 GB RAM).

figure 7
Fig. 7

3 Results

3.1 Verification of Numerical Results

Quantitative outcomes, including free surface and normalized velocity profiles obtained using FLOW-3D software, were reviewed and compared with the results of Ead et al. [6]. The fourth pool was selected to present the results and compare the experiment and simulation. For each quantity, the percentage of mean absolute error (MAPE (%)) and root-mean-square error (RMSE) are calculated. Equations (10) and (11) show the method used to calculate the errors.

MAPE(%)100×1�∑1�|�exp−�num�exp|

(10)

RMSE(−)1�∑1�(�exp−�num)2

(11)

Here, Xexp is the value of the laboratory data, Xnum is the numerical data value, and n is the amount of data. As shown in Fig. 8, let x1 = distance from a given weir in the x-direction and Y1 = water depth in the y-direction from the bottom. The trend of the surface profiles for each of the numerical results is the same as that of the laboratory results. The surface profiles of the plunging flows drop after the flow enters and then rises to approach the next weir. The RMSE and MAPE error values for Model A are 0.014 m and 3.11%, respectively, indicating acceptable agreement between numerical and laboratory results. Figure 9 shows the velocity vectors and plunging flow from the numerical results, where x and y are horizontal and vertical to the flow direction, respectively. It can be seen that the jet in the fish ladder pool has a relatively high velocity. The two vortices, i.e., the enclosed vortex rotating clockwise behind the weir and the surface vortex rotating counterclockwise above the jet, are observed for the regime of incident flow. The point where the jet meets the fish passage bed is shown in the figure. The normalized velocity profiles upstream and downstream of the impact points are shown in Fig. 10. The figure shows that the numerical results agree well with the experimental data of Ead et al. [6].

figure 8
Fig. 8
figure 9
Fig. 9
figure 10
Fig. 10

3.2 Flow Regime and Discharge-Depth Relationship

Depending on the geometric shape of the fishway, including the distance of the weir, the slope of the bottom, the height of the weir, and the flow conditions, the flow regime in the fishway is divided into three categories: dipping, transitional, and flow regimes [4]. In the plunging flow regime, the flow enters the pool through the weir, impacts the bottom of the fishway, and forms a hydraulic jump causing two eddies [220]. In the streamwise flow regime, the surface of the flow passing over the weir is almost parallel to the bottom of the channel. The transitional regime has intermediate flow characteristics between the submerged and flow regimes. To predict the flow regime created in the fishway, Ead et al. [6] proposed two dimensionless parameters, Qt* and L/w, where Qt* is the dimensionless discharge, L is the distance between weirs, and w is the height of the weir:

��∗=���0���

(12)

Q is the total discharge, B is the width of the channel, S0 is the slope of the bed, and g is the gravity acceleration. Figure 11 shows different ranges for each flow regime based on the slope of the bed and the distance between the pools in this study. The results of Baki et al. [21], Ead et al. [6] and Dizabadi et al. [22] were used for this comparison. The distance between the pools affects the changes in the regime of the fish ladder. So, if you decrease the distance between weirs, the flow regime more likely becomes. This study determined all three flow regimes in a fish ladder. When the corresponding range of Qt* is less than 0.6, the flow regime can dip at values of L/B = 1.83. If the corresponding range of Qt* is greater than 0.5, transitional flow may occur at L/B = 1.22. On the other hand, when Qt* is greater than 1, streamwise flow can occur at values of L/B = 0.61. These observations agree well with the results of Baki et al. [21], Ead et al. [6] and Dizabadi et al. [22].

figure 11
Fig. 11

For plunging flows, another dimensionless discharge (Q+) versus h/w given by Ead et al. [6] was used for further evaluation:

�+=��ℎ�ℎ=23�d�

(13)

where h is the water depth above the weir, and Cd is the discharge coefficient. Figure 12a compares the numerical and experimental results of Ead et al. [6]. In this figure, Rehbock’s empirical equation is used to estimate the discharge coefficient of Ead et al. [6].

�d=0.57+0.075ℎ�

(14)

figure 12
Fig. 12

The numerical results for the conventional weir (Model A) and the rectangular labyrinth weir (Model B) of this study agree well with the laboratory results of Ead et al. [6]. When comparing models A and B, it is also found that a rectangular labyrinth weir has larger Q + values than the conventional weir as the length of the weir crest increases for a given channel width and fixed headwater elevation. In Fig. 12b, Models A and B’s flow depth plot shows the plunging flow regime. The power trend lines drawn through the data are the best-fit lines. The data shown in Fig. 12b are for different bed slopes and weir geometries. For the conventional weir and the rectangular labyrinth weir at submerged flow, Q can be assumed to be proportional to 1.56 and 1.47h, respectively. In the results of Ead et al. [6], Q is proportional to 1.5h. If we assume that the flow through the orifice is Qo and the total outflow is Q, the change in the ratio of Qo/Q to total outflow for models A and B can be shown in Fig. 13. For both models, the flow through the orifice decreases as the total flow increases. A logarithmic trend line was also found between the total outflow and the dimensionless ratio Qo/Q.

figure 13
Fig. 13

3.3 Depth-Averaged Velocity Distributions

To ensure that the target fish species can pass the fish ladder with maximum efficiency, the average velocity in the fish ladder should be low enough [4]. Therefore, the average velocity in depth should be as much as possible below the critical swimming velocities of the target fishes at a constant flow depth in the pool [20]. The contour plot of depth-averaged velocity was used instead of another direction, such as longitudinal velocity because fish are more sensitive to depth-averaged flow velocity than to its direction under different hydraulic conditions. Figure 14 shows the distribution of depth-averaged velocity in the pool for Models A and B in two cases with and without orifice plates. Model A’s velocity within the pool differs slightly in the spanwise direction. However, no significant variation in velocity was observed. The flow is gradually directed to the sides as it passes through the rectangular labyrinth weir. This increases the velocity at the sides of the channel. Therefore, the high-velocity zone is located at the sides. The low velocity is in the downstream apex of the weir. This area may be suitable for swimming target fish. The presence of an opening in the weir increases the flow velocity at the opening and in the pool’s center, especially in Model A. The flow velocity increase caused by the models’ opening varied from 7.7 to 12.48%. Figure 15 illustrates the effect of the inverted slope on the averaged depth velocity distribution in the pool at low and high discharge. At constant discharge, flow velocity increases with increasing bed slope. In general, high flow velocity was found in the weir toe sidewall and the weir and channel sidewalls.

figure 14
Fig. 14
figure 15
Fig. 15

On the other hand, for a constant bed slope, the high-velocity area of the pool increases due to the increase in runoff. For both bed slopes and different discharges, the most appropriate path for fish to travel from upstream to downstream is through the middle of the cross section and along the top of the rectangular labyrinth weirs. The maximum dominant velocities for Model B at S0 = 5% were 0.83 and 1.01 m/s; at S0 = 10%, they were 1.12 and 1.61 m/s at low and high flows, respectively. The low mean velocities for the same distance and S0 = 5 and 10% were 0.17 and 0.26 m/s, respectively.

Figure 16 shows the contour of the averaged depth velocity for various distances from the weir at low and high discharge. The contour plot shows a large variation in velocity within short distances from the weir. At L/B = 0.61, velocities are low upstream and downstream of the top of the weir. The high velocities occur in the side walls of the weir and the channel. At L/B = 1.22, the low-velocity zone displaces the higher velocity in most of the pool. Higher velocities were found only on the sides of the channel. As the discharge increases, the velocity zone in the pool becomes wider. At L/B = 1.83, there is an area of higher velocities only upstream of the crest and on the sides of the weir. At high discharge, the prevailing maximum velocities for L/B = 0.61, 1.22, and 1.83 were 1.46, 1.65, and 1.84 m/s, respectively. As the distance between weirs increases, the range of maximum velocity increases.

figure 16
Fig. 16

On the other hand, the low mean velocity for these distances was 0.27, 0.44, and 0.72 m/s, respectively. Thus, the low-velocity zone decreases with increasing distance between weirs. Figure 17 shows the pattern distribution of streamlines along with the velocity contour at various distances from the weir for Q = 0.05 m3/s. A stream-like flow is generally formed in the pool at a small distance between weirs (L/B = 0.61). The rotation cell under the jet forms clockwise between the two weirs. At the distances between the spillways (L/B = 1.22), the transition regime of the flow is formed. The transition regime occurs when or shortly after the weir is flooded. The rotation cell under the jet is clockwise smaller than the flow regime and larger than the submergence regime. At a distance L/B = 1.83, a plunging flow is formed so that the plunging jet dips into the pool and extends downstream to the center of the pool. The clockwise rotation of the cell is bounded by the dipping jet of the weir and is located between the bottom and the side walls of the weir and the channel.

figure 17
Fig. 17

Figure 18 shows the average depth velocity bar graph for each weir at different bed slopes and with and without orifice plates. As the distance between weirs increases, all models’ average depth velocity increases. As the slope of the bottom increases and an orifice plate is present, the average depth velocity in the pool increases. In addition, the average pool depth velocity increases as the discharge increases. Among the models, Model A’s average depth velocity is higher than Model B’s. The variation in velocity ranged from 8.11 to 12.24% for the models without an orifice plate and from 10.26 to 16.87% for the models with an orifice plate.

figure 18
Fig. 18

3.4 Turbulence Characteristics

The turbulent kinetic energy is one of the important parameters reflecting the turbulent properties of the flow field [23]. When the k value is high, more energy and a longer transit time are required to migrate the target species. The turbulent kinetic energy is defined as follows:

�=12(�x′2+�y′2+�z′2)

(15)

where uxuy, and uz are fluctuating velocities in the xy, and z directions, respectively. An illustration of the TKE and the effects of the geometric arrangement of the weir and the presence of an opening in the weir is shown in Fig. 19. For a given bed slope, in Model A, the highest TKE values are uniformly distributed in the weir’s upstream portion in the channel’s cross section. In contrast, for the rectangular labyrinth weir (Model B), the highest TKE values are concentrated on the sides of the pool between the crest of the weir and the channel wall. The highest TKE value in Models A and B is 0.224 and 0.278 J/kg, respectively, at the highest bottom slope (S0 = 10%). In the downstream portion of the conventional weir and within the crest of the weir and the walls of the rectangular labyrinth, there was a much lower TKE value that provided the best conditions for fish to recover in the pool between the weirs. The average of the lowest TKE for bottom slopes of 5 and 10% in Model A is 0.041 and 0.056 J/kg, and for Model B, is 0.047 and 0.064 J/kg. The presence of an opening in the weirs reduces the area of the highest TKE within the pool. It also increases the resting areas for fish (lower TKE). The highest TKE at the highest bottom slope in Models A and B with an orifice is 0.208 and 0.191 J/kg, respectively.

figure 19
Fig. 19

Figure 20 shows the effect of slope on the longitudinal distribution of TKE in the pools. TKE values significantly increase for a given discharge with an increasing bottom slope. Thus, for a low bed slope (S0 = 5%), a large pool area has expanded with average values of 0.131 and 0.168 J/kg for low and high discharge, respectively. For a bed slope of S0 = 10%, the average TKE values are 0.176 and 0.234 J/kg. Furthermore, as the discharge increases, the area with high TKE values within the pool increases. Lower TKE values are observed at the apex of the labyrinth weir, at the corner of the wall downstream of the weir, and between the side walls of the weir and the channel wall for both bottom slopes. The effect of distance between weirs on TKE is shown in Fig. 21. Low TKE values were observed at low discharge and short distances between weirs. Low TKE values are located at the top of the rectangular labyrinth weir and the downstream corner of the weir wall. There is a maximum value of TKE at the large distances between weirs, L/B = 1.83, along the center line of the pool, where the dip jet meets the bottom of the bed. At high discharge, the maximum TKE value for the distance L/B = 0.61, 1.22, and 1.83 was 0.246, 0.322, and 0.417 J/kg, respectively. In addition, the maximum TKE range increases with the distance between weirs.

figure 20
Fig. 20
figure 21
Fig. 21

For TKE size, the average value (TKEave) is plotted against q in Fig. 22. For all models, the TKE values increase with increasing q. For example, in models A and B with L/B = 0.61 and a slope of 10%, the TKE value increases by 41.66 and 86.95%, respectively, as q increases from 0.1 to 0.27 m2/s. The TKE values in Model B are higher than Model A for a given discharge, bed slope, and weir distance. The TKEave in Model B is higher compared to Model A, ranging from 31.46 to 57.94%. The presence of an orifice in the weir reduces the TKE values in both weirs. The intensity of the reduction is greater in Model B. For example, in Models A and B with L/B = 0.61 and q = 0.1 m2/s, an orifice reduces TKEave values by 60.35 and 19.04%, respectively. For each model, increasing the bed slope increases the TKEave values in the pool. For example, for Model B with q = 0.18 m2/s, increasing the bed slope from 5 to 10% increases the TKEave value by 14.34%. Increasing the distance between weirs increases the TKEave values in the pool. For example, in Model B with S0 = 10% and q = 0.3 m2/s, the TKEave in the pool increases by 34.22% if you increase the distance between weirs from L/B = 0.61 to L/B = 0.183.

figure 22
Fig. 22

Cotel et al. [24] suggested that turbulence intensity (TI) is a suitable parameter for studying fish swimming performance. Figure 23 shows the plot of TI and the effects of the geometric arrangement of the weir and the presence of an orifice. In Model A, the highest TI values are found upstream of the weirs and are evenly distributed across the cross section of the channel. The TI values increase as you move upstream to downstream in the pool. For the rectangular labyrinth weir, the highest TI values were concentrated on the sides of the pool, between the top of the weir and the side wall of the channel, and along the top of the weir. Downstream of the conventional weir, within the apex of the weir, and at the corners of the walls of the rectangular labyrinth weir, the percentage of TI was low. At the highest discharge, the average range of TI in Models A and B was 24–45% and 15–62%, respectively. The diversity of TI is greater in the rectangular labyrinth weir than the conventional weir. Fish swimming performance is reduced due to higher turbulence intensity. However, fish species may prefer different disturbance intensities depending on their swimming abilities; for example, Salmo trutta prefers a disturbance intensity of 18–53% [25]. Kupferschmidt and Zhu [26] found a higher range of TI for fishways, such as natural rock weirs, of 40–60%. The presence of an orifice in the weir increases TI values within the pool, especially along the middle portion of the cross section of the fishway. With an orifice in the weir, the average range of TI in Models A and B was 28–59% and 22–73%, respectively.

figure 23
Fig. 23

The effect of bed slope on TI variation is shown in Fig. 24. TI increases in different pool areas as the bed slope increases for a given discharge. For a low bed slope (S0 = 5%), a large pool area has increased from 38 to 63% and from 56 to 71% for low and high discharge, respectively. For a bed slope of S0 = 10%, the average values of TI are 45–67% and 61–73% for low and high discharge, respectively. Therefore, as runoff increases, the area with high TI values within the pool increases. A lower TI is observed for both bottom slopes in the corner of the wall, downstream of the crest walls, and between the side walls in the weir and channel. Figure 25 compares weir spacing with the distribution of TI values within the pool. The TI values are low at low flows and short distances between weirs. A maximum value of TI occurs at long spacing and where the plunging stream impinges on the bed and the area around the bed. TI ranges from 36 to 57%, 58–72%, and 47–76% for the highest flow in a wide pool area for L/B = 0.61, 1.22, and 1.83, respectively.

figure 24
Fig. 24
figure 25
Fig. 25

The average value of turbulence intensity (TIave) is plotted against q in Fig. 26. The increase in TI values with the increase in q values is seen in all models. For example, the average values of TI for Models A and B at L/B = 0.61 and slope of 10% increased from 23.9 to 33.5% and from 42 to 51.8%, respectively, with the increase in q from 0.1 to 0.27 m2/s. For a given discharge, a given gradient, and a given spacing of weirs, the TIave is higher in Model B than Model A. The presence of an orifice in the weirs increases the TI values in both types. For example, in Models A and B with L/B = 0.61 and q = 0.1 m2/s, the presence of an orifice increases TIave from 23.9 to 37.1% and from 42 to 48.8%, respectively. For each model, TIave in the pool increases with increasing bed slope. For Model B with q = 0.18 m2/s, TIave increases from 37.5 to 45.8% when you increase the invert slope from 5 to 10%. Increasing the distance between weirs increases the TIave in the pool. In Model B with S0 = 10% and q = 0.3 m2/s, the TIave in the pool increases from 51.8 to 63.7% as the distance between weirs increases from L/B = 0.61 to L/B = 0.183.

figure 26
Fig. 26

3.5 Energy Dissipation

To facilitate the passage of various target species through the pool of fishways, it is necessary to pay attention to the energy dissipation of the flow and to keep the flow velocity in the pool slow. The average volumetric energy dissipation (k) in the pool is calculated using the following basic formula:

�=����0��

(16)

where ρ is the water density, and H is the average water depth of the pool. The change in k versus Q for all models at two bottom slopes, S0 = 5%, and S0 = 10%, is shown in Fig. 27. Like the results of Yagci [8] and Kupferschmidt and Zhu [26], at a constant bottom slope, the energy dissipation in the pool increases with increasing discharge. The trend of change in k as a function of Q from the present study at a bottom gradient of S0 = 5% is also consistent with the results of Kupferschmidt and Zhu [26] for the fishway with rock weir. The only difference between the results is the geometry of the fishway and the combination of boulders instead of a solid wall. Comparison of the models shows that the conventional model has lower energy dissipation than the rectangular labyrinth for a given discharge. Also, increasing the distance between weirs decreases the volumetric energy dissipation for each model with the same bed slope. Increasing the slope of the bottom leads to an increase in volumetric energy dissipation, and an opening in the weir leads to a decrease in volumetric energy dissipation for both models. Therefore, as a guideline for volumetric energy dissipation, if the value within the pool is too high, the increased distance of the weir, the decreased slope of the bed, or the creation of an opening in the weir would decrease the volumetric dissipation rate.

figure 27
Fig. 27

To evaluate the energy dissipation inside the pool, the general method of energy difference in two sections can use:

ε=�1−�2�1

(17)

where ε is the energy dissipation rate, and E1 and E2 are the specific energies in Sects. 1 and 2, respectively. The distance between Sects. 1 and 2 is the same. (L is the distance between two upstream and downstream weirs.) Figure 28 shows the changes in ε relative to q (flow per unit width). The rectangular labyrinth weir (Model B) has a higher energy dissipation rate than the conventional weir (Model A) at a constant bottom gradient. For example, at S0 = 5%, L/B = 0.61, and q = 0.08 m3/s.m, the energy dissipation rate in Model A (conventional weir) was 0.261. In Model B (rectangular labyrinth weir), however, it was 0.338 (22.75% increase). For each model, the energy dissipation rate within the pool increases as the slope of the bottom increases. For Model B with L/B = 1.83 and q = 0.178 m3/s.m, the energy dissipation rate at S0 = 5% and 10% is 0.305 and 0.358, respectively (14.8% increase). Figure 29 shows an orifice’s effect on the pools’ energy dissipation rate. With an orifice in the weir, both models’ energy dissipation rates decreased. Thus, the reduction in energy dissipation rate varied from 7.32 to 9.48% for Model A and from 8.46 to 10.57 for Model B.

figure 28
Fig. 28
figure 29
Fig. 29

4 Discussion

This study consisted of entirely of numerical analysis. Although this study was limited to two weirs, the hydraulic performance and flow characteristics in a pooled fishway are highlighted by the rectangular labyrinth weir and its comparison with the conventional straight weir. The study compared the numerical simulations with laboratory experiments in terms of surface profiles, velocity vectors, and flow characteristics in a fish ladder pool. The results indicate agreement between the numerical and laboratory data, supporting the reliability of the numerical model in capturing the observed phenomena.

When the configuration of the weir changes to a rectangular labyrinth weir, the flow characteristics, the maximum and minimum area, and even the location of each hydraulic parameter change compared to a conventional weir. In the rectangular labyrinth weir, the flow is gradually directed to the sides as it passes the weir. This increases the velocity at the sides of the channel [21]. Therefore, the high-velocity area is located on the sides. In the downstream apex of the weir, the flow velocity is low, and this area may be suitable for swimming target fish. However, no significant change in velocity was observed at the conventional weir within the fish ladder. This resulted in an average increase in TKE of 32% and an average increase in TI of about 17% compared to conventional weirs.

In addition, there is a slight difference in the flow regime for both weir configurations. In addition, the rectangular labyrinth weir has a higher energy dissipation rate for a given discharge and constant bottom slope than the conventional weir. By reducing the distance between the weirs, this becomes even more intense. Finally, the presence of an orifice in both configurations of the weir increased the flow velocity at the orifice and in the middle of the pool, reducing the highest TKE value and increasing the values of TI within the pool of the fish ladder. This resulted in a reduction in volumetric energy dissipation for both weir configurations.

The results of this study will help the reader understand the direct effects of the governing geometric parameters on the hydraulic characteristics of a fishway with a pool and weir. However, due to the limited configurations of the study, further investigation is needed to evaluate the position of the weir’s crest on the flow direction and the difference in flow characteristics when combining boulders instead of a solid wall for this type of labyrinth weir [26]. In addition, hydraulic engineers and biologists must work together to design an effective fishway with rectangular labyrinth configurations. The migration habits of the target species should be considered when designing the most appropriate design [27]. Parametric studies and field observations are recommended to determine the perfect design criteria.

The current study focused on comparing a rectangular labyrinth weir with a conventional straight weir. Further research can explore other weir configurations, such as variations in crest position, different shapes of labyrinth weirs, or the use of boulders instead of solid walls. This would help understand the influence of different geometric parameters on hydraulic characteristics.

5 Conclusions

A new layout of the weir was evaluated, namely a rectangular labyrinth weir compared to a straight weir in a pool and weir system. The differences between the weirs were highlighted, particularly how variations in the geometry of the structures, such as the shape of the weir, the spacing of the weir, the presence of an opening at the weir, and the slope of the bottom, affect the hydraulics within the structures. The main findings of this study are as follows:

  • The calculated dimensionless discharge (Qt*) confirmed three different flow regimes: when the corresponding range of Qt* is smaller than 0.6, the regime of plunging flow occurs for values of L/B = 1.83. (L: distance of the weir; B: channel width). When the corresponding range of Qt* is greater than 0.5, transitional flow occurs at L/B = 1.22. On the other hand, if Qt* is greater than 1, the streaming flow is at values of L/B = 0.61.
  • For the conventional weir and the rectangular labyrinth weir with the plunging flow, it can be assumed that the discharge (Q) is proportional to 1.56 and 1.47h, respectively (h: water depth above the weir). This information is useful for estimating the discharge based on water depth in practical applications.
  • In the rectangular labyrinth weir, the high-velocity zone is located on the side walls between the top of the weir and the channel wall. A high-velocity variation within short distances of the weir. Low velocity occurs within the downstream apex of the weir. This area may be suitable for swimming target fish.
  • As the distance between weirs increased, the zone of maximum velocity increased. However, the zone of low speed decreased. The prevailing maximum velocity for a rectangular labyrinth weir at L/B = 0.61, 1.22, and 1.83 was 1.46, 1.65, and 1.84 m/s, respectively. The low mean velocities for these distances were 0.27, 0.44, and 0.72 m/s, respectively. This finding highlights the importance of weir spacing in determining the flow characteristics within the fishway.
  • The presence of an orifice in the weir increased the flow velocity at the orifice and in the middle of the pool, especially in a conventional weir. The increase ranged from 7.7 to 12.48%.
  • For a given bottom slope, in a conventional weir, the highest values of turbulent kinetic energy (TKE) are uniformly distributed in the upstream part of the weir in the cross section of the channel. In contrast, for the rectangular labyrinth weir, the highest TKE values were concentrated on the sides of the pool between the crest of the weir and the channel wall. The highest TKE value for the conventional and the rectangular labyrinth weir was 0.224 and 0.278 J/kg, respectively, at the highest bottom slope (S0 = 10%).
  • For a given discharge, bottom slope, and weir spacing, the average values of TI are higher for the rectangular labyrinth weir than for the conventional weir. At the highest discharge, the average range of turbulence intensity (TI) for the conventional and rectangular labyrinth weirs was between 24 and 45% and 15% and 62%, respectively. This reveals that the rectangular labyrinth weir may generate more turbulent flow conditions within the fishway.
  • For a given discharge and constant bottom slope, the rectangular labyrinth weir has a higher energy dissipation rate than the conventional weir (22.75 and 34.86%).
  • Increasing the distance between weirs decreased volumetric energy dissipation. However, increasing the gradient increased volumetric energy dissipation. The presence of an opening in the weir resulted in a decrease in volumetric energy dissipation for both model types.

Availability of data and materials

Data is contained within the article.

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Study on the critical sediment concentration determining the optimal transport capability of submarine sediment flows with different particle size composition

Study on the critical sediment concentration determining the optimal transport capability of submarine sediment flows with different particle size composition

Yupeng Ren abc, Huiguang Zhou cd, Houjie Wang ab, Xiao Wu ab, Guohui Xu cd, Qingsheng Meng cd

Abstract

해저 퇴적물 흐름은 퇴적물을 심해로 운반하는 주요 수단 중 하나이며, 종종 장거리를 이동하고 수십 또는 수백 킬로미터에 걸쳐 상당한 양의 퇴적물을 운반합니다. 그것의 강력한 파괴력은 종종 이동 과정에서 잠수함 유틸리티에 심각한 손상을 초래합니다.

퇴적물 흐름의 퇴적물 농도는 주변 해수와의 밀도차를 결정하며, 이 밀도 차이는 퇴적물 흐름의 흐름 능력을 결정하여 이송된 퇴적물의 최종 퇴적 위치에 영향을 미칩니다. 본 논문에서는 다양한 미사 및 점토 중량비(미사/점토 비율이라고 함)를 갖는 다양한 퇴적물 농도의 퇴적물 흐름을 수로 테스트를 통해 연구합니다.

우리의 테스트 결과는 특정 퇴적물 구성에 대해 퇴적물 흐름이 가장 빠르게 이동하는 임계 퇴적물 농도가 있음을 나타냅니다. 4가지 미사/점토 비율 각각에 대한 임계 퇴적물 농도와 이에 상응하는 최대 속도가 구해집니다. 결과는 점토 함량이 임계 퇴적물 농도와 선형적으로 음의 상관 관계가 있음을 나타냅니다.

퇴적물 농도가 증가함에 따라 퇴적물의 흐름 거동은 흐름 상태에서 붕괴된 상태로 변환되고 흐름 거동이 변화하는 두 탁한 현탁액의 유체 특성은 모두 Bingham 유체입니다.

또한 본 논문에서는 퇴적물 흐름 내 입자 배열을 분석하여 위에서 언급한 결과에 대한 미시적 설명도 제공합니다.

Submarine sediment flows is one of the main means for transporting sediment to the deep sea, often traveling long-distance and transporting significant volumes of sediment for tens or even hundreds of kilometers. Its strong destructive force often causes serious damage to submarine utilities on its course of movement. The sediment concentration of the sediment flow determines its density difference with the ambient seawater, and this density difference determines the flow ability of the sediment flow, and thus affects the final deposition locations of the transported sediment. In this paper, sediment flows of different sediment concentration with various silt and clay weight ratios (referred to as silt/clay ratio) are studied using flume tests. Our test results indicate that there is a critical sediment concentration at which sediment flows travel the fastest for a specific sediment composition. The critical sediment concentrations and their corresponding maximum velocities for each of the four silt/clay ratios are obtained. The results further indicate that the clay content is linearly negatively correlated with the critical sediment concentration. As the sediment concentration increases, the flow behaviors of sediment flows transform from the flow state to the collapsed state, and the fluid properties of the two turbid suspensions with changing flow behaviors are both Bingham fluids. Additionally, this paper also provides a microscopic explanation of the above-mentioned results by analyzing the arrangement of particles within the sediment flow.

Introduction

Submarine sediment flows are important carriers for sea floor sediment movement and may carry and transport significant volumes of sediment for tens or even hundreds of kilometers (Prior et al., 1987; Pirmez and Imran, 2003; Zhang et al., 2018). Earthquakes, storms, and floods may all trigger submarine sediment flow events (Hsu et al., 2008; Piper and Normark, 2009; Pope et al., 2017b; Gavey et al., 2017). Sediment flows have strong forces during the movement, which will cause great harm to submarine structures such as cables and pipelines (Pope et al., 2017a). It was first confirmed that the cable breaking event caused by the sediment flow occurred in 1929. The sediment flow triggered by the Grand Banks earthquake damaged 12 cables. According to the time sequence of the cable breaking, the maximum velocity of the sediment flow is as high as 28 m/s (Heezen and Ewing, 1952; Kuenen, 1952; Heezen et al., 1954). Subsequent research shows that the lowest turbidity velocity that can break the cable also needs to reach 19 m/s (Piper et al., 1988). Since then, there have been many damage events of submarine cables and oil and gas pipelines caused by sediment flows in the world (Hsu et al., 2008; Carter et al., 2012; Cattaneo et al., 2012; Carter et al., 2014). During its movement, the sediment flow will gradually deposit a large amount of sediment carried by it along the way, that is, the deposition process of the sediment flow. On the one hand, this process brings a large amount of terrestrial nutrients and other materials to the ocean, while on the other hand, it causes damage and burial to benthic organisms, thus forming the largest sedimentary accumulation on Earth – submarine fans, which are highly likely to become good reservoirs for oil and gas resources (Daly, 1936; Yuan et al., 2010; Wu et al., 2022). The study on sediment flows (such as, the study of flow velocity and the forces acting on seabed structures) can provide important references for the safe design of seabed structures, the protection of submarine ecosystems, and exploration of turbidity sediments related oil and gas deposits. Therefore, it is of great significance to study the movement of sediment flows.

The sediment flow, as a highly sediment-concentrated fluid flowing on the sea floor, has a dense bottom layer and a dilute turbulent cloud. Observations at the Monterey Canyon indicated that the sediment flow can maintain its movement over long distances if its bottom has a relatively high sediment concentration. This dense bottom layer can be very destructive along its movement path to any facilities on the sea floor (Paull et al., 2018; Heerema et al., 2020; Wang et al., 2020). The sediment flow mentioned in this research paper is the general term of sediment density flow.

The sediment flow, which occurs on the seafloor, has the potential to cause erosion along its path. In this process, the suspended sediment is replenished, allowing the sediment flow to maintain its continuous flow capacity (Zhao et al., 2018). The dynamic force of sediment flow movement stem from its own gravity and density difference with surrounding water. In cases that the gravity drive of the slope is absent (on a flat sea floor), the flow velocity and distance of sediment flows are essentially determined by the sediment composition and concentration of the sediment flows as previous studies have demonstrated. Ilstad et al. (2004) conducted underwater flow tests in a sloped tank and employed high speed video camera to perform particle tracking. The results indicated that the premixed sand-rich and clay-rich slurries demonstrated different flow velocity and flow behavior. Using mixed kaolinite(d50 = 6 μm) and silica flour(d50 = 9 μm) in three compositions with total volumetric concentration ranged 22% or 28%, Felix and Peakall (2006) carried out underwater flow tests in a 5° slope Perspex channel and found that the flow ability of sediment flows is different depending on sediment compositions and concentrations. Sumner et al. (2009) used annular flume experiments to investigate the depositional dynamics and deposits of waning sediment-laden flows, finding that decelerating fast flows with fixed sand content and variable mud content resulted in four different deposit types. Chowdhury and Testik (2011) used lock-exchange tank, and experimented the kaolin clay sediment flows in the concentration range of 25–350 g/L, and predicted the fluid mud sediment flows propagation characteristics, but this study focused on giving sediment flows propagate phase transition time parameters, and is limited to clay. Lv et al. (2017) found through experiments that the rheological properties and flow behavior of kaolin clay (d50 = 3.7 μm) sediment flows were correlated to clay concentrations. In the field monitoring conducted by Liu et al. (2023) at the Manila Trench in the South China Sea in 2021, significant differences in the velocity, movement distance, and flow morphology of turbidity currents were observed. These differences may be attributed to variations in the particle composition of the turbidity currents.

On low and gentle slopes, although sediment flow with sand as the main sediment composition moves faster, it is difficult to propagate over long distances because sand has greater settling velocity and subaqueous angle of repose. Whereas the sediment flows with silt and clay as main composition may maintain relatively stable currents. Although its movement speed is slow, it has the ability to propagate over long distances because of the low settling rate of the fine particles (Ilstad et al., 2004; Liu et al., 2023). In a field observation at the Gaoping submarine canyon, the sediments collected from the sediment flows exhibited grain size gradation and the sediment was mostly composed of silt and clay (Liu et al., 2012). At the largest deltas in the world, for instance, the Mississippi River Delta, the sediments are mainly composed of silt and clay, which generally distributed along the coast in a wide range and provided the sediment sources for further distribution. The sediment flows originated and transported sediment from the coast to the deep sea are therefore share the same sediment compositions as delta sediments. To study the sediment flows composed of silt and clay is of great importance.

The sediment concentration of the sediment flows determines the density difference between the sediment flows and the ambient water and plays a key role in its flow ability. For the sediment flow with sediment composed of silt and clay, low sediment concentration means low density and therefore leads to low flow ability; however, although high sediment concentration results in high density, since there is cohesion between fine particles, it changes fluid properties and leads to low flow ability as well. Therefore, there should be a critical sediment concentration with mixed composition of silt and clay, at which the sediment flow maintains its strongest flow capacity and have the highest movement speed. In other words, the two characteristics of particle diameter and concentration of the sediment flow determine its own motion ability, which, if occurs, may become the most destructive force to submarine structures.

The objectives of this work was to study how the sediment composition (measured in relative weight of silt and clay, and referred as silt/clay ratio) and sediment concentration affect flow ability and behavior of the sediment flows, and to quantify the critical sediment concentration at which the sediment flows reached the greatest flow velocity under the experiment setting. We used straight flume without slope and conducted a series of flume tests with varying sediment compositions (silt-rich or clay-rich) and concentrations (96 to 1212 g/L). Each sediment flow sample was tested and analyzed for rheological properties using a rheometer, in order to characterize the relationship between flow behavior and rheological properties. Combined with the particle diameter, density and viscosity characteristics of the sediment flows measured in the experiment, a numerical modeling study is conducted, which are mutually validated with the experimental results.

The sediment concentration determines the arrangements of the sediment particles in the turbid suspension, and the arrangement impacts the fluid properties of the turbid suspension. The microscopic mode of particle arrangement in the turbid suspension can be constructed to further analyze the relationship between the fluid properties of turbid suspension and the flow behaviors of the sediment flow, and then characterize the critical sediment concentration at which the sediment flow runs the fastest. A simplified microscopic model of particle arrangement in turbid suspension was constructed to analyze the microscopic arrangement characteristics of sediment particles in turbid suspension with the fastest velocity.

Section snippets

Equipment and materials

The sediment flows flow experiments were performed in a Perspex channel with smooth transparent walls. The layout and dimensions of the experimental set-up were shown in Fig. 1. The bottom of the channel was flat and straight, and a gate was arranged to separate the two tanks. In order to study the flow capacity of turbidity currents from the perspective of their own composition (particle size distribution and concentration), we used a straight channel instead of an inclined one, to avoid any

Relationship between sediment flow flow velocity and sediment concentration

After the sediment flow is generated, its movement in the first half (50 cm) of the channel is relatively stable, and there is obvious shock diffusion in the second half. The reason is that the excitation wave (similar to the surge) will be formed during the sediment flow movement, and its speed is much faster than the speed of the sediment flow head. When the excitation wave reaches the tail of the channel, it will be reflected, thus affecting the subsequent flow of the sediment flow.

Sediment flows motion simulation based on FLOW-3D

As a relatively mature 3D fluid simulation software, FLOW-3D can accurately predict the free surface flow, and has been used to simulate the movement process of sediment flows for many times (Heimsund, 2007). The model adopted in this paper is RNG turbulence model, which can better deal with the flow with high strain rate and is suitable for the simulation of sediment flows with variable shape during movement. The governing equations of the numerical model involved include continuity equation,

Conclusions

In this study, we conducted a series of sediment flow flume tests with mixed silt and clay sediment samples in four silt/clay ratios on a flat slope. Rheological measurements were carried out on turbid suspension samples and microstructure analysis of the sediment particle arrangements was conducted, we concluded that:

  • (1)The flow velocity of the sediment flow is controlled by the sediment concentration and its own particle diameter composition, the flow velocity increased with the increase of the

Declaration of Competing Interest

The authors declare that they have no known competing financial interests or personal relationships that could have appeared to influence the work reported in this paper.

Acknowledgements

This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China [Grant no. 42206055]; the National Natural Science Foundation of China [Grant no. 41976049]; and the National Natural Science Foundation of China [Grant no. 42272327].

References (39)

There are more references available in the full text version of this article.

Figure 1. Three-dimensional finite element model of local scouring of semi-exposed submarine cable.

반노출 해저케이블의 국부 정련과정 및 영향인자에 대한 수치적 연구

Numerical Study of the Local Scouring Process and Influencing Factors of Semi-Exposed Submarine Cables

by Qishun Li,Yanpeng Hao *,Peng Zhang,Haotian Tan,Wanxing Tian,Linhao Chen andLin Yang

School of Electric Power Engineering, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou 510640, China

*Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.J. Mar. Sci. Eng.202311(7), 1349; https://doi.org/10.3390/jmse11071349

Received: 10 June 2023 / Revised: 19 June 2023 / Accepted: 27 June 2023 / Published: 1 July 2023(This article belongs to the Section Ocean Engineering)

일부 수식이 손상되어 표시될 수 있습니다. 이 경우 원문을 참조하시기 바랍니다.

Abstract

Local scouring might result in the spanning of submarine cables, endangering their mechanical and electrical properties. In this contribution, a three-dimensional computational fluid dynamics simulation model is developed using FLOW-3D, and the scouring process of semi-exposed submarine cables is investigated. The effects of the sediment critical Shields number, sediment density, and ocean current velocity on local scouring are discussed, and variation rules for the submarine cables’ spanning time are provided. The results indicate that three scouring holes are formed around the submarine cables. The location of the bottom of the holes corresponds to that of the maximum shear velocity. The continuous development of scouring holes at the wake position leads to the spanning of the submarine cables. The increase in the sediment’s critical Shields number and sediment density, as well as the decrease in the ocean current velocity, will extend the time for maintaining the stability of the upstream scouring hole and retard the development velocity of the wake position and downstream scouring holes. The spanning time has a cubic relationship with the sediment’s critical Shields number, a linear relationship with the sediment density, and an exponential relationship with the ocean current velocity. In this paper, the local scouring process of semi-exposed submarine cables is studied, which provides a theoretical basis for the operation and maintenance of submarine cables.

Keywords: 

submarine cablelocal scouringnumerical simulationcomputational fluid dynamics

1. Introduction

As a key piece of equipment in cross-sea power grids, submarine cables are widely used to connect autonomous power grids, supply power to islands or offshore platforms, and transmit electric power generated by marine renewable energy installations to onshore substations [1]. Once submarine cables break down due to natural disasters or human-made damage, the normal operation of other marine electric power equipment connected to them may be affected. These chain reactions will cause great economic losses and serious social impacts [2].

To protect submarine cables, they are usually buried 1 to 3 m below the seabed [3]. However, submarine cables are still confronted with potential threats from the complex subsea environment. Under the influence of fishing, anchor damage, ocean current scouring, and other factors, the sediment above submarine cables will always inevitably migrate. When a submarine cable is partially exposed, the scouring at this position will be exacerbated; eventually, it will cause the submarine cable to span. According to a field investigation of the 500 kV oil-filled submarine cable that is part of the Hainan networking system, the total length of the span is 49 m [4]. Under strong ocean currents, spanning submarine cables may experience vortex-induced vibrations. Fatigue stress caused by vortex-induced vibrations may lead to metal sheath rupture [5], which endangers the mechanical and electrical properties of submarine cables. Therefore, understanding the local scouring processes of partially exposed submarine cables is crucial for predicting scouring patterns. This is the basis for developing effective operation and maintenance strategies for submarine cables.

The mechanism and influencing factors of sediment erosion have been examined by researchers around the world. In 1988, Sumer [6] conducted experiments to show that the shedding vortex in the wake of a pipeline would increase the Shields parameter by 3–4 times, which would result in severe scouring. In 1991, Chiew [7] performed experiments to prove that the maximum scouring depth could be obtained when the pipeline was located on a flat bed and was scoured by a unidirectional water flow. Based on the test results, they provided a prediction formula for the maximum scouring depth. In 2003, Mastbergen [8] proposed a one-dimensional, steady-state numerical model of turbidity currents, which considered the negative pore pressures in the seabed. The calculated results of this model were basically consistent with the actual scouring of a submarine canyon. In 2007, Dey [9] presented a semitheoretical model for the computation of the maximum clear-water scour depth below underwater pipelines in uniform sediments under a steady flow, and the predicted scour depth in clear water satisfactorily agreed with the observed values. In 2008, Dey [10] conducted experiments on clear-water scour below underwater pipelines under a steady flow and obtained a variation pattern of the depth of the scouring hole. In 2008, Liang [11] used a two-dimensional numerical simulation to study the scouring process of a tube bundle under the action of currents and waves. They discovered that, compared with the scouring of a single tube, the scouring depth of the tube bundle was deeper, and the scouring time was longer. In 2012, Yang [12] found that placing rubber sheets under pipes can greatly accelerate their self-burial. The rubber sheets had the best performance when their length was about 1.5 times the size of the pipe. In 2020, Li [13] investigated the two-dimensional local scour beneath two submarine pipelines in tandem under wave-plus-current conditions via numerical simulation. They found that for conditions involving waves plus a low-strength current, the scour pattern beneath the two pipelines behaved like that in the pure-wave condition. Conversely, when the current had equal strength to the wave-induced flow, the scour pattern beneath the two pipelines resembled that in the pure-current condition. In 2020, Guan [14] studied and discussed the interactive coupling effects among a vibrating pipeline, flow field, and scour process through experiments, and the experimental data showed that the evolution of the scour hole had significant influences on the pipeline vibrations. In 2021, Liu [15] developed a two-dimensional finite element numerical model and researched the local scour around a vibrating pipeline. The numerical results showed that the maximum vibration amplitude of the pipeline could reach about 1.2 times diameter, and the maximum scour depth occurred on the wake side of the vibrating pipeline. In 2021, Huang [16] carried out two-dimensional numerical simulations to investigate the scour beneath a single pipeline and piggyback pipelines subjected to an oscillatory flow condition at a KC number of 11 and captured typical steady-streaming structures around the pipelines due to the oscillatory flow condition. In 2021, Cui [17] investigated the characteristics of the riverbed scour profile for a pipeline buried at different depths under the condition of riverbed sediments with different particle sizes. The results indicated that, in general, the equilibrium scour depth changed in a spoon shape with the gradual increase in the embedment ratio. In 2022, Li [18] used numerical simulation to study the influence of the burial depth of partially buried pipelines on the surrounding flow field, but they did not investigate the scour depth. In 2022, Zhu [19] performed experiments to prove that the scour hole propagation rate under a pipeline decreases with an increasing pipeline embedment ratio and rises with the KC number. In 2022, Najafzadeh [20] proposed equations for the prediction of the scouring propagation rate around pipelines due to currents based on a machine learning model, and the prediction results were consistent with the experimental data. In 2023, Ma [21] used the computational fluid dynamics coarse-grained discrete element method to simulate the scour process around a pipeline. The results showed that this method can effectively reduce the considerable need for computing resources and excessive computation time. In 2023, through numerical simulations, Hu [22] discovered that the water velocity and the pipeline diameter had a significant effect on the depth of scouring.

In the preceding works, the researchers investigated the mechanism of sediment scouring and the effect of various factors on the local scouring of submarine pipelines. However, submarine cables are buried beneath the seabed, while submarine pipelines are erected above the seabed. The difference in laying methods leads to a large discrepancy between their local scouring processes. Therefore, the conclusions of the above investigations are not applicable to the local scouring of submarine cables. Currently, there is no report on the research of the local scouring of partially exposed submarine cables.

In this paper, a three-dimensional computational fluid dynamics (CFD) finite element model, based on two-phase flow, is established using FLOW-3D. The local scouring process of semi-exposed submarine cables under steady-state ocean currents is studied, and the variation rules of the depth and the shape of the scouring holes, as well as the shear velocity with time, are obtained. By setting different critical Shields numbers of the sediment, different sediment densities, and different ocean current velocities, the change rule of the scouring holes’ development rate and the time required for the spanning of submarine cables are explored.

2. Sediment Scouring Model

In the sediment scouring model, the sediment is set as the dispersed particle, which is regarded as a kind of quasifluid. In this context, sediment scouring is considered as a two-phase flow process between the liquid phase and solid particle phase. The sediment in this process is further divided into two categories: one is suspended in the fluid, and the other is deposited on the bottom.When the local Shields number of sediment is greater than the critical Shields number, the deposited sediment will be transformed into the suspended sediment under the action of ocean currents. The calculation formulae of the local Shields numbers θ and the critical Shields numbers 

θcr of sediment is given as [23,24

]

𝜃=𝑈2𝑓(𝜌𝑠/𝜌𝑓−1)𝑔𝑑50,�=��2(��/��−1)��50,(1)

𝜃𝑐𝑟=0.31+1.2𝐷∗+0.055(1−𝑒−0.02𝐷∗),���=0.31+1.2�*+0.055(1−�−0.02�*),(2)

𝐷∗=𝑑50𝜌𝑓(𝜌𝑠−𝜌𝑓)𝑔/𝜇2−−−−−−−−−−−−−−√3,�*=�50��(��−��)�/�23,(3)where 

Uf is the shearing velocity of bed surface, 

ρs is the density of the sediment particle, 

ρf is the fluid density, g is the acceleration of gravity, d

50 is the median size of sediment, and μ is the dynamic viscosity of sediment.And each sediment particle suspended in the fluid obeys the equations for mass conservation and energy conservation

∂𝑐𝑠∂𝑡+∇⋅(𝑢𝑐𝑠)=0,∂��∂�+∇⋅(�¯��)=0,(4)

∂𝑢𝑠∂𝑡+𝑢⋅∇𝑢𝑠=−1𝜌𝑠∇𝑃+𝐹−𝐾𝑓𝑠𝜌𝑠𝑢𝑟,∂��∂�+�¯⋅∇��=−1��∇�+�−�������,(5)where 

cs is the concentration of the sediment particle, 

𝑢�¯ is the mean velocity vector of the fluid and the sediment particle, 

us is the velocity of the sediment particle, 

fs is the volume fraction of the sediment particle, P is the pressure, F is the volumetric and viscous force, K is the drag force, and 

ur is the relative velocity.

3. Numerical Setup and Modeling

In this paper, a three-dimensional submarine cable local scouring simulation model is established by FLOW-3D. Based on the numerical simulation, the process of the submarine cable, which gradually changes from semi-exposed to the spanning state under the steady-state ocean current, is studied. The geometric modeling, the mesh division, the physical field setup, and the grid independent test of CFD numerical model are as follows.

3.1. Geometric Modeling and Mesh Division

A three-dimensional (3D) numerical model of the local scouring of a semi-exposed submarine cable is established, which is shown in Figure 1. The dimensions of the model are marked in Figure 1. The inlet direction of the ocean current is defined as the upstream of the submarine cable (referred to as upstream), and the outlet direction of the ocean current is defined as the downstream of the submarine cable (referred to as downstream).

Jmse 11 01349 g001 550

Figure 1. Three-dimensional finite element model of local scouring of semi-exposed submarine cable.

The submarine cable with a diameter of 0.2 m is positioned on sediment that is initially in a semi-exposed state. When the length of the span is short, the submarine cable will not show obvious deformation due to gravity or scouring from the ocean current. Therefore, the submarine cable surface is set as the fixed boundary. The model’s left boundary is set as the inlet, the right boundary is set as the outlet, the front and rear boundaries are set as symmetry, and the bottom boundary is set as the non-slip wall. Since the water depth above the submarine cable is more than 0.6 m in practice, the top boundary of the model is also set as symmetry. The sediment near the inlet and the outlet will be carried by ocean currents, which leads to the abnormal scouring terrain. At each end of the sediment, a baffle (thickness of 3 cm) is installed to ensure that the simulation results can reflect the real situation.

Due to the fact that the flow field around the semi-exposed submarine cable is not a simple two-dimensional symmetrical distribution, it should be solved by three-dimensional numerical simulation. Considering the accuracy and efficiency of the calculation, the size of mesh is set to 0.02 m. The total number of meshes after the dissection is 133,254.

3.2. Physical Field Setup

The CFD finite element model contains four physical field modules: sediment scouring module, gravity and non-inertial reference frame module, density evaluation module, and viscosity and turbulence module. In this paper, the renormalization group (RNG) kε turbulence model is used, which has high computational accuracy for turbulent vortices. Therefore, this turbulence model is suitable for calculating the sediment scouring process around the semi-exposed submarine cable [25]. The key parameters of the numerical simulation are referring to the survey results of submarine sediments in the Korean Peninsula [26], as listed in Table 1.Table 1. Key parameters of numerical simulation.

Table

3.3. Mesh Independent Test

In order to eliminate errors caused by the quantity of grids in the calculation process, two sizes of mesh are set on the validation model, and the scour profiles under different mesh sizes are compared. The validation model is shown in Figure 2, and the scouring terrain under different mesh size is given in Figure 3.

Jmse 11 01349 g002 550

Figure 2. Validation model.

Jmse 11 01349 g003 550

Figure 3. Scouring terrain under different mesh sizes.

It can be seen from Figure 3 that with the increase in the number of meshes, the scouring terrain of the verification model changes slightly, and the scouring depth is basically unchanged. Considering the accuracy of the numerical simulation and the calculation’s time cost, it is reasonable to consider setting the mesh size to 0.02 m.

4. Results and Analysis

4.1. Analysis of Local Scouring Process

Based on the CFD finite element numerical simulation, the local scouring process of the submarine cable under the steady-state ocean current is analyzed. The end time of the simulation is 9 h, the initial time step is 0.01 s, and the fluid velocity is 0.40 m/s. Simulation results are saved every minute. Figure 4 illustrates the scouring terrain around the semi-exposed submarine cable, which has been scoured by the steady-state current for 5 h.

Jmse 11 01349 g004 550

Figure 4. Scouring terrain around semi-exposed submarine cable (scour for 5 h).

As can be seen from Figure 4, three scouring holes were separately formed in the upstream wake position and downstream of the semi-exposed submarine cable. The scouring holes are labeled according to their locations. The variation of the scouring terrain around the semi-exposed submarine cable over time is given in Figure 5. The red circle in the picture corresponds to the position of the submarine cable, and the red box in the legend marks the time when the submarine cable is spanning.

Jmse 11 01349 g005 550

Figure 5. Variation of scouring terrain around semi-exposed submarine cable adapted to time.

From Figure 5, in the first hour of scouring, the upstream (−0.5 m to −0.1 m) and downstream (0.43 m to 1.5 m) scouring holes appeared. The upstream scouring hole was relatively flat with depth of 0.04 m. The depth of the downstream scouring hole increased with the increase in distance, and the maximum depth was 0.13 m. The scouring hole that developed at the wake position was very shallow, and its depth was only 0.007 m.

In the second hour of scouring, the upstream scouring hole’s depth remained nearly constant. The depth of the downstream scouring hole only increased by 0.002 m. The scouring hole at the wake position developed steadily, and its depth increased from 0.007 m to 0.014 m.

The upstream and downstream scouring holes did not continue to develop during the third to the sixth hour. Compared to the first two hours, the development of scouring holes at the wake position accelerated significantly, with an average growth rate of 0.028 m/h. The growth rate in the fifth hour of the scouring hole at the wake position was slightly faster than the other times. After 6 h of scouring, the sediment on the right side of the submarine cable had been hollowed out.

In the seventh and the eighth hour of scouring, the upstream scouring hole’s depth increased slightly, the downstream scouring hole still remained stable, and the depth of the scouring hole at wake position increased by 0.019 m. The sediment under the submarine cable was gradually eroded as well. By the end of the eighth hour, the lower right part of the submarine cable had been exposed to water as well.

At 8 h 21 min of the scouring, the submarine cable was completely spanned, and the scouring holes were connected to each other. Within the next 10 min, the development of the scouring holes sped up significantly, and the maximum depth of scouring holes increased greatly to 0.27 m.

In reference [17], researchers have studied the local scouring process of semi-buried pipelines in sandy riverbeds through experiments. The test results show that the scouring process can be divided into a start-up stage, micropore formation stage, extension stage, and equilibrium stage. In this paper, the first three stages are simulated, and the results are in good agreement with the experiment, which proves the accuracy of the present numerical model.

In this research, the velocity of ocean currents at the sediment surface is defined as the shear velocity, which plays an important role in the process of local scouring. Figure 6 provides visual data on how the shear velocity varies over time.

Jmse 11 01349 g006 550

Figure 6. Shear velocity changes in the scouring process.

The semi-exposed submarine cable protrudes from the seabed, which makes the shear velocity of its surface much higher than other locations. After the submarine cable is spanned, the shear velocity of the scouring hole surface below it is taken. This is the reason for the sudden change of shear velocity at the submarine cable’s location in Figure 6.The shear velocity in the initial state of the upstream scouring hole is obviously greater than in subsequent times. After 1 h of scouring, the shear velocity in the upstream scouring hole rapidly decreased from 1.1 × 10

−2 m/s to 3.98 × 10

−3 m/s and remained stable until the end of the sixth hour. This phenomenon explains why the upstream scouring hole developed rapidly in the first hour but remained stable for the following 5 h.The shear velocity in the downstream scouring hole reduced at first and then increased; its initial value was 1.41 × 10

−2 m/s. It took approximately 5 h for the shear velocity to stabilize, and the stable shear velocity was 2.26 × 10

−3 m/s. Therefore, compared with the upstream scouring hole, the downstream scouring hole was deeper and required more time to reach stability.The initial shear velocity in the scouring hole at the wake position was only 7.1 × 10

−3 m/s, which almost does not change in the first hour. This leads to a very slow development of the scouring hole at the wake position in the early stages. The maximum shear velocity in this scouring hole gradually increased to 1.05 × 10

−2 m/s from the second to the fifth hour, and then decreased to 6.61 × 10

−3 m/s by the end of the eighth hour. This is why the scouring hole at the wake position grows fastest around the fifth hour. Consistent with the pattern of change in the scouring hole’s terrain, the location of the maximal shear velocity also shifted to the right with time.

The shear velocity of all three scouring holes rose dramatically in the last hour. Combined with the terrain in Figure 5, this can be attributed to the complete spanning of the submarine cable.

From Equations (3)–(5), one can see the movement of the sediment is related directly with the sediment’s critical Shields number, sediment density, and ocean current velocity. Based on the parameters in Table 1, the influence of the above parameters on the local scouring process of semi-exposed submarine cables will be discussed.

4.2. Influence Factors

4.2.1. Sediment’s Critical Shields Number

The sediment’s critical Shields number 

θcr is set as 0.02, 0.03, 0.04, 0.05, 0.06, and 0.07, and the variations of scouring terrain over time under each 

θcr are displayed in Figure 7.

Jmse 11 01349 g007 550

Figure 7. Influence of sediment’s critical Shields number 

θcr on local scouring around semi-exposed submarine cable: (a

θcr = 0.02; (b

θcr = 0.03; (c

θcr = 0.04; (d

θcr = 0.05; (e

θcr = 0.06; and (f

θcr = 0.07.From Figure 7, one can see that a change in 

θcr will affect the depth of the upstream scouring hole and the development speed of the scouring hole at the wake position, but it will have no significant impact on the expansion of the downstream scouring hole.Under conditions of different 

θcr, the upstream scouring hole will reach a temporary plateau within 1 h, at which time the stable depth will be about 0.04 m. When 

θcr ≤ 0.05, the upstream scouring hole will continue to expand after a few hours. The stable time is obviously affected by 

θcr, which will gradually increase from 1 h to 11 h with the increase in 

θcr. The terrain of the upstream scouring hole will gradually convert to deep on the left and to shallow on the right. Since the scouring hole at the wake position has not been stable, its state at the time of submarine cable spanning is studied emphatically. In the whole process of scouring, the scouring hole at the wake position continues to develop and does not reach a stable state. With the increase in 

θcr, the development velocity of the scouring hole at the wake position will decrease considerably. Its average evolution velocity decreases from 3.88 cm/h to 1.62 cm/h, and its depth decreases from 21.9 cm to 18.8 cm. Under the condition of each 

θcr, the downstream scouring hole will stabilize within 1 h, and the stable depth will be basically unchanged (all about 13.5 cm).As 

θcr increases, so does the sediment’s ability to withstand shearing forces, which will cause it to become increasingly difficult to be eroded or carried away by ocean currents. This effect has been directly reflected in the depth of scouring holes (upstream and wake position). Due to the blocking effect of semi-exposed submarine cables, the wake is elongated, which is why the downstream scouring hole develops before the scouring hole at the wake position and quickly reaches a stable state. However, due to the high wake intensity, this process is not significantly affected by the change of 

θcr.

4.2.2. Sediment Density

The density of sediment 

ρs is set as 1550 kg/m

3, 1600 kg/m

3, 1650 kg/m

3, 1700 kg/m

3, 1750 kg/m

3, and 1800 kg/m

3, and the variation of scouring terrain over time under each 

ρs are displayed in Figure 8.

Jmse 11 01349 g008 550

Figure 8. Influence of sediment density 

ρs on local scouring around semi-exposed submarine cable: (a

ρs = 1550 kg/m

3; (bρs = 1600 kg/m

3; (cρs = 1650 kg/m

3; (dρs = 1700 kg/m

3; (eρs = 1750 kg/m

3; and (f

ρs = 1800 kg/m

3.From Figure 8, one can see that a change in 

ρs will also affect the depth of the upstream scouring hole and the development speed of the scouring hole at the wake position. In addition, it can even have an impact on the downstream scouring hole depth.Under different 

ρs conditions, the upstream scouring hole will always reach a temporary stable state in 1 h, at which time the stable depth will be 0.04 m. When 

ρs ≤ 1750 kg/m

3, the upstream scouring hole will continue to expand after a few hours. The stabilization time of upstream scouring hole is more clearly affected by 

ρs, which will gradually increase from 3 h to 13 h with the increase in 

ρs. The terrain of the upstream scouring hole will gradually change to deep on the left and to shallow on the right. Since the scouring hole at the wake position has not been stable, its state at the time of the submarine cable spanning is studied emphatically, too. In the whole process of scouring, the scouring hole at the wake position continues to develop and does not reach a stable state. When 

ρs is large, the development rate of scouring hole obviously decreased with time. With the increase in 

ρs, the development velocity of the scouring hole at the wake position reduces from 3.38 cm/h to 1.14 cm/h, and the depth of this scouring hole declines from 20 cm to 15 cm. As 

ρs increases, the stabilization time of the downstream scouring hole increases from less than 1 h to about 2 h, but the stabilization depth of the downstream scouring hole remains essentially the same (all around 13.5 cm).As can be seen from Equation (1), the increase in 

ρs will reduce the Shields number, thus weakening the shear action of the sediment by the ocean current, which explains the extension of the stability time of the upstream scouring hole. At the same time, with the increase in the depth of scouring hole at the wake position, its shear velocity will decreases. Therefore, under a larger 

ρs value, the development speed of scouring hole at the wake position will decrease significantly with time. Possibly for the same reason, 

ρs can affect the development rate of downstream scouring hole.

4.2.3. Ocean Current Velocity

The ocean current velocity v is set as 0.35 m/s, 0.40 m/s, 0.45 m/s, 0.50 m/s, 0.55 m/s, and 0.60 m/s. Figure 9 presents the variation in scouring terrain with time for each v.

Jmse 11 01349 g009 550

Figure 9. Influence of ocean current velocity v on local scouring around semi-exposed submarine cable: (av = 0.35 m/s; (bv = 0.40 m/s; (cv = 0.45 m/s; (dv = 0.50 m/s; (ev = 0.55 m/s; and (fv = 0.60 m/s.

Changes in v affect the depth of the upstream and downstream scouring holes, as well as the development velocity of the wake position and downstream scouring holes.

When v ≤ 0.45 m/s, the upstream scouring hole will reach a temporary stable state within 1 h, at which point the stable depth will be 0.04 m. The stabilization time of the upstream scouring hole is affected by v, which will gradually decrease from 15 h to 3 h with the increase in v. When v > 0.45 m/s, the upstream scouring hole is going to expand continuously. With the increase in v, its average development velocity increases from 6.68 cm/h to 8.66 cm/h, and its terrain changes to deep on the left and to shallow on the right. When the submarine cable is spanning, special attention should be paid to the depth of the scouring hole at the wake position. Throughout whole scouring process, the scouring hole at the wake position continues to develop and does not reach a stable state. With the increase in v, the depth of scouring hole at the wake position will increase from 14 cm to 20 cm, and the average development velocity will increase from 0.91 cm/h to 10.43 cm/h. As v increases, the time required to stabilize the downstream scouring hole is shortened from 1to 2 h to less than 1 h, but the stable depth is remains nearly constant at 13.5 cm.

An increase in v will increase the shear velocity. Therefore, when the depth of the scouring hole increases, the shear velocity in the hole will also increase, which can deepen both the upstream and downstream scouring hole. According to Equation (1), the Shields number is proportional to the square of the shear velocity. The increase in shear velocity significantly intensifies local scouring, which increases the development rate of scouring holes at the wake position and downstream.

4.3. Variation Rule of Spanning Time

In this paper, the spanning time is defined as the time taken for a semi-exposed submarine cable (initial state) to become a spanning submarine cable. Figure 10 illustrates the effect of the above parameters on the spanning time of the semi-exposed submarine cable.

Jmse 11 01349 g010 550

Figure 10. Influence of different parameters on spanning time of the semi-exposed submarine cable: (a) Sediment critical Shields number; (b) Sediment density; and (c) Ocean current velocity.From Figure 10a, the spanning time monotonically increases with the increase in the critical Shields number of sediment. However, the slope of the curve decreases first and then increases, and the inflection point is at 

θcr = 4.59 × 10

−2. The relationship between spanning time t and sediment’s critical Shields number 

θcr can be formulated by a cubic function as shown in Equation (6):

𝑡=−2.98+6.76𝜃𝑐𝑟−1.45𝜃2𝑐𝑟+0.11𝜃3𝑐𝑟.�=−2.98+6.76���−1.45���2+0.11���3.(6)It can be seen from Figure 10b that with the increase in the sediment density, the spanning time increases monotonically and linearly. The relationship between the spanning time t and the sediment’s density 

ρs can be formulated by the first order function as shown in Equation (7):

𝑡=−41.59+30.54𝜌𝑠.�=−41.59+30.54��.(7)Figure 10c shows that with the increase in the ocean current velocity, the spanning time decreases monotonically. The slope of the curve increases with the increase in the ocean current velocity, so it can be considered that there is saturation of the ocean current velocity effect. The relationship between the spanning time t and the ocean current velocity v can be formulated by the exponential function

𝑡=0.15𝑣−4.38.�=0.15�−4.38.(8)

5. Conclusions

In this paper, a three-dimensional CFD finite element numerical simulation model is established, which is used to research the local scouring process of the semi-exposed submarine cable under the steady-state ocean current. The relationship between shear velocity and scouring terrain is discussed, the influence of sediment critical Shields number, sediment density and ocean current velocity on the local scouring process is analyzed, and the variation rules of the spanning time of the semi-exposed submarine cable is given. The conclusions are as follows:

  • Under the steady-state ocean currents, scouring holes will be formed at the upstream, wake position and downstream of the semi-exposed submarine cable. The upstream and downstream scouring holes develop faster, which will reach a temporary stable state at about 1 h after the start of the scouring. The scouring hole at the wake position will continue to expand at a slower rate and eventually lead to the spanning of the submarine cable.
  • There is a close relationship between the distribution of shear velocity and the scouring terrain. As the local scouring process occurs, the location of the maximum shear velocity within the scouring hole shifts and causes the bottom of the hole to move as well.
  • When the sediment’s critical Shields number and density are significantly large and ocean current velocity is sufficiently low, the duration of the stable state of the upstream scouring hole will be prolonged, and the average development velocity of the scouring holes at the wake position and downstream will be reduced.
  • The relationship between the spanning time and the critical Shields number θcr can be formulated as a cubic function, in which the curve’s inflection point is θcr = 4.59 × 10−2. The relationship between spanning time and sediment density can be formulated as a linear function. The relationship between spanning time and ocean current velocity can be formulated by exponential function.

Based on the conclusions of this paper, even when it is too late to take measures or when the exposed position of the submarine cable cannot be located, the degree of burial depth development still can be predicted. This prediction is important for the operation and maintenance of the submarine cable. However, the study still leaves something to be desired. Only the local scouring process under the steady-state ocean current was studied, which is an extreme condition. In practice, exposed submarine cables are more likely to be scoured by reciprocating ocean currents. In the future, we will investigate the local scouring of submarine cables under the reciprocating ocean current.

Author Contributions

Conceptualization, Y.H. and Q.L.; methodology, Q.L., P.Z. and H.T.; software, Q.L.; validation, Q.L., L.C. and W.T.; writing—original draft preparation, Q.L.; writing—review and editing, Y.H. and Q.L.; supervision, Y.H. and L.Y. All authors have read and agreed to the published version of the manuscript.

Funding

This research was funded by the [Smart Grid Joint Fund Key Project between National Natural Science Foundation of China and State Grid Corporation] grant number [U1766220].

Institutional Review Board Statement

Not applicable.

Informed Consent Statement

Not applicable.

Data Availability Statement

The data supporting the reported results cannot be shared at this time, as they have been used in producing more publications on this research.

Acknowledgments

This work is supported by the Smart Grid Joint Fund Key Project of the National Natural Science Foundation of China and State Grid Corporation (Grant No. U1766220).

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

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Validity evaluation of popular liquid-vapor phase change models for cryogenic self-pressurization process

극저온 자체 가압 공정을 위한 인기 있는 액체-증기 상 변화 모델의 타당성 평가

액체-증기 상 변화 모델은 밀폐된 용기의 자체 가압 프로세스 시뮬레이션에 매우 큰 영향을 미칩니다. Hertz-Knudsen 관계, 에너지 점프 모델 및 그 파생물과 같은 널리 사용되는 액체-증기 상 변화 모델은 실온 유체를 기반으로 개발되었습니다. 액체-증기 전이를 통한 극저온 시뮬레이션에 널리 적용되었지만 각 모델의 성능은 극저온 조건에서 명시적으로 조사 및 비교되지 않았습니다. 본 연구에서는 171가지 일반적인 액체-증기 상 변화 모델을 통합한 통합 다상 솔버가 제안되었으며, 이를 통해 이러한 모델을 실험 데이터와 직접 비교할 수 있습니다. 증발 및 응축 모델의 예측 정확도와 계산 속도를 평가하기 위해 총 <>개의 자체 가압 시뮬레이션이 수행되었습니다. 압력 예측은 최적화 전략이 서로 다른 모델 계수에 크게 의존하는 것으로 나타났습니다. 에너지 점프 모델은 극저온 자체 가압 시뮬레이션에 적합하지 않은 것으로 나타났습니다. 평균 편차와 CPU 소비량에 따르면 Lee 모델과 Tanasawa 모델은 다른 모델보다 안정적이고 효율적인 것으로 입증되었습니다.

Elsevier

International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer

Volume 181, December 2021, 121879

International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer

Validity evaluation of popular liquid-vapor phase change models for cryogenic self-pressurization process

Author links open overlay panelZhongqi Zuo, Jingyi Wu, Yonghua HuangShow moreAdd to MendeleyShareCite

https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijheatmasstransfer.2021.121879Get rights and content

Abstract

Liquid-vapor phase change models vitally influence the simulation of self-pressurization processes in closed containers. Popular liquid-vapor phase change models, such as the Hertz-Knudsen relation, energy jump model, and their derivations were developed based on room-temperature fluids. Although they had widely been applied in cryogenic simulations with liquid-vapor transitions, the performance of each model was not explicitly investigated and compared yet under cryogenic conditions. A unified multi-phase solver incorporating four typical liquid-vapor phase change models has been proposed in the present study, which enables direct comparison among those models against experimental data. A total number of 171 self-pressurization simulations were conducted to evaluate the evaporation and condensation models’ prediction accuracy and calculation speed. It was found that the pressure prediction highly depended on the model coefficients, whose optimization strategies differed from each other. The energy jump model was found inadequate for cryogenic self-pressurization simulations. According to the average deviation and CPU consumption, the Lee model and the Tanasawa model were proven to be more stable and more efficient than the others.

Introduction

The liquid-vapor phase change of cryogenic fluids is widely involved in industrial applications, such as the hydrogen transport vehicles [1], shipborne liquid natural gas (LNG) containers [2] and on-orbit cryogenic propellant tanks [3]. These applications require cryogenic fluids to be stored for weeks to months. Although high-performance insulation measures are adopted, heat inevitably enters the tank via radiation and conduction. The self-pressurization in the tank induced by the heat leakage eventually causes the venting loss of the cryogenic fluids and threatens the safety of the craft in long-term missions. To reduce the boil-off loss and extend the cryogenic storage duration, a more comprehensive understanding of the self-pressurization mechanism is needed.

Due to the difficulties and limitations in implementing cryogenic experiments, numerical modeling is a convenient and powerful way to study the self-pressurization process of cryogenic fluids. However, how the phase change models influence the mass and heat transfer under cryogenic conditions is still unsettled [4]. As concluded by Persad and Ward [5], a seemingly slight variation in the liquid-vapor phase change models can lead to erroneous predictions.

Among the liquid-vapor phase change models, the kinetic theory gas (KTG) based models and the energy jump model are the most popular ones used in recent self-pressurization simulations [6]. The KTG based models, also known as the Hertz-Knudsen relation models, were developed on the concept of the Maxwell-Boltzmann distribution of the gas molecular [7]. The Hertz-Knudsen relation has evolved to several models, including the Schrage model [8], the Tanasawa model [9], the Lee model [10] and the statistical rate theory (SRT) [11], which will be described in Section 2.2. Since the Schrage model and the Lee model are embedded and configured as the default ones in the commercial CFD solvers Flow-3D® and Ansys Fluent® respectively, they have been widely used in self-pressurization simulations for liquid nitrogen [12], [13] and liquid hydrogen [14], [15]. The major drawback of the KTG models lies in the difficulty of selecting model coefficients, which were reported in a considerably wide range spanning three magnitudes even for the same working fluid [16], [17], [18], [19], [20], [21]. Studies showed that the liquid level, pressure and mass transfer rate are directly influenced by the model coefficients [16], [22], [23], [24], [25]. Wrong coefficients will lead to deviation or even divergence of the results. The energy jump model is also known as the thermal limitation model. It assumes that the evaporation and condensation at the liquid-vapor interface are induced only by heat conduction. The model is widely adopted in lumped node simulations due to its simplicity [6], [26], [27]. To improve the accuracy of mass flux prediction, the energy jump model was modified by including the convection heat transfer [28], [29]. However, the convection correlations are empirical and developed mainly for room-temperature fluids. Whether the correlation itself can be precisely applied in cryogenic simulations still needs further investigation.

Fig. 1 summarizes the cryogenic simulations involving the modeling of evaporation and condensation processes in recent years. The publication has been increasing rapidly. However, the characteristics of each evaporation and condensation model are not explicitly revealed when simulating self-pressurization. A comparative study of the phase change models is highly needed for cryogenic fluids for a better simulation of the self-pressurization processes.

In the present paper, a unified multi-phase solver incorporating four typical liquid-vapor phase change models, namely the Tanasawa model, the Lee model, the energy jump model, and the modified energy jump model has been proposed, which enables direct comparison among different models. The models are used to simulate the pressure and temperature evolutions in an experimental liquid nitrogen tank in normal gravity, which helps to evaluate themselves in the aspects of accuracy, calculation speed and robustness.

Section snippets

Governing equations for the self-pressurization tank

In the present study, both the fluid domain and the solid wall of the tank are modeled and discretized. The heat transportation at the solid boundaries is considered to be irrelevant with the nearby fluid velocity. Consequently, two sets of the solid and the fluid governing equations can be decoupled and solved separately. The pressures in the cryogenic container are usually from 100 kPa to 300 kPa. Under these conditions, the Knudsen number is far smaller than 0.01, and the fluids are

Self-pressurization results and phase change model comparison

This section compares the simulation results by different phase change models. Section 3.1 compares the pressure and temperature outputs from two KTG based models, namely the Lee model and the Tanasawa model. Section 3.2 presents the pressure predictions from the energy transport models, namely the energy jump model and the modified energy jump model, and compares pressure prediction performances between the KTG based models and the energy transport models. Section 3.3 evaluates the four models 

Conclusion

A unified vapor-liquid-solid multi-phase numerical solver has been accomplished for the self pressurization simulation in cryogenic containers. Compared to the early fluid-only solver, the temperature prediction in the vicinity of the tank wall improves significantly. Four liquid-vapor phase change models were integrated into the solver, which enables fair and effective comparison for performances between each other. The pressure and temperature prediction accuracies, and the calculation speed

CRediT authorship contribution statement

Zhongqi Zuo: Data curation, Formal analysis, Writing – original draft, Validation. Jingyi Wu: Conceptualization, Writing – review & editing, Validation. Yonghua Huang: Conceptualization, Formal analysis, Writing – review & editing, Validation.

Declaration of Competing Interest

Authors declare that they have no financial and personal relationships with other people or organizations that can inappropriately influence our work, there is no professional or other personal interest of any nature or kind in any product, service and/or company that could be construed as influencing the position presented in, or the review of, the manuscript entitled, “Validity evaluation of popular liquid-vapor phase change models for cryogenic self-pressurization process”.

Acknowledgement

This project is supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 51936006).

References (40)

There are more references available in the full text version of this article.

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Figure 11. Sketch of scour mechanism around USAF under random waves.

Scour Characteristics and Equilibrium Scour Depth Prediction around Umbrella Suction Anchor Foundation under Random Waves

by Ruigeng Hu 1,Hongjun Liu 2,Hao Leng 1,Peng Yu 3 andXiuhai Wang 1,2,*

1College of Environmental Science and Engineering, Ocean University of China, Qingdao 266000, China

2Key Lab of Marine Environment and Ecology (Ocean University of China), Ministry of Education, Qingdao 266000, China

3Qingdao Geo-Engineering Survering Institute, Qingdao 266100, China

*Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.

J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 20219(8), 886; https://doi.org/10.3390/jmse9080886

Received: 6 July 2021 / Revised: 8 August 2021 / Accepted: 13 August 2021 / Published: 17 August 2021

(This article belongs to the Section Ocean Engineering)

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Abstract

A series of numerical simulation were conducted to study the local scour around umbrella suction anchor foundation (USAF) under random waves. In this study, the validation was carried out firstly to verify the accuracy of the present model. Furthermore, the scour evolution and scour mechanism were analyzed respectively. In addition, two revised models were proposed to predict the equilibrium scour depth Seq around USAF. At last, a parametric study was carried out to study the effects of the Froude number Fr and Euler number Eu for the Seq. The results indicate that the present numerical model is accurate and reasonable for depicting the scour morphology under random waves. The revised Raaijmakers’s model shows good agreement with the simulating results of the present study when KCs,p < 8. The predicting results of the revised stochastic model are the most favorable for n = 10 when KCrms,a < 4. The higher Fr and Eu both lead to the more intensive horseshoe vortex and larger Seq.

Keywords: 

scournumerical investigationrandom wavesequilibrium scour depthKC number

1. Introduction

The rapid expansion of cities tends to cause social and economic problems, such as environmental pollution and traffic jam. As a kind of clean energy, offshore wind power has developed rapidly in recent years. The foundation of offshore wind turbine (OWT) supports the upper tower, and suffers the cyclic loading induced by waves, tides and winds, which exerts a vital influence on the OWT system. The types of OWT foundation include the fixed and floating foundation, and the fixed foundation was used usually for nearshore wind turbine. After the construction of fixed foundation, the hydrodynamic field changes in the vicinity of the foundation, leading to the horseshoe vortex formation and streamline compression at the upside and sides of foundation respectively [1,2,3,4]. As a result, the neighboring soil would be carried away by the shear stress induced by vortex, and the scour hole would emerge in the vicinity of foundation. The scour holes increase the cantilever length, and weaken the lateral bearing capacity of foundation [5,6,7,8,9]. Moreover, the natural frequency of OWT system increases with the increase of cantilever length, causing the resonance occurs when the system natural frequency equals the wave or wind frequency [10,11,12]. Given that, an innovative foundation called umbrella suction anchor foundation (USAF) has been designed for nearshore wind power. The previous studies indicated the USAF was characterized by the favorable lateral bearing capacity with the low cost [6,13,14]. The close-up of USAF is shown in Figure 1, and it includes six parts: 1-interal buckets, 2-external skirt, 3-anchor ring, 4-anchor branch, 5-supporting rod, 6-telescopic hook. The detailed description and application method of USAF can be found in reference [13].

Jmse 09 00886 g001 550

Figure 1. The close-up of umbrella suction anchor foundation (USAF).

Numerical and experimental investigations of scour around OWT foundation under steady currents and waves have been extensively studied by many researchers [1,2,15,16,17,18,19,20,21,22,23,24]. The seabed scour can be classified as two types according to Shields parameter θ, i.e., clear bed scour (θ < θcr) or live bed scour (θ > θcr). Due to the set of foundation, the adverse hydraulic pressure gradient exists at upstream foundation edges, resulting in the streamline separation between boundary layer flow and seabed. The separating boundary layer ascended at upstream anchor edges and developed into the horseshoe vortex. Then, the horseshoe vortex moved downstream gradually along the periphery of the anchor, and the vortex shed off continually at the lee-side of the anchor, i.e., wake vortex. The core of wake vortex is a negative pressure center, liking a vacuum cleaner. Hence, the soil particles were swirled into the negative pressure core and carried away by wake vortexes. At the same time, the onset of scour at rear side occurred. Finally, the wake vortex became downflow when the turbulence energy could not support the survival of wake vortex. According to Tavouktsoglou et al. [25], the scale of pile wall boundary layer is proportional to 1/ln(Rd) (Rd is pile Reynolds), which means the turbulence intensity induced by the flow-structure interaction would decrease with Rd increases, but the effects of Rd can be neglected only if the flow around the foundation is fully turbulent [26]. According to previous studies [1,15,27,28,29,30,31,32], the scour development around pile foundation under waves was significantly influenced by Shields parameter θ and KC number simultaneously (calculated by Equation (1)). Sand ripples widely existed around pile under waves in the case of live bed scour, and the scour morphology is related with θ and KC. Compared with θKC has a greater influence on the scour morphology [21,27,28]. The influence mechanism of KC on the scour around the pile is reflected in two aspects: the horseshoe vortex at upstream and wake vortex shedding at downstream.

KC=UwmTD��=�wm��(1)

where, Uwm is the maximum velocity of the undisturbed wave-induced oscillatory flow at the sea bottom above the wave boundary layer, T is wave period, and D is pile diameter.

There are two prerequisites to satisfy the formation of horseshoe vortex at upstream pile edges: (1) the incoming flow boundary layer with sufficient thickness and (2) the magnitude of upstream adverse pressure gradient making the boundary layer separating [1,15,16,18,20]. The smaller KC results the lower adverse pressure gradient, and the boundary layer cannot separate, herein, there is almost no horseshoe vortex emerging at upside of pile. Sumer et al. [1,15] carried out several sets of wave flume experiments under regular and irregular waves respectively, and the experiment results show that there is no horseshoe vortex when KC is less than 6. While the scale and lifespan of horseshoe vortex increase evidently with the increase of KC when KC is larger than 6. Moreover, the wake vortex contributes to the scour at lee-side of pile. Similar with the case of horseshoe vortex, there is no wake vortex when KC is less than 6. The wake vortex is mainly responsible for scour around pile when KC is greater than 6 and less than O(100), while horseshoe vortex controls scour nearly when KC is greater than O(100).

Sumer et al. [1] found that the equilibrium scour depth was nil around pile when KC was less than 6 under regular waves for live bed scour, while the equilibrium scour depth increased with the increase of KC. Based on that, Sumer proposed an equilibrium scour depth predicting equation (Equation (2)). Carreiras et al. [33] revised Sumer’s equation with m = 0.06 for nonlinear waves. Different with the findings of Sumer et al. [1] and Carreiras et al. [33], Corvaro et al. [21] found the scour still occurred for KC ≈ 4, and proposed the revised equilibrium scour depth predicting equation (Equation (3)) for KC > 4.

Rudolph and Bos [2] conducted a series of wave flume experiments to investigate the scour depth around monopile under waves only, waves and currents combined respectively, indicting KC was one of key parameters in influencing equilibrium scour depth, and proposed the equilibrium scour depth predicting equation (Equation (4)) for low KC (1 < KC < 10). Through analyzing the extensive data from published literatures, Raaijmakers and Rudolph [34] developed the equilibrium scour depth predicting equation (Equation (5)) for low KC, which was suitable for waves only, waves and currents combined. Khalfin [35] carried out several sets of wave flume experiments to study scour development around monopile, and proposed the equilibrium scour depth predicting equation (Equation (6)) for low KC (0.1 < KC < 3.5). Different with above equations, the Khalfin’s equation considers the Shields parameter θ and KC number simultaneously in predicting equilibrium scour depth. The flow reversal occurred under through in one wave period, so sand particles would be carried away from lee-side of pile to upside, resulting in sand particles backfilled into the upstream scour hole [20,29]. Considering the backfilling effects, Zanke et al. [36] proposed the equilibrium scour depth predicting equation (Equation (7)) around pile by theoretical analysis, and the equation is suitable for the whole range of KC number under regular waves and currents combined.

S/D=1.3(1−exp([−m(KC−6)])�/�=1.3(1−exp(−�(��−6))(2)

where, m = 0.03 for linear waves.

S/D=1.3(1−exp([−0.02(KC−4)])�/�=1.3(1−exp(−0.02(��−4))(3)

S/D=1.3γKwaveKhw�/�=1.3��wave�ℎw(4)

where, γ is safety factor, depending on design process, typically γ = 1.5, Kwave is correction factor considering wave action, Khw is correction factor considering water depth.

S/D=1.5[tanh(hwD)]KwaveKhw�/�=1.5tanh(ℎw�)�wave�ℎw(5)

where, hw is water depth.

S/D=0.0753(θθcr−−−√−0.5)0.69KC0.68�/�=0.0753(��cr−0.5)0.69��0.68(6)

where, θ is shields parameter, θcr is critical shields parameter.

S/D=2.5(1−0.5u/uc)xrelxrel=xeff/(1+xeff)xeff=0.03(1−0.35ucr/u)(KC−6)⎫⎭⎬⎪⎪�/�=2.5(1−0.5�/��)��������=����/(1+����)����=0.03(1−0.35�cr/�)(��−6)(7)

where, u is near-bed orbital velocity amplitude, uc is critical velocity corresponding the onset of sediment motion.

S/D=1.3{1−exp[−0.03(KC2lnn+36)1/2−6]}�/�=1.31−exp−0.03(��2ln�+36)1/2−6(8)

where, n is the 1/n’th highest wave for random waves

For predicting equilibrium scour depth under irregular waves, i.e., random waves, Sumer and Fredsøe [16] found it’s suitable to take Equation (2) to predict equilibrium scour depth around pile under random waves with the root-mean-square (RMS) value of near-bed orbital velocity amplitude Um and peak wave period TP to calculate KC. Khalfin [35] recommended the RMS wave height Hrms and peak wave period TP were used to calculate KC for Equation (6). References [37,38,39,40] developed a series of stochastic theoretical models to predict equilibrium scour depth around pile under random waves, nonlinear random waves plus currents respectively. The stochastic approach thought the 1/n’th highest wave were responsible for scour in vicinity of pile under random waves, and the KC was calculated in Equation (8) with Um and mean zero-crossing wave period Tz. The results calculated by Equation (8) agree well with experimental values of Sumer and Fredsøe [16] if the 1/10′th highest wave was used. To author’s knowledge, the stochastic approach proposed by Myrhaug and Rue [37] is the only theoretical model to predict equilibrium scour depth around pile under random waves for the whole range of KC number in published documents. Other methods of predicting scour depth under random waves are mainly originated from the equation for regular waves-only, waves and currents combined, which are limited to the large KC number, such as KC > 6 for Equation (2) and KC > 4 for Equation (3) respectively. However, situations with relatively low KC number (KC < 4) often occur in reality, for example, monopile or suction anchor for OWT foundations in ocean environment. Moreover, local scour around OWT foundations under random waves has not yet been investigated fully. Therefore, further study are still needed in the aspect of scour around OWT foundations with low KC number under random waves. Given that, this study presents the scour sediment model around umbrella suction anchor foundation (USAF) under random waves. In this study, a comparison of equilibrium scour depth around USAF between this present numerical models and the previous theoretical models and experimental results was presented firstly. Then, this study gave a comprehensive analysis for the scour mechanisms around USAF. After that, two revised models were proposed according to the model of Raaijmakers and Rudolph [34] and the stochastic model developed by Myrhaug and Rue [37] respectively to predict the equilibrium scour depth. Finally, a parametric study was conducted to study the effects of the Froude number (Fr) and Euler number (Eu) to equilibrium scour depth respectively.

2. Numerical Method

2.1. Governing Equations of Flow

The following equations adopted in present model are already available in Flow 3D software. The authors used these theoretical equations to simulate scour in random waves without modification. The incompressible viscous fluid motion satisfies the Reynolds-averaged Navier-Stokes (RANS) equation, so the present numerical model solves RANS equations:

∂u∂t+1VF(uAx∂u∂x+vAy∂u∂y+wAz∂u∂z)=−1ρf∂p∂x+Gx+fx∂�∂�+1��(���∂�∂�+���∂�∂�+���∂�∂�)=−1�f∂�∂�+��+��(9)

∂v∂t+1VF(uAx∂v∂x+vAy∂v∂y+wAz∂v∂z)=−1ρf∂p∂y+Gy+fy∂�∂�+1��(���∂�∂�+���∂�∂�+���∂�∂�)=−1�f∂�∂�+��+��(10)

∂w∂t+1VF(uAx∂w∂x+vAy∂w∂y+wAz∂w∂z)=−1ρf∂p∂z+Gz+fz∂�∂�+1��(���∂�∂�+���∂�∂�+���∂�∂�)=−1�f∂�∂�+��+��(11)

where, VF is the volume fraction; uv, and w are the velocity components in xyz direction respectively with Cartesian coordinates; Ai is the area fraction; ρf is the fluid density, fi is the viscous fluid acceleration, Gi is the fluid body acceleration (i = xyz).

2.2. Turbulent Model

The turbulence closure is available by the turbulent model, such as one-equation, the one-equation k-ε model, the standard k-ε model, RNG k-ε turbulent model and large eddy simulation (LES) model. The LES model requires very fine mesh grid, so the computational time is large, which hinders the LES model application in engineering. The RNG k-ε model can reduce computational time greatly with high accuracy in the near-wall region. Furthermore, the RNG k-ε model computes the maximum turbulent mixing length dynamically in simulating sediment scour model. Therefore, the RNG k-ε model was adopted to study the scour around anchor under random waves [41,42].

∂kT∂T+1VF(uAx∂kT∂x+vAy∂kT∂y+wAz∂kT∂z)=PT+GT+DiffkT−εkT∂��∂�+1��(���∂��∂�+���∂��∂�+���∂��∂�)=��+��+������−���(12)

∂εT∂T+1VF(uAx∂εT∂x+vAy∂εT∂y+wAz∂εT∂z)=CDIS1εTkT(PT+CDIS3GT)+Diffε−CDIS2ε2TkT∂��∂�+1��(���∂��∂�+���∂��∂�+���∂��∂�)=����1����(��+����3��)+�����−����2��2��(13)

where, kT is specific kinetic energy involved with turbulent velocity, GT is the turbulent energy generated by buoyancy; εT is the turbulent energy dissipating rate, PT is the turbulent energy, Diffε and DiffkT are diffusion terms associated with VFAiCDIS1CDIS2 and CDIS3 are dimensionless parameters, and CDIS1CDIS3 have default values of 1.42, 0.2 respectively. CDIS2 can be obtained from PT and kT.

2.3. Sediment Scour Model

The sand particles may suffer four processes under waves, i.e., entrainment, bed load transport, suspended load transport, and deposition, so the sediment scour model should depict the above processes efficiently. In present numerical simulation, the sediment scour model includes the following aspects:

2.3.1. Entrainment and Deposition

The combination of entrainment and deposition determines the net scour rate of seabed in present sediment scour model. The entrainment lift velocity of sand particles was calculated as [43]:

ulift,i=αinsd0.3∗(θ−θcr)1.5∥g∥di(ρi−ρf)ρf−−−−−−−−−−−−√�lift,i=�����*0.3(�−�cr)1.5���(��−�f)�f(14)

where, αi is the entrainment parameter, ns is the outward point perpendicular to the seabed, d* is the dimensionless diameter of sand particles, which was calculated by Equation (15), θcr is the critical Shields parameter, g is the gravity acceleration, di is the diameter of sand particles, ρi is the density of seabed species.

d∗=di(∥g∥ρf(ρi−ρf)μ2f)1/3�*=��(��f(��−�f)�f2)1/3(15)

where μf is the fluid dynamic viscosity.

In Equation (14), the entrainment parameter αi confirms the rate at which sediment erodes when the given shear stress is larger than the critical shear stress, and the recommended value 0.018 was adopted according to the experimental data of Mastbergen and Von den Berg [43]. ns is the outward pointing normal to the seabed interface, and ns = (0,0,1) according to the Cartesian coordinates used in present numerical model.

The shields parameter was obtained from the following equation:

θ=U2f,m(ρi/ρf−1)gd50�=�f,m2(��/�f−1)��50(16)

where, Uf,m is the maximum value of the near-bed friction velocity; d50 is the median diameter of sand particles. The detailed calculation procedure of θ was available in Soulsby [44].

The critical shields parameter θcr was obtained from the Equation (17) [44]

θcr=0.31+1.2d∗+0.055[1−exp(−0.02d∗)]�cr=0.31+1.2�*+0.0551−exp(−0.02�*)(17)

The sand particles begin to deposit on seabed when the turbulence energy weaken and cann’t support the particles suspending. The setting velocity of the particles was calculated from the following equation [44]:

usettling,i=νfdi[(10.362+1.049d3∗)0.5−10.36]�settling,�=�f��(10.362+1.049�*3)0.5−10.36(18)

where νf is the fluid kinematic viscosity.

2.3.2. Bed Load Transport

This is called bed load transport when the sand particles roll or bounce over the seabed and always have contact with seabed. The bed load transport velocity was computed by [45]:

ubedload,i=qb,iδicb,ifb�bedload,�=�b,����b,��b(19)

where, qb,i is the bed load transport rate, which was obtained from Equation (20), δi is the bed load thickness, which was calculated by Equation (21), cb,i is the volume fraction of sand i in the multiple species, fb is the critical packing fraction of the seabed.

qb,i=8[∥g∥(ρi−ρfρf)d3i]1/2�b,�=8�(��−�f�f)��31/2(20)

δi=0.3d0.7∗(θθcr−1)0.5di��=0.3�*0.7(��cr−1)0.5��(21)

2.3.3. Suspended Load Transport

Through the following transport equation, the suspended sediment concentration could be acquired.

∂Cs,i∂t+∇(us,iCs,i)=∇∇(DfCs,i)∂�s,�∂�+∇(�s,��s,�)=∇∇(�f�s,�)(22)

where, Cs,i is the suspended sand particles mass concentration of sand i in the multiple species, us,i is the sand particles velocity of sand iDf is the diffusivity.

The velocity of sand i in the multiple species could be obtained from the following equation:

us,i=u¯¯+usettling,ics,i�s,�=�¯+�settling,��s,�(23)

where, u¯�¯ is the velocity of mixed fluid-particles, which can be calculated by the RANS equation with turbulence model, cs,i is the suspended sand particles volume concentration, which was computed from Equation (24).

cs,i=Cs,iρi�s,�=�s,���(24)

3. Model Setup

The seabed-USAF-wave three-dimensional scour numerical model was built using Flow-3D software. As shown in Figure 2, the model includes sandy seabed, USAF model, sea water, two baffles and porous media. The dimensions of USAF are shown in Table 1. The sandy bed (210 m in length, 30 m in width and 11 m in height) is made up of uniform fine sand with median diameter d50 = 0.041 cm. The USAF model includes upper steel tube with the length of 20 m, which was installed in the middle of seabed. The location of USAF is positioned at 140 m from the upstream inflow boundary and 70 m from the downstream outflow boundary. Two baffles were installed at two ends of seabed. In order to eliminate the wave reflection basically, the porous media was set at the outflow side on the seabed.

Jmse 09 00886 g002 550

Figure 2. (a) The sketch of seabed-USAF-wave three-dimensional model; (b) boundary condation:Wv-wave boundary, S-symmetric boundary, O-outflow boundary; (c) USAF model.

Table 1. Numerical simulating cases.

Table

3.1. Mesh Geometric Dimensions

In the simulation of the scour under the random waves, the model includes the umbrella suction anchor foundation, seabed and fluid. As shown in Figure 3, the model mesh includes global mesh grid and nested mesh grid, and the total number of grids is 1,812,000. The basic procedure for building mesh grid consists of two steps. Step 1: Divide the global mesh using regular hexahedron with size of 0.6 × 0.6. The global mesh area is cubic box, embracing the seabed and whole fluid volume, and the dimensions are 210 m in length, 30 m in width and 32 m in height. The details of determining the grid size can see the following mesh sensitivity section. Step 2: Set nested fine mesh grid in vicinity of the USAF with size of 0.3 × 0.3 so as to shorten the computation cost and improve the calculation accuracy. The encryption range is −15 m to 15 m in x direction, −15 m to 15 m in y direction and 0 m to 32 m in z direction, respectively. In order to accurately capture the free-surface dynamics, such as the fluid-air interface, the volume of fluid (VOF) method was adopted for tracking the free water surface. One specific algorithm called FAVORTM (Fractional Area/Volume Obstacle Representation) was used to define the fractional face areas and fractional volumes of the cells which are open to fluid flow.

Jmse 09 00886 g003 550

Figure 3. The sketch of mesh grid.

3.2. Boundary Conditions

As shown in Figure 2, the initial fluid length is 210 m as long as seabed. A wave boundary was specified at the upstream offshore end. The details of determining the random wave spectrum can see the following wave parameters section. The outflow boundary was set at the downstream onshore end. The symmetry boundary was used at the top and two sides of the model. The symmetric boundaries were the better strategy to improve the computation efficiency and save the calculation cost [46]. At the seabed bottom, the wall boundary was adopted, which means the u = v = w= 0. Besides, the upper steel tube of USAF was set as no-slip condition.

3.3. Wave Parameters

The random waves with JONSWAP wave spectrum were used for all simulations as realistic representation of offshore conditions. The unidirectional JONSWAP frequency spectrum was described as [47]:

S(ω)=αg2ω5exp[−54(ωpω)4]γexp[−(ω−ωp)22σ2ω2p]�(�)=��2�5exp−54(�p�)4�exp−(�−�p)22�2�p2(25)

where, α is wave energy scale parameter, which is calculated by Equation (26), ω is frequency, ωp is wave spectrum peak frequency, which can be obtained from Equation (27). γ is wave spectrum peak enhancement factor, in this study γ = 3.3. σ is spectral width factor, σ equals 0.07 for ω ≤ ωp and 0.09 for ω > ωp respectively.

α=0.0076(gXU2)−0.22�=0.0076(���2)−0.22(26)

ωp=22(gU)(gXU2)−0.33�p=22(��)(���2)−0.33(27)

where, X is fetch length, U is average wind velocity at 10 m height from mean sea level.

In present numerical model, the input key parameters include X and U for wave boundary with JONSWAP wave spectrum. The objective wave height and period are available by different combinations of X and U. In this study, we designed 9 cases with different wave heights, periods and water depths for simulating scour around USAF under random waves (see Table 2). For random waves, the wave steepness ε and Ursell number Ur were acquired form Equations (28) and (29) respectively

ε=2πgHsT2a�=2���s�a2(28)

Ur=Hsk2h3w�r=�s�2ℎw3(29)

where, Hs is significant wave height, Ta is average wave period, k is wave number, hw is water depth. The Shield parameter θ satisfies θ > θcr for all simulations in current study, indicating the live bed scour prevails.

Table 2. Numerical simulating cases.

Table

3.4. Mesh Sensitivity

In this section, a mesh sensitivity analysis was conducted to investigate the influence of mesh grid size to results and make sure the calculation is mesh size independent and converged. Three mesh grid size were chosen: Mesh 1—global mesh grid size of 0.75 × 0.75, nested fine mesh grid size of 0.4 × 0.4, and total number of grids 1,724,000, Mesh 2—global mesh grid size of 0.6 × 0.6, nested fine mesh grid size of 0.3 × 0.3, and total number of grids 1,812,000, Mesh 3—global mesh grid size of 0.4 × 0.4, nested fine mesh grid size of 0.2 × 0.2, and total number of grids 1,932,000. The near-bed shear velocity U* is an important factor for influencing scour process [1,15], so U* at the position of (4,0,11.12) was evaluated under three mesh sizes. As the Figure 4 shown, the maximum error of shear velocity ∆U*1,2 is about 39.8% between the mesh 1 and mesh 2, and 4.8% between the mesh 2 and mesh 3. According to the mesh sensitivity criterion adopted by Pang et al. [48], it’s reasonable to think the results are mesh size independent and converged with mesh 2. Additionally, the present model was built according to prototype size, and the mesh size used in present model is larger than the mesh size adopted by Higueira et al. [49] and Corvaro et al. [50]. If we choose the smallest cell size, it will take too much time. For example, the simulation with Mesh3 required about 260 h by using a computer with Intel Xeon Scalable Gold 4214 CPU @24 Cores, 2.2 GHz and 64.00 GB RAM. Therefore, in this case, considering calculation accuracy and computation efficiency, the mesh 2 was chosen for all the simulation in this study.

Jmse 09 00886 g004 550

Figure 4. Comparison of near-bed shear velocity U* with different mesh grid size.

The nested mesh block was adopted for seabed in vicinity of the USAF, which was overlapped with the global mesh block. When two mesh blocks overlap each other, the governing equations are by default solved on the mesh block with smaller average cell size (i.e., higher grid resolution). It is should be noted that the Flow 3D software used the moving mesh captures the scour evolution and automatically adjusts the time step size to be as large as possible without exceeding any of the stability limits, affecting accuracy, or unduly increasing the effort required to enforce the continuity condition [51].

3.5. Model Validation

In order to verify the reliability of the present model, the results of present study were compared with the experimental data of Khosronejad et al. [52]. The experiment was conducted in an open channel with a slender vertical pile under unidirectional currents. The comparison of scour development between the present results and the experimental results is shown in Figure 5. The Figure 5 reveals that the present results agree well with the experimental data of Khosronejad et al. [52]. In the first stage, the scour depth increases rapidly. After that, the scour depth achieves a maximum value gradually. The equilibrium scour depth calculated by the present model is basically corresponding with the experimental results of Khosronejad et al. [52], although scour depth in the present model is slightly larger than the experimental results at initial stage.

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Figure 5. Comparison of time evolution of scour between the present study and Khosronejad et al. [52], Petersen et al. [17].

Secondly, another comparison was further conducted between the results of present study and the experimental data of Petersen et al. [17]. The experiment was carried out in a flume with a circular vertical pile in combined waves and current. Figure 4 shows a comparison of time evolution of scour depth between the simulating and the experimental results. As Figure 5 indicates, the scour depth in this study has good overall agreement with the experimental results proposed in Petersen et al. [17]. The equilibrium scour depth calculated by the present model is 0.399 m, which equals to the experimental value basically. Overall, the above verifications prove the present model is accurate and capable in dealing with sediment scour under waves.

In addition, in order to calibrate and validate the present model for hydrodynamic parameters, the comparison of water surface elevation was carried out with laboratory experiments conducted by Stahlmann [53] for wave gauge No. 3. The Figure 6 depicts the surface wave profiles between experiments and numerical model results. The comparison indicates that there is a good agreement between the model results and experimental values, especially the locations of wave crest and trough. Comparison of the surface elevation instructs the present model has an acceptable relative error, and the model is a calibrated in terms of the hydrodynamic parameters.

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Figure 6. Comparison of surface elevation between the present study and Stahlmann [53].

Finally, another comparison was conducted for equilibrium scour depth or maximum scour depth under random waves with the experimental data of Sumer and Fredsøe [16] and Schendel et al. [22]. The Figure 7 shows the comparison between the numerical results and experimental data of Run01, Run05, Run21 and Run22 in Sumer and Fredsøe [16] and test A05 and A09 in Schendel et al. [22]. As shown in Figure 7, the equilibrium scour depth or maximum scour depth distributed within the ±30 error lines basically, meaning the reliability and accuracy of present model for predicting equilibrium scour depth around foundation in random waves. However, compared with the experimental values, the present model overestimated the equilibrium scour depth generally. Given that, a calibration for scour depth was carried out by multiplying the mean reduced coefficient 0.85 in following section.

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Figure 7. Comparison of equilibrium (or maximum) scour depth between the present study and Sumer and Fredsøe [16], Schendel et al. [22].

Through the various examination for hydrodynamic and morphology parameters, it can be concluded that the present model is a validated and calibrated model for scour under random waves. Thus, the present numerical model would be utilized for scour simulation around foundation under random waves.

4. Numerical Results and Discussions

4.1. Scour Evolution

Figure 8 displays the scour evolution for case 1–9. As shown in Figure 8a, the scour depth increased rapidly at the initial stage, and then slowed down at the transition stage, which attributes to the backfilling occurred in scour holes under live bed scour condition, resulting in the net scour decreasing. Finally, the scour reached the equilibrium state when the amount of sediment backfilling equaled to that of scouring in the scour holes, i.e., the net scour transport rate was nil. Sumer and Fredsøe [16] proposed the following formula for the scour development under waves

St=Seq(1−exp(−t/Tc))�t=�eq(1−exp(−�/�c))(30)

where Tc is time scale of scour process.

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Figure 8. Time evolution of scour for case 1–9: (a) Case 1–5; (b) Case 6–9.

The computing time is 3600 s and the scour development curves in Figure 8 kept fluctuating, meaning it’s still not in equilibrium scour stage in these cases. According to Sumer and Fredsøe [16], the equilibrium scour depth can be acquired by fitting the data with Equation (30). From Figure 8, it can be seen that the scour evolution obtained from Equation (30) is consistent with the present study basically at initial stage, but the scour depth predicted by Equation (30) developed slightly faster than the simulating results and the Equation (30) overestimated the scour depth to some extent. Overall, the whole tendency of the results calculated by Equation (30) agrees well with the simulating results of the present study, which means the Equation (30) is applicable to depict the scour evolution around USAF under random waves.

4.2. Scour Mechanism under Random Waves

The scour morphology and scour evolution around USAF are similar under random waves in case 1~9. Taking case 7 as an example, the scour morphology is shown in Figure 9.

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Figure 9. Scour morphology under different times for case 7.

From Figure 9, at the initial stage (t < 1200 s), the scour occurred at upstream foundation edges between neighboring anchor branches. The maximum scour depth appeared at the lee-side of the USAF. Correspondingly, the sediments deposited at the periphery of the USAF, and the location of the maximum accretion depth was positioned at an angle of about 45° symmetrically with respect to the wave propagating direction in the lee-side of the USAF. After that, when t > 2400 s, the location of the maximum scour depth shifted to the upside of the USAF at an angle of about 45° with respect to the wave propagating direction.

According to previous studies [1,15,16,19,30,31], the horseshoe vortex, streamline compression and wake vortex shedding were responsible for scour around foundation. The Figure 10 displays the distribution of flow velocity in vicinity of foundation, which reflects the evolving processes of horseshoe vertex.

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Figure 10. Velocity profile around USAF: (a) Flow runup and down stream at upstream anchor edges; (b) Horseshoe vortex at upstream anchor edges; (c) Flow reversal during wave through stage at lee side.

As shown in Figure 10, the inflow tripped to the upstream edges of the USAF and it was blocked by the upper tube of USAF. Then, the downflow formed the horizontal axis clockwise vortex and rolled on the seabed bypassing the tube, that is, the horseshoe vortex (Figure 11). The Figure 12 displays the turbulence intensity around the tube on the seabed. From Figure 12, it can be seen that the turbulence intensity was high-intensity with respect to the region of horseshoe vortex. This phenomenon occurred because of drastic water flow momentum exchanging in the horseshoe vortex. As a result, it created the prominent shear stress on the seabed, causing the local scour at the upstream edges of USAF. Besides, the horseshoe vortex moved downstream gradually along the periphery of the tube and the wake vortex shed off continually at the lee-side of the USAF, i.e., wake vortex.

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Figure 11. Sketch of scour mechanism around USAF under random waves.

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Figure 12. Turbulence intensity: (a) Turbulence intensity of horseshoe vortex; (b) Turbulence intensity of wake vortex; (c) Turbulence intensity of accretion area.

The core of wake vortex is a negative pressure center, liking a vacuum cleaner [11,42]. Hence, the soil particles were swirled into the negative pressure core and carried away by wake vortex. At the same time, the onset of scour at rear side occurred. Finally, the wake vortex became downflow at the downside of USAF. As is shown in Figure 12, the turbulence intensity was low where the downflow occurred at lee-side, which means the turbulence energy may not be able to support the survival of wake vortex, leading to accretion happening. As mentioned in previous section, the formation of horseshoe vortex was dependent with adverse pressure gradient at upside of foundation. As shown in Figure 13, the evaluated range of pressure distribution is −15 m to 15 m in x direction. The t = 450 s and t = 1800 s indicate that the wave crest and trough arrived at the upside and lee-side of the foundation respectively, and the t = 350 s was neither the wave crest nor trough. The adverse gradient pressure reached the maximum value at t = 450 s corresponding to the wave crest phase. In this case, it’s helpful for the wave boundary separating fully from seabed, which leads to the formation of horseshoe vortex with high turbulence intensity. Therefore, the horseshoe vortex is responsible for the local scour between neighboring anchor branches at upside of USAF. What’s more, due to the combination of the horseshoe vortex and streamline compression, the maximum scour depth occurred at the upside of the USAF with an angle of about 45° corresponding to the wave propagating direction. This is consistent with the findings of Pang et al. [48] and Sumer et al. [1,15] in case of regular waves. At the wave trough phase (t = 1800 s), the pressure gradient became positive at upstream USAF edges, which hindered the separating of wave boundary from seabed. In the meantime, the flow reversal occurred (Figure 10) and the adverse gradient pressure appeared at downstream USAF edges, but the magnitude of adverse gradient pressure at lee-side was lower than the upstream gradient pressure under wave crest. In this way, the intensity of horseshoe vortex behind the USAF under wave trough was low, which explains the difference of scour depth at upstream and downstream, i.e., the scour asymmetry. In other words, the scour asymmetry at upside and downside of USAF was attributed to wave asymmetry for random waves, and the phenomenon became more evident for nonlinear waves [21]. Briefly speaking, the vortex system at wave crest phase was mainly related to the scour process around USAF under random waves.

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Figure 13. Pressure distribution around USAF.

4.3. Equilibrium Scour Depth

The KC number is a key parameter for horseshoe vortex emerging and evolving under waves. According to Equation (1), when pile diameter D is fixed, the KC depends on the maximum near-bed velocity Uwm and wave period T. For random waves, the Uwm can be denoted by the root-mean-square (RMS) value of near-bed velocity amplitude Uwm,rms or the significant value of near-bed velocity amplitude Uwm,s. The Uwm,rms and Uwm,s for all simulating cases of the present study are listed in Table 3 and Table 4. The T can be denoted by the mean up zero-crossing wave period Ta, peak wave period Tp, significant wave period Ts, the maximum wave period Tm, 1/10′th highest wave period Tn = 1/10 and 1/5′th highest wave period Tn = 1/5 for random waves, so the different combinations of Uwm and T will acquire different KC. The Table 3 and Table 4 list 12 types of KC, for example, the KCrms,s was calculated by Uwm,rms and Ts. Sumer and Fredsøe [16] conducted a series of wave flume experiments to investigate the scour depth around monopile under random waves, and found the equilibrium scour depth predicting equation (Equation (2)) for regular waves was applicable for random waves with KCrms,p. It should be noted that the Equation (2) is only suitable for KC > 6 under regular waves or KCrms,p > 6 under random waves.

Table 3. Uwm,rms and KC for case 1~9.

Table

Table 4. Uwm,s and KC for case 1~9.

Table

Raaijmakers and Rudolph [34] proposed the equilibrium scour depth predicting model (Equation (5)) around pile under waves, which is suitable for low KC. The format of Equation (5) is similar with the formula proposed by Breusers [54], which can predict the equilibrium scour depth around pile at different scour stages. In order to verify the applicability of Raaijmakers’s model for predicting the equilibrium scour depth around USAF under random waves, a validation of the equilibrium scour depth Seq between the present study and Raaijmakers’s equation was conducted. The position where the scour depth Seq was evaluated is the location of the maximum scour depth, and it was depicted in Figure 14. The Figure 15 displays the comparison of Seq with different KC between the present study and Raaijmakers’s model.

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Figure 14. Sketch of the position where the Seq was evaluated.

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Figure 15. Comparison of the equilibrium scour depth between the present model and the model of Raaijmakers and Rudolph [34]: (aKCrms,sKCrms,a; (bKCrms,pKCrms,m; (cKCrms,n = 1/10KCrms,n = 1/5; (dKCs,sKCs,a; (eKCs,pKCs,m; (fKCs,n = 1/10KCs,n = 1/5.

As shown in Figure 15, there is an error in predicting Seq between the present study and Raaijmakers’s model, and Raaijmakers’s model underestimates the results generally. Although the error exists, the varying trend of Seq with KC obtained from Raaijmakers’s model is consistent with the present study basically. What’s more, the error is minimum and the Raaijmakers’s model is of relatively high accuracy for predicting scour around USAF under random waves by using KCs,p. Based on this, a further revision was made to eliminate the error as much as possible, i.e., add the deviation value ∆S/D in the Raaijmakers’s model. The revised equilibrium scour depth predicting equation based on Raaijmakers’s model can be written as

S′eq/D=1.95[tanh(hD)](1−exp(−0.012KCs,p))+ΔS/D�eq′/�=1.95tanh(ℎ�)(1−exp(−0.012��s,p))+∆�/�(31)

As the Figure 16 shown, through trial-calculation, when ∆S/D = 0.05, the results calculated by Equation (31) show good agreement with the simulating results of the present study. The maximum error is about 18.2% and the engineering requirements have been met basically. In order to further verify the accuracy of the revised model for large KC (KCs,p > 4) under random waves, a validation between the revised model and the previous experimental results [21]. The experiment was conducted in a flume (50 m in length, 1.0 m in width and 1.3 m in height) with a slender vertical pile (D = 0.1 m) under random waves. The seabed is composed of 0.13 m deep layer of sand with d50 = 0.6 mm and the water depth is 0.5 m for all tests. The significant wave height is 0.12~0.21 m and the KCs,p is 5.52~11.38. The comparison between the predicting results by Equation (31) and the experimental results of Corvaro et al. [21] is shown in Figure 17. From Figure 17, the experimental data evenly distributes around the predicted results and the prediction accuracy is favorable when KCs,p < 8. However, the gap between the predicting results and experimental data becomes large and the Equation (31) overestimates the equilibrium scour depth to some extent when KCs,p > 8.

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Figure 16. Comparison of Seq between the simulating results and the predicting values by Equation (31).

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Figure 17. Comparison of Seq/D between the Experimental results of Corvaro et al. [21] and the predicting values by Equation (31).

In ocean environment, the waves are composed of a train of sinusoidal waves with different frequencies and amplitudes. The energy of constituent waves with very large and very small frequencies is relatively low, and the energy of waves is mainly concentrated in a certain range of moderate frequencies. Myrhaug and Rue [37] thought the 1/n’th highest wave was responsible for scour and proposed the stochastic model to predict the equilibrium scour depth around pile under random waves for full range of KC. Noteworthy is that the KC was denoted by KCrms,a in the stochastic model. To verify the application of the stochastic model for predicting scour depth around USAF, a validation between the simulating results of present study and predicting results by the stochastic model with n = 2,3,5,10,20,500 was carried out respectively.

As shown in Figure 18, compared with the simulating results, the stochastic model underestimates the equilibrium scour depth around USAF generally. Although the error exists, the varying trend of Seq with KCrms,a obtained from the stochastic model is consistent with the present study basically. What’s more, the gap between the predicting values by stochastic model and the simulating results decreases with the increase of n, but for large n, for example n = 500, the varying trend diverges between the predicting values and simulating results, meaning it’s not feasible only by increasing n in stochastic model to predict the equilibrium scour depth around USAF.

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Figure 18. Comparison of Seq between the simulating results and the predicting values by Equation (8).

The Figure 19 lists the deviation value ∆Seq/D′ between the predicting values and simulating results with different KCrms,a and n. Then, fitted the relationship between the ∆S′and n under different KCrms,a, and the fitting curve can be written by Equation (32). The revised stochastic model (Equation (33)) can be acquired by adding ∆Seq/D′ to Equation (8).

ΔSeq/D=0.052*exp(−n/6.566)+0.068∆�eq/�=0.052*exp(−�/6.566)+0.068(32)

S′eq¯/D=S′eq/D+0.052*exp(−n/6.566)+0.068�eq′¯/�=�eq′/�+0.052*exp(−�/6.566)+0.068(33)

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Figure 19. The fitting line between ∆S′and n.

The comparison between the predicting results by Equation (33) and the simulating results of present study is shown in Figure 20. According to the Figure 20, the varying trend of Seq with KCrms,a obtained from the stochastic model is consistent with the present study basically. Compared with predicting results by the stochastic model, the results calculated by Equation (33) is favorable. Moreover, comparison with simulating results indicates that the predicting results are the most favorable for n = 10, which is consistent with the findings of Myrhaug and Rue [37] for equilibrium scour depth predicting around slender pile in case of random waves.

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Figure 20. Comparison of Seq between the simulating results and the predicting values by Equation (33).

In order to further verify the accuracy of the Equation (33) for large KC (KCrms,a > 4) under random waves, a validation was conducted between the Equation (33) and the previous experimental results of Sumer and Fredsøe [16] and Corvaro et al. [21]. The details of experiments conducted by Corvaro et al. [21] were described in above section. Sumer and Fredsøe [16] investigated the local scour around pile under random waves. The experiments were conducted in a wave basin with a slender vertical pile (D = 0.032, 0.055 m). The seabed is composed of 0.14 m deep layer of sand with d50 = 0.2 mm and the water depth was maintained at 0.5 m. The JONSWAP wave spectrum was used and the KCrms,a was 5.29~16.95. The comparison between the predicting results by Equation (33) and the experimental results of Sumer and Fredsøe [16] and Corvaro et al. [21] are shown in Figure 21. From Figure 21, contrary to the case of low KCrms,a (KCrms,a < 4), the error between the predicting values and experimental results increases with decreasing of n for KCrms,a > 4. Therefore, the predicting results are the most favorable for n = 2 when KCrms,a > 4.

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Figure 21. Comparison of Seq between the experimental results of Sumer and Fredsøe [16] and Corvaro et al. [21] and the predicting values by Equation (33).

Noteworthy is that the present model was built according to prototype size, so the errors between the numerical results and experimental data of References [16,21] may be attribute to the scale effects. In laboratory experiments on scouring process, it is typically impossible to ensure a rigorous similarity of all physical parameters between the model and prototype structure, leading to the scale effects in the laboratory experiments. To avoid a cohesive behaviour, the bed material was not scaled geometrically according to model scale. As a consequence, the relatively large-scaled sediments sizes may result in the overestimation of bed load transport and underestimation of suspended load transport compared with field conditions. What’s more, the disproportional scaled sediment presumably lead to the difference of bed roughness between the model and prototype, and thus large influences for wave boundary layer on the seabed and scour process. Besides, according to Corvaro et al. [21] and Schendel et al. [55], the pile Reynolds numbers and Froude numbers both affect the scour depth for the condition of non fully developed turbulent flow in laboratory experiments.

4.4. Parametric Study

4.4.1. Influence of Froude Number

As described above, the set of foundation leads to the adverse pressure gradient appearing at upstream, leading to the wave boundary layer separating from seabed, then horseshoe vortex formatting and the horseshoe vortex are mainly responsible for scour around foundation (see Figure 22). The Froude number Fr is the key parameter to influence the scale and intensity of horseshoe vortex. The Fr under waves can be calculated by the following formula [42]

Fr=UwgD−−−√�r=�w��(34)

where Uw is the mean water particle velocity during 1/4 cycle of wave oscillation, obtained from the following formula. Noteworthy is that the root-mean-square (RMS) value of near-bed velocity amplitude Uwm,rms is used for calculating Uwm.

Uw=1T/4∫0T/4Uwmsin(t/T)dt=2πUwm�w=1�/4∫0�/4�wmsin(�/�)��=2��wm(35)

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Figure 22. Sketch of flow field at upstream USAF edges.

Tavouktsoglou et al. [25] proposed the following formula between Fr and the vertical location of the stagnation y

yh∝Fer�ℎ∝�r�(36)

where e is constant.

The Figure 23 displays the relationship between Seq/D and Fr of the present study. In order to compare with the simulating results, the experimental data of Corvaro et al. [21] was also depicted in Figure 23. As shown in Figure 23, the equilibrium scour depth appears a logarithmic increase as Fr increases and approaches the mathematical asymptotic value, which is also consistent with the experimental results of Corvaro et al. [21]. According to Figure 24, the adverse pressure gradient pressure at upstream USAF edges increases with the increase of Fr, which is benefit for the wave boundary layer separating from seabed, resulting in the high-intensity horseshoe vortex, hence, causing intensive scour around USAF. Based on the previous study of Tavouktsoglou et al. [25] for scour around pile under currents, the high Fr leads to the stagnation point is closer to the mean sea level for shallow water, causing the stronger downflow kinetic energy. As mentioned in previous section, the energy of downflow at upstream makes up the energy of the subsequent horseshoe vortex, so the stronger downflow kinetic energy results in the more intensive horseshoe vortex. Therefore, the higher Fr leads to the more intensive horseshoe vortex by influencing the position of stagnation point y presumably. Qi and Gao [19] carried out a series of flume tests to investigate the scour around pile under regular waves, and proposed the fitting formula between Seq/D and Fr as following

lg(Seq/D)=Aexp(B/Fr)+Clg(�eq/�)=�exp(�/�r)+�(37)

where AB and C are constant.

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Figure 23. The fitting curve between Seq/D and Fr.

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Figure 24. Sketch of adverse pressure gradient at upstream USAF edges.

Took the Equation (37) to fit the simulating results with A = −0.002, B = 0.686 and C = −0.808, and the results are shown in Figure 23. From Figure 23, the simulating results evenly distribute around the Equation (37) and the varying trend of Seq/D and Fr in present study is consistent with Equation (37) basically, meaning the Equation (37) is applicable to express the relationship of Seq/D with Fr around USAF under random waves.

4.4.2. Influence of Euler Number

The Euler number Eu is the influencing factor for the hydrodynamic field around foundation. The Eu under waves can be calculated by the following formula. The Eu can be represented by the Equation (38) for uniform cylinders [25]. The root-mean-square (RMS) value of near-bed velocity amplitude Um,rms is used for calculating Um.

Eu=U2mgD�u=�m2��(38)

where Um is depth-averaged flow velocity.

The Figure 25 displays the relationship between Seq/D and Eu of the present study. In order to compare with the simulating results, the experimental data of Sumer and Fredsøe [16] and Corvaro et al. [21] were also plotted in Figure 25. As shown in Figure 25, similar with the varying trend of Seq/D and Fr, the equilibrium scour depth appears a logarithmic increase as Eu increases and approaches the mathematical asymptotic value, which is also consistent with the experimental results of Sumer and Fredsøe [16] and Corvaro et al. [21]. According to Figure 24, the adverse pressure gradient pressure at upstream USAF edges increases with the increasing of Eu, which is benefit for the wave boundary layer separating from seabed, inducing the high-intensity horseshoe vortex, hence, causing intensive scour around USAF.

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Figure 25. The fitting curve between Seq/D and Eu.

Therefore, the variation of Fr and Eu reflect the magnitude of adverse pressure gradient pressure at upstream. Given that, the Equation (37) also was used to fit the simulating results with A = 8.875, B = 0.078 and C = −9.601, and the results are shown in Figure 25. From Figure 25, the simulating results evenly distribute around the Equation (37) and the varying trend of Seq/D and Eu in present study is consistent with Equation (37) basically, meaning the Equation (37) is also applicable to express the relationship of Seq/D with Eu around USAF under random waves. Additionally, according to the above description of Fr, it can be inferred that the higher Fr and Eu both lead to the more intensive horseshoe vortex by influencing the position of stagnation point y presumably.

5. Conclusions

A series of numerical models were established to investigate the local scour around umbrella suction anchor foundation (USAF) under random waves. The numerical model was validated for hydrodynamic and morphology parameters by comparing with the experimental data of Khosronejad et al. [52], Petersen et al. [17], Sumer and Fredsøe [16] and Schendel et al. [22]. Based on the simulating results, the scour evolution and scour mechanisms around USAF under random waves were analyzed respectively. Two revised models were proposed according to the model of Raaijmakers and Rudolph [34] and the stochastic model developed by Myrhaug and Rue [37] to predict the equilibrium scour depth around USAF under random waves. Finally, a parametric study was carried out with the present model to study the effects of the Froude number Fr and Euler number Eu to the equilibrium scour depth around USAF under random waves. The main conclusions can be described as follows.(1)

The packed sediment scour model and the RNG k−ε turbulence model were used to simulate the sand particles transport processes and the flow field around UASF respectively. The scour evolution obtained by the present model agrees well with the experimental results of Khosronejad et al. [52], Petersen et al. [17], Sumer and Fredsøe [16] and Schendel et al. [22], which indicates that the present model is accurate and reasonable for depicting the scour morphology around UASF under random waves.(2)

The vortex system at wave crest phase is mainly related to the scour process around USAF under random waves. The maximum scour depth appeared at the lee-side of the USAF at the initial stage (t < 1200 s). Subsequently, when t > 2400 s, the location of the maximum scour depth shifted to the upside of the USAF at an angle of about 45° with respect to the wave propagating direction.(3)

The error is negligible and the Raaijmakers’s model is of relatively high accuracy for predicting scour around USAF under random waves when KC is calculated by KCs,p. Given that, a further revision model (Equation (31)) was proposed according to Raaijmakers’s model to predict the equilibrium scour depth around USAF under random waves and it shows good agreement with the simulating results of the present study when KCs,p < 8.(4)

Another further revision model (Equation (33)) was proposed according to the stochastic model established by Myrhaug and Rue [37] to predict the equilibrium scour depth around USAF under random waves, and the predicting results are the most favorable for n = 10 when KCrms,a < 4. However, contrary to the case of low KCrms,a, the predicting results are the most favorable for n = 2 when KCrms,a > 4 by the comparison with experimental results of Sumer and Fredsøe [16] and Corvaro et al. [21].(5)

The same formula (Equation (37)) is applicable to express the relationship of Seq/D with Eu or Fr, and it can be inferred that the higher Fr and Eu both lead to the more intensive horseshoe vortex and larger Seq.

Author Contributions

Conceptualization, H.L. (Hongjun Liu); Data curation, R.H. and P.Y.; Formal analysis, X.W. and H.L. (Hao Leng); Funding acquisition, X.W.; Writing—original draft, R.H. and P.Y.; Writing—review & editing, X.W. and H.L. (Hao Leng); The final manuscript has been approved by all the authors. All authors have read and agreed to the published version of the manuscript.

Funding

This research was funded by the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities (grant number 202061027) and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (grant number 41572247).

Institutional Review Board Statement

Not applicable.

Informed Consent Statement

Not applicable.

Data Availability Statement

The data presented in this study are available on request from the corresponding author.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

References

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Hu, R.; Liu, H.; Leng, H.; Yu, P.; Wang, X. Scour Characteristics and Equilibrium Scour Depth Prediction around Umbrella Suction Anchor Foundation under Random Waves. J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 20219, 886. https://doi.org/10.3390/jmse9080886

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Hu R, Liu H, Leng H, Yu P, Wang X. Scour Characteristics and Equilibrium Scour Depth Prediction around Umbrella Suction Anchor Foundation under Random Waves. Journal of Marine Science and Engineering. 2021; 9(8):886. https://doi.org/10.3390/jmse9080886Chicago/Turabian Style

Hu, Ruigeng, Hongjun Liu, Hao Leng, Peng Yu, and Xiuhai Wang. 2021. “Scour Characteristics and Equilibrium Scour Depth Prediction around Umbrella Suction Anchor Foundation under Random Waves” Journal of Marine Science and Engineering 9, no. 8: 886. https://doi.org/10.3390/jmse9080886

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Fig. 1 Oscillation of a free surface due to the step reduction of gravity acceleration from kzi ≈ 9.81 to kz ≈ 0

Reorientation of Cryogenic Fluids Upon Step Reduction of Gravity

단계적 중력 감소 시 극저온 유체의 방향 전환

Malte Stief∗, Jens Gerstmann∗∗, and Michael E. Dreyer∗∗∗
ZARM, Center of Applied Space Technology and Microgravity, University of Bremen, Am Fallturm, D-28359 Bremen
Experiments to observe the surface oscillation of cryogenic liquids have been performed with liquid nitrogen inside a 50 mm
diameter right circular cylinder. The surface oscillation is driven by the capillary force that becomes dominant after a sudden
reduction of the gravity acceleration acting on the liquid. The experiments show differences from the speculated behavior and
enables one to observe new features.

Introduction and motivation

최근 몇 년 동안 Bremen의 낙하탑에서 중력의 단계적 감소 시 방향 재지향 거동과 표면 진동을 조사하기 위해 수많은 실험이 수행되었습니다[1]. 이 실험의 원리는 그림 1에 나와 있습니다.

그림 1의 왼쪽에 표시된 것처럼 오른쪽 원형 원통형 용기에 테스트 액체를 레벨 h0까지 채웁니다. 처음에 액체는 정지 상태이며 중앙에서 평평한 인터페이스를 형성합니다.

초기 중력 가속도 kzi ≈ 9.81 [m/s2]와 결과적으로 높은 BOND 수(Bo = ρkziR2/σ)로 인해 실린더의 대칭축에서. 낙하탑에서 실험 캡슐의 방출에 의해 확립된 μ-중력 환경 kz ≈ 0 [m/s2]로의 갑작스러운 전환과 함께 자유 표면은 진동 운동으로 새로운 평형 구성을 찾기 시작합니다(그림의 오른쪽) 1). 이러한 움직임은 그림 1의 중앙에 스케치되어 있습니다.

표면 진동의 구동력은 접착력과 결합된 표면 장력이며, 댐핑은 액체의 점도에 의해 제어됩니다. 위치가 zw인 벽에서 접촉선의 이동은 접촉각 γ에 의해 제어됩니다. 접촉각이 작은 액체용 γ ≈ 0◦

In recent years numerous experiments have been carried out to investigate the reorientation behavior and surface oscillations upon step reduction of gravity at the drop tower in Bremen [1]. The principals of these experiments are shown in figure 1. A right circular cylindrical container is filled up to the level h0 with the test liquid, as shown on the left of figure 1. Initially the liquid is quiescent and forms a flat interface at the center, in the symmetry axis of the cylinder, due to the initial gravity acceleration kzi ≈ 9.81 [m/s2] and the resulting high BOND number (Bo = ρkziR2/σ). With the sudden transition to the µ-gravity environment kz ≈ 0 [m/s2], which is established by the release of the experiment capsular in the drop tower, the free surface is initiated to search its new equilibrium configuration (right side of figure 1) with an oscillatory motion. These movements are sketched in the center of figure 1. The driving force for the surface oscillation is the surface tension in combination with the adhesion force where the damping is controlled by the viscosity of the liquid. The movement of the contact line at the wall, with its position zw, is governed by the contact angle γ. For liquids with small contact angle γ ≈ 0◦

Fig. 1 Oscillation of a free surface due to the step reduction of gravity acceleration from kzi ≈ 9.81 to kz ≈ 0
Fig. 1 Oscillation of a free surface due to the step reduction of gravity acceleration from kzi ≈ 9.81 to kz ≈ 0
Fig. 2 Experiment picture-series showing the oscillation of the free surface at different times for a 50 mm diameter cylinder.
Fig. 2 Experiment picture-series showing the oscillation of the free surface at different times for a 50 mm diameter cylinder.

References

[1] M. Michaelis, Kapillarinduzierte Schwingungen freier Fl¨ussigkeitsoberfl¨achen, Dissertation Universit¨at Bremen, Fortschritt-Berichte
Nr. 454 (VDI Verlag, D¨usseldorf, 2003).

Figure 1: Drawing of the experimental set-up, Figure 2: Experimental tank with locations of temperature sensors

실험 및 수치 시뮬레이션에 기반한 극저온 추진제 탱크 가압 분석

Analyses of Cryogenic Propellant Tank Pressurization based upon Experiments and Numerical Simulations
Carina Ludwig? and Michael Dreyer**
*DLR – German Aerospace Center, Space Launcher Systems Analysis (SART),
Institute of Space Systems, 28359 Bremen, Germany, Carina.Ludwig@dlr.de
**ZARM – Center for Applied Space Technology and Microgravity,
University of Bremen, 28359 Bremen, Germany

Abstract

본 연구에서는 발사대 적용을 위한 극저온 추진제 탱크의 능동 가압을 분석하였다. 따라서 지상 실험, 수치 시뮬레이션 및 분석 연구를 수행하여 다음과 같은 중요한 결과를 얻었습니다.

필요한 가압 기체 질량을 최소화하기 위해 더 높은 가압 기체 온도가 유리하거나 헬륨을 가압 기체로 적용하는 것이 좋습니다.

Flow-3D를 사용한 가압 가스 질량의 수치 시뮬레이션은 실험 결과와 잘 일치함을 보여줍니다. 가압 중 지배적인 열 전달은 주입된 가압 가스에서 축방향 탱크 벽으로 나타나고 능동 가압 단계 동안 상 변화의 주된 방식은 가압 가스의 유형에 따라 다릅니다.

가압 단계가 끝나면 상당한 압력 강하가 발생합니다. 이 압력 강하의 분석적 결정을 위해 이론적 모델이 제공됩니다.

The active-pressurization of cryogenic propellant tanks for the launcher application was analyzed in this study. Therefore, ground experiments, numerical simulations and analytical studies were performed with the following important results: In order to minimize the required pressurant gas mass, a higher pressurant gas temperature is advantageous or the application of helium as pressurant gas. Numerical simulations of the pressurant gas mass using Flow-3D show good agreement to the experimental results. The dominating heat transfer during pressurization appears from the injected pressurant gas to the axial tank walls and the predominant way of phase change during the active-pressurization phase depends on the type of the pressurant gas. After the end of the pressurization phase, a significant pressure drop occurs. A theoretical model is presented for the analytical determination of this pressure drop.

Figure 1: Drawing of the experimental set-up, Figure 2: Experimental tank with locations of temperature sensors
Figure 1: Drawing of the experimental set-up, Figure 2: Experimental tank with locations of temperature sensors
Figure 3: Non-dimensional (a) tank pressure, (b) liquid temperatures, (c) vapor temperatures, (d) wall and lid temperatures during pressurization and relaxation of the N300h experiment (for details see Table 2). T14 is the pressurant
gas temperature at the diffuser. Pressurization starts at tp,0 (t
∗ = 0.06·10−4
) and ends at tp, f (t
∗ = 0.84·10−4
). Relaxation
takes place until tp,T (t
∗ = 2.79·10−4
) and ∆p is the characteristic pressure drop
Figure 3: Non-dimensional (a) tank pressure, (b) liquid temperatures, (c) vapor temperatures, (d) wall and lid temperatures during pressurization and relaxation of the N300h experiment (for details see Table 2). T14 is the pressurant gas temperature at the diffuser. Pressurization starts at tp,0 (t ∗ = 0.06·10−4 ) and ends at tp, f (t ∗ = 0.84·10−4 ). Relaxation takes place until tp,T (t ∗ = 2.79·10−4 ) and ∆p is the characteristic pressure drop
Figure 5: Nondimensional vapor mass at pressurization start (m
∗
v,0
), pressurant gas mass (m
∗
pg), condensed vapor mass
from pressurization start to pressurization end (m
∗
cond,0,f
) and condensed vapor mass from pressurization end to relaxation end (m
∗
cond, f,T
) for all GN2 (a) and the GHe (b) pressurized experiments with the relating errors.
Figure 5: Nondimensional vapor mass at pressurization start (m ∗ v,0 ), pressurant gas mass (m ∗ pg), condensed vapor mass from pressurization start to pressurization end (m ∗ cond,0,f ) and condensed vapor mass from pressurization end to relaxation end (m ∗ cond, f,T ) for all GN2 (a) and the GHe (b) pressurized experiments with the relating errors.
Figure 6: Schematical propellant tank with vapor and liquid phase, pressurant gas and condensation mass flow as well as the applied control volumes. ., Figure 7: N300h experiment: wall to fluid heat flux at pressurization end (tp, f) over the tank height.
Figure 6: Schematical propellant tank with vapor and liquid phase, pressurant gas and condensation mass flow as well as the applied control volumes. ., Figure 7: N300h experiment: wall to fluid heat flux at pressurization end (tp, f) over the tank height.

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Figure 14. Defects: (a) Unmelt defects(Scheme NO.4);(b) Pores defects(Scheme NO.1); (c); Spattering defect (Scheme NO.3); (d) Low overlapping rate defects(Scheme NO.5).

Molten pool structure, temperature and velocity
flow in selective laser melting AlCu5MnCdVA alloy

용융 풀 구조, 선택적 온도 및 속도 흐름 레이저 용융 AlCu5MnCdVA 합금

Pan Lu1 , Zhang Cheng-Lin2,6,Wang Liang3, Liu Tong4 and Liu Jiang-lin5
1 Aviation and Materials College, Anhui Technical College of Mechanical and Electrical Engineering, Wuhu Anhui 241000, People’s
Republic of China 2 School of Engineering Science, University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei Anhui 230026, People’s Republic of China 3 Anhui Top Additive Manufacturing Technology Co., Ltd., Wuhu Anhui 241300, People’s Republic of China 4 Anhui Chungu 3D Printing Institute of Intelligent Equipment and Industrial Technology, Anhui 241300, People’s Republic of China 5 School of Mechanical and Transportation Engineering, Taiyuan University of Technology, Taiyuan Shanxi 030024, People’s Republic of
China 6 Author to whom any correspondence should be addressed.
E-mail: ahjdpanlu@126.com, jiao__zg@126.com, ahjdjxx001@126.com,tongliu1988@126.com and liujianglin@tyut.edu.cn

Keywords

SLM, molten pool, AlCu5MnCdVA alloy, heat flow, velocity flow, numerical simulation

Abstract

선택적 레이저 용융(SLM)은 열 전달, 용융, 상전이, 기화 및 물질 전달을 포함하는 복잡한 동적 비평형 프로세스인 금속 적층 제조(MAM)에서 가장 유망한 기술 중 하나가 되었습니다. 용융 풀의 특성(구조, 온도 흐름 및 속도 흐름)은 SLM의 최종 성형 품질에 결정적인 영향을 미칩니다. 이 연구에서는 선택적 레이저 용융 AlCu5MnCdVA 합금의 용융 풀 구조, 온도 흐름 및 속도장을 연구하기 위해 수치 시뮬레이션과 실험을 모두 사용했습니다.

그 결과 용융풀의 구조는 다양한 형태(깊은 오목 구조, 이중 오목 구조, 평면 구조, 돌출 구조 및 이상적인 평면 구조)를 나타냈으며, 용융 풀의 크기는 약 132 μm × 107 μm × 50 μm였습니다. : 용융풀은 초기에는 여러 구동력에 의해 깊이 15μm의 깊은 오목형상이었으나, 성형 후기에는 장력구배에 의해 높이 10μm의 돌출형상이 되었다. 용융 풀 내부의 금속 흐름은 주로 레이저 충격력, 금속 액체 중력, 표면 장력 및 반동 압력에 의해 구동되었습니다.

AlCu5MnCdVA 합금의 경우, 금속 액체 응고 속도가 매우 빠르며(3.5 × 10-4 S), 가열 속도 및 냉각 속도는 각각 6.5 × 107 K S-1 및 1.6 × 106 K S-1 에 도달했습니다. 시각적 표준으로 표면 거칠기를 선택하고, 낮은 레이저 에너지 AlCu5MnCdVA 합금 최적 공정 매개변수 창을 수치 시뮬레이션으로 얻었습니다: 레이저 출력 250W, 부화 공간 0.11mm, 층 두께 0.03mm, 레이저 스캔 속도 1.5m s-1 .

또한, 실험 프린팅과 수치 시뮬레이션과 비교할 때, 용융 풀의 폭은 각각 약 205um 및 약 210um이었고, 인접한 두 용융 트랙 사이의 중첩은 모두 약 65um이었다. 결과는 수치 시뮬레이션 결과가 실험 인쇄 결과와 기본적으로 일치함을 보여 수치 시뮬레이션 모델의 정확성을 입증했습니다.

Selective Laser Melting (SLM) has become one of the most promising technologies in Metal Additive Manufacturing (MAM), which is a complex dynamic non-equilibrium process involving heat transfer, melting, phase transition, vaporization and mass transfer. The characteristics of the molten pool (structure, temperature flow and velocity flow) have a decisive influence on the final forming quality of SLM. In this study, both numerical simulation and experiments were employed to study molten pool structure, temperature flow and velocity field in Selective Laser Melting AlCu5MnCdVA alloy. The results showed the structure of molten pool showed different forms(deep-concave structure, double-concave structure, plane structure, protruding structure and ideal planar structure), and the size of the molten pool was approximately 132 μm × 107 μm × 50 μm: in the early stage, molten pool was in a state of deep-concave shape with a depth of 15 μm due to multiple driving forces, while a protruding shape with a height of 10 μm duo to tension gradient in the later stages of forming. The metal flow inside the molten pool was mainly driven by laser impact force, metal liquid gravity, surface tension and recoil pressure. For AlCu5MnCdVA alloy, metal liquid solidification speed was extremely fast(3.5 × 10−4 S), the heating rate and cooling rate reached 6.5 × 107 K S−1 and 1.6 × 106 K S−1 , respectively. Choosing surface roughness as a visual standard, low-laser energy AlCu5MnCdVA alloy optimum process parameters window was obtained by numerical simulation: laser power 250 W, hatching space 0.11 mm, layer thickness 0.03 mm, laser scanning velocity 1.5 m s−1 . In addition, compared with experimental printing and numerical simulation, the width of the molten pool was about 205 um and about 210 um, respectively, and overlapping between two adjacent molten tracks was all about 65 um. The results showed that the numerical simulation results were basically consistent with the experimental print results, which proved the correctness of the numerical simulation model.

Figure 1. AlCu5MnCdVA powder particle size distribution.
Figure 1. AlCu5MnCdVA powder particle size distribution.
Figure 2. AlCu5MnCdVA powder
Figure 2. AlCu5MnCdVA powder
Figure 3. Finite element model and calculation domains of SLM.
Figure 3. Finite element model and calculation domains of SLM.
Figure 4. SLM heat transfer process.
Figure 4. SLM heat transfer process.
Figure 14. Defects: (a) Unmelt defects(Scheme NO.4);(b) Pores defects(Scheme NO.1); (c); Spattering defect (Scheme NO.3); (d) Low
overlapping rate defects(Scheme NO.5).
Figure 17. Two-pass molten tracks overlapping for Scheme NO.2.
Figure 17. Two-pass molten tracks overlapping for Scheme NO.2.

References

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Temperature contours& velocity vectors just after spray off

NASA Perspectives on Cryo H2 Storage

Cryo H2 저장에 대한 NASA의 관점

DOE Hydrogen Storage Workshop
Marriott Crystal Gateway
Arlington, VA
February 15, 2011
David J. Chato
NASA Glenn Research Center
Michael P. Doherty
NASA Glenn Research Center

Objectives

Purposes of this Presentation
• To show the role of Cryogenics in NASA prior missions
• To show recent NASA accomplishments in cryogenic fluid management technology
• To highlight the importance of long term cryogenic storage to future NASA missions (especially Human Space flight)

What is Cryogenic Fluid Management?

The Cartoon Guide to Cryogenic Fluid Management Illustrating Key Concepts in Iconic Form

GRC Cryogenic Fluid Management Accomplishments

Baseline CFD Models Validated Against K-Site, MHTB, and S-IVB Data

Objective:
Perform model development and validation of the baseline computational fluid
dynamics (CFD) codes Flow-3D (with point source spray model) and Fluent (with
lumped-ullage model) for three self-pressurization experiments and one set of spray bar
thermodynamic vent system (TVS) experiments. Accuracy of CFD codes assessed by
comparing experimental data and CFD predictions for ullage pressure versus time.

Key Accomplishment/Deliverable/Milestone:
• Develop lumped-ullage model (non-moving zero-thickness interface) enabling
reduced simulations times compared to Flow-3D, but with limitations on accuracy and
applicability to situations with significant interface movement.
• Lumped-ullage with spray model development completed, but not tested and
validated due to loss of key researcher in June 2009. New person identified to
complete this work by end of FY10. (Updated milestone report will be issued).

Flow-3D Volume of Fluid (VOF) and Fluent lumped-ullage models
validated against 2 ground-based and 1 flight experiment for LH2 selfpressurization with relative error in ullage pressure generally within 5%,
reaching 8-12% at higher liquid fill levels, and up to 18% for the Fluent
lumped-ullage simulations of the flight test (S-IVB AS 203)
• Flow-3D point source spray model developed and validated against
MHTB LH2 spray bar pressure control 1g experiment with ullage
pressure errors up to 26% for pressure rise and 47% for pressure decay

Significance:
• Two CFD models have been developed with errors quantified for selfpressurization and pressure control of cryogenic storage tanks.
• Baseline CFD models are now available Exploration mission
applications (including in-space low gravity applications) and
design/post-analysis of current CFM experimental work. Applications to
Altair and EDS tanks have already occurred and/or are underway.

Temperature contours& velocity
vectors just after spray off
Temperature contours& velocity vectors just after spray off
Flow-3D results: MHTB LH2 1g test, 50% fill
Flow-3D results: MHTB LH2 1g test, 50% fill
Figure 5 A schematic of the water model of reactor URO 200.

Physical and Numerical Modeling of the Impeller Construction Impact on the Aluminum Degassing Process

알루미늄 탈기 공정에 미치는 임펠러 구성의 물리적 및 수치적 모델링

Kamil Kuglin,1 Michał Szucki,2 Jacek Pieprzyca,3 Simon Genthe,2 Tomasz Merder,3 and Dorota Kalisz1,*

Mikael Ersson, Academic Editor

Author information Article notes Copyright and License information Disclaimer

Associated Data

Data Availability Statement

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Abstract

This paper presents the results of tests on the suitability of designed heads (impellers) for aluminum refining. The research was carried out on a physical model of the URO-200, followed by numerical simulations in the FLOW 3D program. Four design variants of impellers were used in the study. The degree of dispersion of the gas phase in the model liquid was used as a criterion for evaluating the performance of each solution using different process parameters, i.e., gas flow rate and impeller speed. Afterward, numerical simulations in Flow 3D software were conducted for the best solution. These simulations confirmed the results obtained with the water model and verified them.

Keywords: aluminum, impeller construction, degassing process, numerical modeling, physical modeling

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1. Introduction

Constantly increasing requirements concerning metallurgical purity in terms of hydrogen content and nonmetallic inclusions make casting manufacturers use effective refining techniques. The answer to this demand is the implementation of the aluminum refining technique making use of a rotor with an original design guaranteeing efficient refining [1,2,3,4]. The main task of the impeller (rotor) is to reduce the contamination of liquid metal (primary and recycled aluminum) with hydrogen and nonmetallic inclusions. An inert gas, mainly argon or a mixture of gases, is introduced through the rotor into the liquid metal to bring both hydrogen and nonmetallic inclusions to the metal surface through the flotation process. Appropriately and uniformly distributed gas bubbles in the liquid metal guarantee achieving the assumed level of contaminant removal economically. A very important factor in deciding about the obtained degassing effect is the optimal rotor design [5,6,7,8]. Thanks to the appropriate geometry of the rotor, gas bubbles introduced into the liquid metal are split into smaller ones, and the spinning movement of the rotor distributes them throughout the volume of the liquid metal bath. In this solution impurities in the liquid metal are removed both in the volume and from the upper surface of the metal. With a well-designed impeller, the costs of refining aluminum and its alloys can be lowered thanks to the reduced inert gas and energy consumption (optimal selection of rotor rotational speed). Shorter processing time and a high degree of dehydrogenation decrease the formation of dross on the metal surface (waste). A bigger produced dross leads to bigger process losses. Consequently, this means that the choice of rotor geometry has an indirect impact on the degree to which the generated waste is reduced [9,10].

Another equally important factor is the selection of process parameters such as gas flow rate and rotor speed [11,12]. A well-designed gas injection system for liquid metal meets two key requirements; it causes rapid mixing of the liquid metal to maintain a uniform temperature throughout the volume and during the entire process, to produce a chemically homogeneous metal composition. This solution ensures effective degassing of the metal bath. Therefore, the shape of the rotor, the arrangement of the nozzles, and their number are significant design parameters that guarantee the optimum course of the refining process. It is equally important to complete the mixing of the metal bath in a relatively short time, as this considerably shortens the refining process and, consequently, reduces the process costs. Another important criterion conditioning the implementation of the developed rotor is the generation of fine diffused gas bubbles which are distributed throughout the metal volume, and whose residence time will be sufficient for the bubbles to collide and adsorb the contaminants. The process of bubble formation by the spinning rotors differs from that in the nozzles or porous molders. In the case of a spinning rotor, the shear force generated by the rotor motion splits the bubbles into smaller ones. Here, the rotational speed, mixing force, surface tension, and fluid density have a key effect on the bubble size. The velocity of the bubbles, which depends mainly on their size and shape, determines their residence time in the reactor and is, therefore, very important for the refining process, especially since gas bubbles in liquid aluminum may remain steady only below a certain size [13,14,15].

The impeller designs presented in the article were developed to improve the efficiency of the process and reduce its costs. The impellers used so far have a complicated structure and are very pricey. The success of the conducted research will allow small companies to become independent of external supplies through the possibility of making simple and effective impellers on their own. The developed structures were tested on the water model. The results of this study can be considered as pilot.

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2. Materials and Methods

Rotors were realized with the SolidWorks computer design technique and a 3D printer. The developed designs were tested on a water model. Afterward, the solution with the most advantageous refining parameters was selected and subjected to calculations with the Flow3D package. As a result, an impeller was designed for aluminum refining. Its principal lies in an even distribution of gas bubbles in the entire volume of liquid metal, with the largest possible participation of the bubble surface, without disturbing the metal surface. This procedure guarantees the removal of gaseous, as well as metallic and nonmetallic, impurities.

2.1. Rotor Designs

The developed impeller constructions, shown in Figure 1Figure 2Figure 3 and Figure 4, were printed on a 3D printer using the PLA (polylactide) material. The impeller design models differ in their shape and the number of holes through which the inert gas flows. Figure 1Figure 2 and Figure 3 show the same impeller model but with a different number of gas outlets. The arrangement of four, eight, and 12 outlet holes was adopted in the developed design. A triangle-shaped structure equipped with three gas outlet holes is presented in Figure 4.

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Figure 1

A 3D model—impeller with four holes—variant B4.

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Figure 2

A 3D model—impeller with eight holes—variant B8.

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Figure 3

A 3D model—impeller with twelve holes—variant B12.

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Figure 4

A 3D model—‘red triangle’ impeller with three holes—variant RT3.

2.2. Physical Models

Investigations were carried out on a water model of the URO 200 reactor of the barbotage refining process (see Figure 5).

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Figure 5

A schematic of the water model of reactor URO 200.

The URO 200 reactor can be classified as a cyclic reactor. The main element of the device is a rotor, which ends the impeller. The whole system is attached to a shaft via which the refining gas is supplied. Then, the shaft with the rotor is immersed in the liquid metal in the melting pot or the furnace chamber. In URO 200 reactors, the refining process lasts 600 s (10 min), the gas flow rate that can be obtained ranges from 5 to 20 dm3·min−1, and the speed at which the rotor can move is 0 to 400 rpm. The permissible quantity of liquid metal for barbotage refining is 300 kg or 700 kg [8,16,17]. The URO 200 has several design solutions which improve operation and can be adapted to the existing equipment in the foundry. These solutions include the following [8,16]:

  • URO-200XR—used for small crucible furnaces, the capacity of which does not exceed 250 kg, with no control system and no control of the refining process.
  • URO-200SA—used to service several crucible furnaces of capacity from 250 kg to 700 kg, fully automated and equipped with a mechanical rotor lift.
  • URO-200KA—used for refining processes in crucible furnaces and allows refining in a ladle. The process is fully automated, with a hydraulic rotor lift.
  • URO-200KX—a combination of the XR and KA models, designed for the ladle refining process. Additionally, refining in heated crucibles is possible. The unit is equipped with a manual hydraulic rotor lift.
  • URO-200PA—designed to cooperate with induction or crucible furnaces or intermediate chambers, the capacity of which does not exceed one ton. This unit is an integral part of the furnace. The rotor lift is equipped with a screw drive.

Studies making use of a physical model can be associated with the observation of the flow and circulation of gas bubbles. They require meeting several criteria regarding the similarity of the process and the object characteristics. The similarity conditions mainly include geometric, mechanical, chemical, thermal, and kinetic parameters. During simulation of aluminum refining with inert gas, it is necessary to maintain the geometric similarity between the model and the real object, as well as the similarity related to the flow of liquid metal and gas (hydrodynamic similarity). These quantities are characterized by the Reynolds, Weber, and Froude numbers. The Froude number is the most important parameter characterizing the process, its magnitude is the same for the physical model and the real object. Water was used as the medium in the physical modeling. The factors influencing the choice of water are its availability, relatively low cost, and kinematic viscosity at room temperature, which is very close to that of liquid aluminum.

The physical model studies focused on the flow of inert gas in the form of gas bubbles with varying degrees of dispersion, particularly with respect to some flow patterns such as flow in columns and geysers, as well as disturbance of the metal surface. The most important refining parameters are gas flow rate and rotor speed. The barbotage refining studies for the developed impeller (variants B4, B8, B12, and RT3) designs were conducted for the following process parameters:

  • Rotor speed: 200, 300, 400, and 500 rpm,
  • Ideal gas flow: 10, 20, and 30 dm3·min−1,
  • Temperature: 293 K (20 °C).

These studies were aimed at determining the most favorable variants of impellers, which were then verified using the numerical modeling methods in the Flow-3D program.

2.3. Numerical Simulations with Flow-3D Program

Testing different rotor impellers using a physical model allows for observing the phenomena taking place while refining. This is a very important step when testing new design solutions without using expensive industrial trials. Another solution is modeling by means of commercial simulation programs such as ANSYS Fluent or Flow-3D [18,19]. Unlike studies on a physical model, in a computer program, the parameters of the refining process and the object itself, including the impeller design, can be easily modified. The simulations were performed with the Flow-3D program version 12.03.02. A three-dimensional system with the same dimensions as in the physical modeling was used in the calculations. The isothermal flow of liquid–gas bubbles was analyzed. As in the physical model, three speeds were adopted in the numerical tests: 200, 300, and 500 rpm. During the initial phase of the simulations, the velocity field around the rotor generated an appropriate direction of motion for the newly produced bubbles. When the required speed was reached, the generation of randomly distributed bubbles around the rotor was started at a rate of 2000 per second. Table 1 lists the most important simulation parameters.

Table 1

Values of parameters used in the calculations.

ParameterValueUnit
Maximum number of gas particles1,000,000
Rate of particle generation20001·s−1
Specific gas constant287.058J·kg−1·K−1
Atmospheric pressure1.013 × 105Pa
Water density1000kg·m−3
Water viscosity0.001kg·m−1·s−1
Boundary condition on the wallsNo-slip
Size of computational cell0.0034m

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In the case of the CFD analysis, the numerical solutions require great care when generating the computational mesh. Therefore, computational mesh tests were performed prior to the CFD calculations. The effect of mesh density was evaluated by taking into account the velocity of water in the tested object on the measurement line A (height of 0.065 m from the bottom) in a characteristic cross-section passing through the object axis (see Figure 6). The mesh contained 3,207,600, 6,311,981, 7,889,512, 11,569,230, and 14,115,049 cells.

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Figure 6

The velocity of the water depending on the size of the computational grid.

The quality of the generated computational meshes was checked using the criterion skewness angle QEAS [18]. This criterion is described by the following relationship:

QEAS=max{βmax−βeq180−βeq,βeq−βminβeq},

(1)

where βmaxβmin are the maximal and minimal angles (in degrees) between the edges of the cell, and βeq is the angle corresponding to an ideal cell, which for cubic cells is 90°.

Normalized in the interval [0;1], the value of QEAS should not exceed 0.75, which identifies the permissible skewness angle of the generated mesh. For the computed meshes, this value was equal to 0.55–0.65.

Moreover, when generating the computational grids in the studied facility, they were compacted in the areas of the highest gradients of the calculated values, where higher turbulence is to be expected (near the impeller). The obtained results of water velocity in the studied object at constant gas flow rate are shown in Figure 6.

The analysis of the obtained water velocity distributions (see Figure 6) along the line inside the object revealed that, with the density of the grid of nodal points, the velocity changed and its changes for the test cases of 7,889,512, 11,569,230, and 14,115,049 were insignificant. Therefore, it was assumed that a grid containing not less than 7,900,000 (7,889,512) cells would not affect the result of CFD calculations.

A single-block mesh of regular cells with a size of 0.0034 m was used in the numerical calculations. The total number of cells was approximately 7,900,000 (7,889,512). This grid resolution (see Figure 7) allowed the geometry of the system to be properly represented, maintaining acceptable computation time (about 3 days on a workstation with 2× CPU and 12 computing cores).

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Figure 7

Structured equidistant mesh used in numerical calculations: (a) mesh with smoothed, surface cells (the so-called FAVOR method) used in Flow-3D; (b) visualization of the applied mesh resolution.

The calculations were conducted with an explicit scheme. The timestep was selected by the program automatically and controlled by stability and convergence. From the moment of the initial velocity field generation (start of particle generation), it was 0.0001 s.

When modeling the degassing process, three fluids are present in the system: water, gas supplied through the rotor head (impeller), and the surrounding air. Modeling such a multiphase flow is a numerically very complex issue. The necessity to overcome the liquid backpressure by the gas flowing out from the impeller leads to the formation of numerical instabilities in the volume of fluid (VOF)-based approach used by Flow-3D software. Therefore, a mixed description of the analyzed flow was used here. In this case, water was treated as a continuous medium, while, in the case of gas bubbles, the discrete phase model (DPM) model was applied. The way in which the air surrounding the system was taken into account is later described in detail.

The following additional assumptions were made in the modeling:

  • —The liquid phase was considered as an incompressible Newtonian fluid.
  • —The effect of chemical reactions during the refining process was neglected.
  • —The composition of each phase (gas and liquid) was considered homogeneous; therefore, the viscosity and surface tension were set as constants.
  • —Only full turbulence existed in the liquid, and the effect of molecular viscosity was neglected.
  • —The gas bubbles were shaped as perfect spheres.
  • —The mutual interaction between gas bubbles (particles) was neglected.

2.3.1. Modeling of Liquid Flow 

The motion of the real fluid (continuous medium) is described by the Navier–Stokes Equation [20].

dudt=−1ρ∇p+ν∇2u+13ν∇(∇⋅ u)+F,

(2)

where du/dt is the time derivative, u is the velocity vector, t is the time, and F is the term accounting for external forces including gravity (unit components denoted by XYZ).

In the simulations, the fluid flow was assumed to be incompressible, in which case the following equation is applicable:

∂u∂t+(u⋅∇)u=−1ρ∇p+ν∇2u+F.

(3)

Due to the large range of liquid velocities during flows, the turbulence formation process was included in the modeling. For this purpose, the k–ε model turbulence kinetic energy k and turbulence dissipation ε were the target parameters, as expressed by the following equations [21]:

∂(ρk)∂t+∂(ρkvi)∂xi=∂∂xj[(μ+μtσk)⋅∂k∂xi]+Gk+Gb−ρε−Ym+Sk,

(4)

∂(ρε)∂t+∂(ρεui)∂xi=∂∂xj[(μ+μtσε)⋅∂k∂xi]+C1εεk(Gk+G3εGb)+C2ερε2k+Sε,

(5)

where ρ is the gas density, σκ and σε are the Prandtl turbulence numbers, k and ε are constants of 1.0 and 1.3, and Gk and Gb are the kinetic energy of turbulence generated by the average velocity and buoyancy, respectively.

As mentioned earlier, there are two gas phases in the considered problem. In addition to the gas bubbles, which are treated here as particles, there is also air, which surrounds the system. The boundary of phase separation is in this case the free surface of the water. The shape of the free surface can change as a result of the forming velocity field in the liquid. Therefore, it is necessary to use an appropriate approach to free surface tracking. The most commonly used concept in liquid–gas flow modeling is the volume of fluid (VOF) method [22,23], and Flow-3D uses a modified version of this method called TrueVOF. It introduces the concept of the volume fraction of the liquid phase fl. This parameter can be used for classifying the cells of a discrete grid into areas filled with liquid phase (fl = 1), gaseous phase, or empty cells (fl = 0) and those through which the phase separation boundary (fl ∈ (0, 1)) passes (free surface). To determine the local variations of the liquid phase fraction, it is necessary to solve the following continuity equation:

dfldt=0.

(6)

Then, the fluid parameters in the region of coexistence of the two phases (the so-called interface) depend on the volume fraction of each phase.

ρ=flρl+(1−fl)ρg,

(7)

ν=flνl+(1−fl)νg,

(8)

where indices l and g refer to the liquid and gaseous phases, respectively.

The parameter of fluid velocity in cells containing both phases is also determined in the same way.

u=flul+(1−fl)ug.

(9)

Since the processes taking place in the surrounding air can be omitted, to speed up the calculations, a single-phase, free-surface model was used. This means that no calculations were performed in the gas cells (they were treated as empty cells). The liquid could fill them freely, and the air surrounding the system was considered by the atmospheric pressure exerted on the free surface. This approach is often used in modeling foundry and metallurgical processes [24].

2.3.2. Modeling of Gas Bubble Flow 

As stated, a particle model was used to model bubble flow. Spherical particles (gas bubbles) of a given size were randomly generated in the area marked with green in Figure 7b. In the simulations, the gas bubbles were assumed to have diameters of 0.016 and 0.02 m corresponding to the gas flow rates of 10 and 30 dm3·min−1, respectively.

Experimental studies have shown that, as a result of turbulent fluid motion, some of the bubbles may burst, leading to the formation of smaller bubbles, although merging of bubbles into larger groupings may also occur. Therefore, to be able to observe the behavior of bubbles of different sizes (diameter), the calculations generated two additional particle types with diameters twice smaller and twice larger, respectively. The proportion of each species in the system was set to 33.33% (Table 2).

Table 2

Data assumed for calculations.

NoRotor Speed (Rotational Speed)
rpm
Bubbles Diameter
m
Corresponding Gas Flow Rate
dm3·min−1
NoRotor Speed (Rotational Speed)
rpm
Bubbles Diameter
m
Corresponding Gas Flow Rate
dm3·min−1
A2000.01610D2000.0230
0.0080.01
0.0320.04
B3000.01610E3000.0230
0.0080.01
0.0320.04
C5000.01610F5000.0230
0.0080.01
0.0320.04

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The velocity of the particle results from the generated velocity field (calculated from Equation (3) in the liquid ul around it and its velocity resulting from the buoyancy force ub. The effect of particle radius r on the terminal velocity associated with buoyancy force can be determined according to Stokes’ law.

ub=29 (ρg−ρl)μlgr2,

(10)

where g is the acceleration (9.81).

The DPM model was used for modeling the two-phase (water–air) flow. In this model, the fluid (water) is treated as a continuous phase and described by the Navier–Stokes equation, while gas bubbles are particles flowing in the model fluid (discrete phase). The trajectories of each bubble in the DPM system are calculated at each timestep taking into account the mass forces acting on it. Table 3 characterizes the DPM model used in our own research [18].

Table 3

Characteristic of the DPM model.

MethodEquations
Euler–LagrangeBalance equation:
dugdt=FD(u−ug)+g(ϱg−ϱ)ϱg+F.
FD (u − up) denotes the drag forces per mass unit of a bubble, and the expression for the drag coefficient FD is of the form
FD=18μCDReϱ⋅gd2g24.
The relative Reynolds number has the form
Re≡ρdg|ug−u|μ.
On the other hand, the force resulting from the additional acceleration of the model fluid has the form
F=12dρdtρg(u−ug),
where ug is the gas bubble velocity, u is the liquid velocity, dg is the bubble diameter, and CD is the drag coefficient.

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3. Results and Discussion

3.1. Calculations of Power and Mixing Time by the Flowing Gas Bubbles

One of the most important parameters of refining with a rotor is the mixing power induced by the spinning rotor and the outflowing gas bubbles (via impeller). The mixing power of liquid metal in a ladle of height (h) by gas injection can be determined from the following relation [15]:

pgVm=ρ⋅g⋅uB,

(11)

where pg is the mixing power, Vm is the volume of liquid metal in the reactor, ρ is the density of liquid aluminum, and uB is the average speed of bubbles, given below.

uB=n⋅R⋅TAc⋅Pm⋅t,

(12)

where n is the number of gas moles, R is the gas constant (8.314), Ac is the cross-sectional area of the reactor vessel, T is the temperature of liquid aluminum in the reactor, and Pm is the pressure at the middle tank level. The pressure at the middle level of the tank is calculated by a function of the mean logarithmic difference.

Pm=(Pa+ρ⋅g⋅h)−Paln(Pa+ρ⋅g⋅h)Pa,

(13)

where Pa is the atmospheric pressure, and h is the the height of metal in the reactor.

Themelis and Goyal [25] developed a model for calculating mixing power delivered by gas injection.

pg=2Q⋅R⋅T⋅ln(1+m⋅ρ⋅g⋅hP),

(14)

where Q is the gas flow, and m is the mass of liquid metal.

Zhang [26] proposed a model taking into account the temperature difference between gas and alloy (metal).

pg=QRTgVm[ln(1+ρ⋅g⋅hPa)+(1−TTg)],

(15)

where Tg is the gas temperature at the entry point.

Data for calculating the mixing power resulting from inert gas injection into liquid aluminum are given below in Table 4. The design parameters were adopted for the model, the parameters of which are shown in Figure 5.

Table 4

Data for calculating mixing power introduced by an inert gas.

ParameterValueUnit
Height of metal column0.7m
Density of aluminum2375kg·m−3
Process duration20s
Gas temperature at the injection site940K
Cross-sectional area of ladle0.448m2
Mass of liquid aluminum546.25kg
Volume of ladle0.23M3
Temperature of liquid aluminum941.15K

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Table 5 presents the results of mixing power calculations according to the models of Themelis and Goyal and of Zhang for inert gas flows of 10, 20, and 30 dm3·min−1. The obtained calculation results significantly differed from each other. The difference was an order of magnitude, which indicates that the model is highly inaccurate without considering the temperature of the injected gas. Moreover, the calculations apply to the case when the mixing was performed only by the flowing gas bubbles, without using a rotor, which is a great simplification of the phenomenon.

Table 5

Mixing power calculated from mathematical models.

Mathematical ModelMixing Power (W·t−1)
for a Given Inert Gas Flow (dm3·min−1)
102030
Themelis and Goyal11.4923.3335.03
Zhang0.821.662.49

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The mixing time is defined as the time required to achieve 95% complete mixing of liquid metal in the ladle [27,28,29,30]. Table 6 groups together equations for the mixing time according to the models.

Table 6

Models for calculating mixing time.

AuthorsModelRemarks
Szekely [31]τ=800ε−0.4ε—W·t−1
Chiti and Paglianti [27]τ=CVQlV—volume of reactor, m3
Ql—flow intensity, m3·s−1
Iguchi and Nakamura [32]τ=1200⋅Q−0.4D1.97h−1.0υ0.47υ—kinematic viscosity, m2·s−1
D—diameter of ladle, m
h—height of metal column, m
Q—liquid flow intensity, m3·s−1

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Figure 8 and Figure 9 show the mixing time as a function of gas flow rate for various heights of the liquid column in the ladle and mixing power values.

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Figure 8

Mixing time as a function of gas flow rate for various heights of the metal column (Iguchi and Nakamura model).

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Figure 9

Mixing time as a function of mixing power (Szekly model).

3.2. Determining the Bubble Size

The mechanisms controlling bubble size and mass transfer in an alloy undergoing refining are complex. Strong mixing conditions in the reactor promote impurity mass transfer. In the case of a spinning rotor, the shear force generated by the rotor motion separates the bubbles into smaller bubbles. Rotational speed, mixing force, surface tension, and liquid density have a strong influence on the bubble size. To characterize the kinetic state of the refining process, parameters k and A were introduced. Parameters kA, and uB can be calculated using the below equations [33].

k=2D⋅uBdB⋅π−−−−−−√,

(16)

A=6Q⋅hdB⋅uB,

(17)

uB=1.02g⋅dB,−−−−−√

(18)

where D is the diffusion coefficient, and dB is the bubble diameter.

After substituting appropriate values, we get

dB=3.03×104(πD)−2/5g−1/5h4/5Q0.344N−1.48.

(19)

According to the last equation, the size of the gas bubble decreases with the increasing rotational speed (see Figure 10).

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Figure 10

Effect of rotational speed on the bubble diameter.

In a flow of given turbulence intensity, the diameter of the bubble does not exceed the maximum size dmax, which is inversely proportional to the rate of kinetic energy dissipation in a viscous flow ε. The size of the gas bubble diameter as a function of the mixing energy, also considering the Weber number and the mixing energy in the negative power, can be determined from the following equations [31,34]:

  • —Sevik and Park:

dBmax=We0.6kr⋅(σ⋅103ρ⋅10−3)0.6⋅(10⋅ε)−0.4⋅10−2.

(20)

  • —Evans:

dBmax=⎡⎣Wekr⋅σ⋅1032⋅(ρ⋅10−3)13⎤⎦35 ⋅(10⋅ε)−25⋅10−2.

(21)

The results of calculating the maximum diameter of the bubble dBmax determined from Equation (21) are given in Table 7.

Table 7

The results of calculating the maximum diameter of the bubble using Equation (21).

ModelMixing Energy
ĺ (m2·s−3)
Weber Number (Wekr)
0.591.01.2
Zhang and Taniguchi
dmax
0.10.01670.02300.026
0.50.00880.01210.013
1.00.00670.00910.010
1.50.00570.00780.009
Sevik and Park
dBmax
0.10.2650.360.41
0.50.1390.190.21
1.00.1060.140.16
1.50.0900.120.14
Evans
dBmax
0.10.2470.3400.38
0.50.1300.1780.20
1.00.0980.1350.15
1.50.0840.1150.13

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3.3. Physical Modeling

The first stage of experiments (using the URO-200 water model) included conducting experiments with impellers equipped with four, eight, and 12 gas outlets (variants B4, B8, B12). The tests were carried out for different process parameters. Selected results for these experiments are presented in Figure 11Figure 12Figure 13 and Figure 14.

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Figure 11

Impeller variant B4—gas bubbles dispersion registered for a gas flow rate of 10 dm3·min−1 and rotor speed of (a) 200, (b) 300, (c) 400, and (d) 500 rpm.

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Figure 12

Impeller variant B8—gas bubbles dispersion registered for a gas flow rate of 10 dm3·min−1 and rotor speed of (a) 200, (b) 300, (c) 400, and (d) 500 rpm.

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Figure 13

Gas bubble dispersion registered for different processing parameters (impeller variant B12).

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Figure 14

Gas bubble dispersion registered for different processing parameters (impeller variant RT3).

The analysis of the refining variants presented in Figure 11Figure 12Figure 13 and Figure 14 reveals that the proposed impellers design model is not useful for the aluminum refining process. The number of gas outlet orifices, rotational speed, and flow did not affect the refining efficiency. In all the variants shown in the figures, very poor dispersion of gas bubbles was observed in the object. The gas bubble flow had a columnar character, and so-called dead zones, i.e., areas where no inert gas bubbles are present, were visible in the analyzed object. Such dead zones were located in the bottom and side zones of the ladle, while the flow of bubbles occurred near the turning rotor. Another negative phenomenon observed was a significant agitation of the water surface due to excessive (rotational) rotor speed and gas flow (see Figure 13, cases 20; 400, 30; 300, 30; 400, and 30; 500).

Research results for a ‘red triangle’ impeller equipped with three gas supply orifices (variant RT3) are presented in Figure 14.

In this impeller design, a uniform degree of bubble dispersion in the entire volume of the modeling fluid was achieved for most cases presented (see Figure 14). In all tested variants, single bubbles were observed in the area of the water surface in the vessel. For variants 20; 200, 30; 200, and 20; 300 shown in Figure 14, the bubble dispersion results were the worst as the so-called dead zones were identified in the area near the bottom and sidewalls of the vessel, which disqualifies these work parameters for further applications. Interestingly, areas where swirls and gas bubble chains formed were identified only for the inert gas flows of 20 and 30 dm3·min−1 and 200 rpm in the analyzed model. This means that the presented model had the best performance in terms of dispersion of gas bubbles in the model liquid. Its design with sharp edges also differed from previously analyzed models, which is beneficial for gas bubble dispersion, but may interfere with its suitability in industrial conditions due to possible premature wear.

3.4. Qualitative Comparison of Research Results (CFD and Physical Model)

The analysis (physical modeling) revealed that the best mixing efficiency results were obtained with the RT3 impeller variant. Therefore, numerical calculations were carried out for the impeller model with three outlet orifices (variant RT3). The CFD results are presented in Figure 15 and Figure 16.

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Figure 15

Simulation results of the impeller RT3, for given flows and rotational speeds after a time of 1 s: simulation variants (a) A, (b) B, (c) C, (d) D, (e) E, and (f) F.

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Figure 16

Simulation results of the impeller RT3, for given flows and rotational speeds after a time of 5.4 s.: simulation variants (a) A, (b) B, (c) C, (d) D, (e) E, and (f) F.

CFD results are presented for all analyzed variants (impeller RT3) at two selected calculation timesteps of 1 and 5.40 s. They show the velocity field of the medium (water) and the dispersion of gas bubbles.

Figure 15 shows the initial refining phase after 1 s of the process. In this case, the gas bubble formation and flow were observed in an area close to contact with the rotor. Figure 16 shows the phase when the dispersion and flow of gas bubbles were advanced in the reactor area of the URO-200 model.

The quantitative evaluation of the obtained results of physical and numerical model tests was based on the comparison of the degree of gas dispersion in the model liquid. The degree of gas bubble dispersion in the volume of the model liquid and the areas of strong turbulent zones formation were evaluated during the analysis of the results of visualization and numerical simulations. These two effects sufficiently characterize the required course of the process from the physical point of view. The known scheme of the below description was adopted as a basic criterion for the evaluation of the degree of dispersion of gas bubbles in the model liquid.

  • Minimal dispersion—single bubbles ascending in the region of their formation along the ladle axis; lack of mixing in the whole bath volume.
  • Accurate dispersion—single and well-mixed bubbles ascending toward the bath mirror in the region of the ladle axis; no dispersion near the walls and in the lower part of the ladle.
  • Uniform dispersion—most desirable; very good mixing of fine bubbles with model liquid.
  • Excessive dispersion—bubbles join together to form chains; large turbulence zones; uneven flow of gas.

The numerical simulation results give a good agreement with the experiments performed with the physical model. For all studied variants (used process parameters), the single bubbles were observed in the area of water surface in the vessel. For variants presented in Figure 13 (200 rpm, gas flow 20 and dm3·min−1) and relevant examples in numerical simulation Figure 16, the worst bubble dispersion results were obtained because the dead zones were identified in the area near the bottom and sidewalls of the vessel, which disqualifies these work parameters for further use. The areas where swirls and gas bubble chains formed were identified only for the inert gas flows of 20 and 30 dm3·min−1 and 200 rpm in the analyzed model (physical model). This means that the presented impeller model had the best performance in terms of dispersion of gas bubbles in the model liquid. The worst bubble dispersion results were obtained because the dead zones were identified in the area near the bottom and side walls of the vessel, which disqualifies these work parameters for further use.

Figure 17 presents exemplary results of model tests (CFD and physical model) with marked gas bubble dispersion zones. All variants of tests were analogously compared, and this comparison allowed validating the numerical model.

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Figure 17

Compilations of model research results (CFD and physical): A—single gas bubbles formed on the surface of the modeling liquid, B—excessive formation of gas chains and swirls, C—uniform distribution of gas bubbles in the entire volume of the tank, and D—dead zones without gas bubbles, no dispersion. (a) Variant B; (b) variant F.

It should be mentioned here that, in numerical simulations, it is necessary to make certain assumptions and simplifications. The calculations assumed three particle size classes (Table 2), which represent the different gas bubbles that form due to different gas flow rates. The maximum number of particles/bubbles (Table 1) generated was assumed in advance and related to the computational capabilities of the computer. Too many particles can also make it difficult to visualize and analyze the results. The size of the particles, of course, affects their behavior during simulation, while, in the figures provided in the article, the bubbles are represented by spheres (visualization of the results) of the same size. Please note that, due to the adopted Lagrangian–Eulerian approach, the simulation did not take into account phenomena such as bubble collapse or fusion. However, the obtained results allow a comprehensive analysis of the behavior of gas bubbles in the system under consideration.

The comparative analysis of the visualization (quantitative) results obtained with the water model and CFD simulations (see Figure 17) generated a sufficient agreement from the point of view of the trends. A precise quantitative evaluation is difficult to perform because of the lack of a refraction compensating system in the water model. Furthermore, in numerical simulations, it is not possible to determine the geometry of the forming gas bubbles and their interaction with each other as opposed to the visualization in the water model. The use of both research methods is complementary. Thus, a direct comparison of images obtained by the two methods requires appropriate interpretation. However, such an assessment gives the possibility to qualitatively determine the types of the present gas bubble dispersion, thus ultimately validating the CFD results with the water model.

A summary of the visualization results for impellers RT3, i.e., analysis of the occurring gas bubble dispersion types, is presented in Table 8.

Table 8

Summary of visualization results (impeller RT3)—different types of gas bubble dispersion.

No Exp.ABCDEF
Gas flow rate, dm3·min−11030
Impeller speed, rpm200300500200300500
Type of dispersionAccurateUniformUniform/excessiveMinimalExcessiveExcessive

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Tests carried out for impeller RT3 confirmed the high efficiency of gas bubble distribution in the volume of the tested object at a low inert gas flow rate of 10 dm3·min−1. The most optimal variant was variant B (300 rpm, 10 dm3·min−1). However, the other variants A and C (gas flow rate 10 dm3·min−1) seemed to be favorable for this type of impeller and are recommended for further testing. The above process parameters will be analyzed in detail in a quantitative analysis to be performed on the basis of the obtained efficiency curves of the degassing process (oxygen removal). This analysis will give an unambiguous answer as to which process parameters are the most optimal for this type of impeller; the results are planned for publication in the next article.

It should also be noted here that the high agreement between the results of numerical calculations and physical modelling prompts a conclusion that the proposed approach to the simulation of a degassing process which consists of a single-phase flow model with a free surface and a particle flow model is appropriate. The simulation results enable us to understand how the velocity field in the fluid is formed and to analyze the distribution of gas bubbles in the system. The simulations in Flow-3D software can, therefore, be useful for both the design of the impeller geometry and the selection of process parameters.

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4. Conclusions

The results of experiments carried out on the physical model of the device for the simulation of barbotage refining of aluminum revealed that the worst results in terms of distribution and dispersion of gas bubbles in the studied object were obtained for the black impellers variants B4, B8, and B12 (multi-orifice impellers—four, eight, and 12 outlet holes, respectively).

In this case, the control of flow, speed, and number of gas exit orifices did not improve the process efficiency, and the developed design did not meet the criteria for industrial tests. In the case of the ‘red triangle’ impeller (variant RT3), uniform gas bubble dispersion was achieved throughout the volume of the modeling fluid for most of the tested variants. The worst bubble dispersion results due to the occurrence of the so-called dead zones in the area near the bottom and sidewalls of the vessel were obtained for the flow variants of 20 dm3·min−1 and 200 rpm and 30 dm3·min−1 and 200 rpm. For the analyzed model, areas where swirls and gas bubble chains were formed were found only for the inert gas flow of 20 and 30 dm3·min−1 and 200 rpm. The model impeller (variant RT3) had the best performance compared to the previously presented impellers in terms of dispersion of gas bubbles in the model liquid. Moreover, its design differed from previously presented models because of its sharp edges. This can be advantageous for gas bubble dispersion, but may negatively affect its suitability in industrial conditions due to premature wearing.

The CFD simulation results confirmed the results obtained from the experiments performed on the physical model. The numerical simulation of the operation of the ‘red triangle’ impeller model (using Flow-3D software) gave good agreement with the experiments performed on the physical model. This means that the presented model impeller, as compared to other (analyzed) designs, had the best performance in terms of gas bubble dispersion in the model liquid.

In further work, the developed numerical model is planned to be used for CFD simulations of the gas bubble distribution process taking into account physicochemical parameters of liquid aluminum based on industrial tests. Consequently, the obtained results may be implemented in production practice.

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Funding Statement

This paper was created with the financial support grants from the AGH-UST, Faculty of Foundry Engineering, Poland (16.16.170.654 and 11/990/BK_22/0083) for the Faculty of Materials Engineering, Silesian University of Technology, Poland.

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Author Contributions

Conceptualization, K.K. and D.K.; methodology, J.P. and T.M.; validation, M.S. and S.G.; formal analysis, D.K. and T.M.; investigation, J.P., K.K. and S.G.; resources, M.S., J.P. and K.K.; writing—original draft preparation, D.K. and T.M.; writing—review and editing, D.K. and T.M.; visualization, J.P., K.K. and S.G.; supervision, D.K.; funding acquisition, D.K. and T.M. All authors have read and agreed to the published version of the manuscript.

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Institutional Review Board Statement

Not applicable.

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Informed Consent Statement

Not applicable.

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Data Availability Statement

Data are contained within the article.

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Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

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Footnotes

Publisher’s Note: MDPI stays neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.

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References

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Figure 4.24 - Model with virtual valves in the extremities of the geometries to simulate the permeability of the mold promoting a more uniformed filling

Optimization of filling systems for low pressure by Flow-3D

Dissertação de Mestrado
Ciclo de Estudos Integrados Conducentes ao
Grau de Mestre em Engenharia Mecânica
Trabalho efectuado sob a orientação do
Doutor Hélder de Jesus Fernades Puga
Professor Doutor José Joaquim Carneiro Barbosa

ABSTRACT

논문의 일부로 튜터 선택 가능성과 해결해야 할 주제가 설정되는 매개변수를 염두에 두고 개발 주제 ‘Flow- 3D ®에 의한 저압 충전 시스템 최적화’가 선택되었습니다. 이를 위해서는 달성해야 할 목표와 이를 달성하기 위한 방법을 정의하는 것이 필요했습니다.

충전 시스템을 시뮬레이션하고 검증할 수 있는 광범위한 소프트웨어에도 불구하고 Flow-3D®는 시장에서 최고의 도구 중 하나로 표시되어 전체 충전 프로세스 및 행동 표현과 관련하여 탁월한 정확도로 시뮬레이션하는 능력을 입증했습니다.

이를 위해 관련 프로세스를 더 잘 이해하고 충진 시스템 시뮬레이션을 위한 탐색적 기반 역할을 하기 위해 이 도구를 탐색하는 것이 중요합니다. 지연 및 재료 낭비에 반영되는 실제적인 측면에서 충전 장치의 치수를 완벽하게 만드는 비용 및 시간 낭비. 이러한 방식으로 저압 주조 공정에서 충진 시스템을 설계하고 물리적 모델을 탐색하여 특성화하는 방법론을 검증하기 위한 것입니다.

이를 위해 다음 주요 단계를 고려하십시오.

시뮬레이션 소프트웨어 Flow 3D® 탐색;
충전 시스템 모델링;
모델의 매개변수를 탐색하여 모델링된 시스템의 시뮬레이션, 검증 및 최적화.

따라서 연구 중인 압력 곡선과 주조 분석에서 가장 관련성이 높은 정보의 최종 마이닝을 검증하기 위한 것입니다.

사용된 압력 곡선은 수집된 문헌과 이전에 수행된 실제 작업을 통해 얻었습니다. 결과를 통해 3단계 압력 곡선이 층류 충진 체계의 의도된 목적과 관련 속도가 0.5 𝑚/𝑠를 초과하지 않는다는 결론을 내릴 수 있었습니다.

충전 수준이 2인 압력 곡선은 0.5 𝑚/𝑠 이상의 속도로 영역을 채우는 더 난류 시스템을 갖습니다. 열전달 매개변수는 이전에 얻은 값이 주물에 대한 소산 거동을 확증하지 않았기 때문에 연구되었습니다.

이러한 방식으로 주조 공정에 더 부합하는 새로운 가치를 얻었습니다. 달성된 결과는 유사한 것으로 나타난 NovaFlow & Solid®에 의해 생성된 결과와 비교되어 시뮬레이션에서 설정된 매개변수를 검증했습니다. Flow 3D®는 주조 부품 시뮬레이션을 위한 강력한 도구로 입증되었습니다.

As part of the dissertation and bearing in mind the parameters in which the possibility of a choice of tutor and the subject to be addressed is established, the subject for development ’Optimization of filling systems for low pressure by Flow 3D ®’ was chosen. For this it was necessary to define the objectives to achieve and the methods to attain them. Despite the wide range of software able to simulate and validate filling systems, Flow 3D® has been shown as one of the best tools in the market, demonstrating its ability to simulate with distinctive accuracy with respect to the entire process of filling and the behavioral representation of the fluid obtained. To this end, it is important to explore this tool for a better understanding of the processes involved and to serve as an exploratory basis for the simulation of filling systems, simulation being one of the great strengths of the current industry due to the need to reduce costs and time waste, in practical terms, that lead to the perfecting of the dimensioning of filling devices, which are reflected in delays and wasted material. In this way it is intended to validate the methodology to design a filling system in lowpressure casting process, exploring their physical models and thus allowing for its characterization. For this, consider the following main phases: The exploration of the simulation software Flow 3D®; modeling of filling systems; simulation, validation and optimization of systems modeled by exploring the parameters of the models. Therefore, it is intended to validate the pressure curves under study and the eventual mining of the most relevant information in a casting analysis. The pressure curves that were used were obtained through the gathered literature and the practical work previously performed. Through the results it was possible to conclude that the pressure curve with 3 levels meets the intended purpose of a laminar filling regime and associated speeds never exceeding 0.5 𝑚/𝑠. The pressure curve with 2 filling levels has a more turbulent system, having filling areas with velocities above 0.5 𝑚/𝑠. The heat transfer parameter was studied due to the values previously obtained didn’t corroborate the behavior of dissipation regarding to the casting. In this way, new values, more in tune with the casting process, were obtained. The achieved results were compared with those generated by NovaFlow & Solid®, which were shown to be similar, validating the parameters established in the simulations. Flow 3D® was proven a powerful tool for the simulation of casting parts.

키워드

저압, Flow 3D®, 시뮬레이션, 파운드리, 압력-시간 관계,Low Pressure, Flow 3D®, Simulation, Foundry, Pressure-time relation

Figure 4.24 - Model with virtual valves in the extremities of the geometries to simulate the permeability of the mold promoting a more uniformed filling
Figure 4.24 – Model with virtual valves in the extremities of the geometries to simulate the permeability of the mold promoting a more uniformed filling
Figure 4.39 - Values of temperature contours using full energy heat transfer parameter for simula
Figure 4.39 – Values of temperature contours using full energy heat transfer parameter for simula
Figure 4.40 – Comparison between software simulations (a) Flow 3D® simulation,
(b) NovaFlow & Solid® simulation
Figure 4.40 – Comparison between software simulations (a) Flow 3D® simulation, (b) NovaFlow & Solid® simulation

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Figure 1: Mold drawings

3D Flow and Temperature Analysis of Filling a Plutonium Mold

플루토늄 주형 충전의 3D 유동 및 온도 분석

Authors: Orenstein, Nicholas P. [1]

Publication Date:2013-07-24
Research Org.: Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org.: DOE/LANL
OSTI Identifier: 1088904
Report Number(s): LA-UR-13-25537
DOE Contract Number: AC52-06NA25396
Resource Type: Technical Report
Country of Publication: United States
Language: English
Subject: Engineering(42); Materials Science(36); Radiation Chemistry, Radiochemistry, & Nuclear Chemistry(38)

Introduction

The plutonium foundry at Los Alamos National Laboratory casts products for various special nuclear applications. However, plutonium’s radioactivity, material properties, and security constraints complicate the ability to perform experimental analysis of mold behavior. The Manufacturing Engineering and Technologies (MET-2) group previously developed a graphite mold to vacuum cast small plutonium disks to be used by the Department of Homeland Security as point sources for radiation sensor testing.

A two-stage pouring basin consisting of a funnel and an angled cavity directs the liquid into a vertical runner. A stack of ten disk castings connect to the runner by horizontal gates. Volumetric flow rates were implemented to limit overflow into the funnel and minimize foundry returns. Models using Flow-3D computational fluid dynamics software are employed here to determine liquid Pu flow paths, optimal pour regimes, temperature changes, and pressure variations.

Setup

Hardcopy drawings provided necessary information to create 3D .stl models for import into Flow-3D (Figs. 1 and 2). The mesh was refined over several iterations to isolate the disk cavities, runner, angled cavity, funnel, and input pour. The final flow and mold-filling simulation utilizes a fine mesh with ~5.5 million total cells. For the temperature study, the mesh contained 1/8 as many cells to reduce computational time and set temperatures to 850 °C for the molten plutonium and 500 °C for the solid graphite mold components (Fig. 3).

Flow-3D solves mass continuity and Navier-Stokes momentum equations over the structured rectangular grid model using finite difference and finite volume numerical algorithms. The solver includes terms in the momentum equation for body and viscous accelerations and uses convective heat transfer.

Simulation settings enabled Flow-3D physics calculations for gravity at 980.665 cm/s 2 in the negative Z direction (top of mold to bottom); viscous, turbulent, incompressible flow using dynamically-computed Renormalized Group Model turbulence calculations and no-slip/partial slip wall shear, and; first order, full energy equation heat transfer.

Mesh boundaries were all set to symmetric boundary conditions except for the Zmin boundary set to outflow and the Zmax boundary set to a volume flow. Vacuum casting conditions and the high reactivity of remaining air molecules with Pu validate the assumption of an initially fluidless void.

Results

The flow follows a unique three-dimensional path. The mold fills upwards with two to three disks receiving fluid in a staggered sequence. Figures 5-9 show how the fluid fills the cavity, and Figure 7 includes the color scale for pressure levels in these four figures. The narrow gate causes a high pressure region which forces the fluid to flow down the cavity centerline.

It proceeds to splash against the far wall and then wrap around the circumference back to the gate (Figs. 5 and 6). Flow in the angled region of the pouring basin cascades over the bottom ledge and attaches to the far wall of the runner, as seen in Figure 7.

This channeling becomes less pronounced as fluid volume levels increase. Finally, two similar but non-uniform depressed regions form about the centerline. These regions fill from their perimeter and bottom until completion (Fig. 8). Such a pattern is counter, for example, to a steady scenario in which a circle of molten Pu encompassing the entire bottom surface rises as a growing cylinder.

Cavity pressure becomes uniform when the cavity is full. Pressure levels build in the rising well section of the runner, where impurities were found to settle in actual casting. Early test simulations optimized the flow as three pours so that the fluid would never overflow to the funnel, the cavities would all fill completely, and small amounts of fluid would remain as foundry returns in the angled cavity.

These rates and durations were translated to the single 2.7s pour at 100 cm 3 per second used here. Figure 9 shows anomalous pressure fluctuations which occurred as the cavities became completely filled. Multiple simulations exhibited a rapid change in pressure from positive to negative and back within the newly-full disk and surrounding, already-full disks.

The time required to completely fill each cavity is plotted in Figure 10. Results show negligible temperature change within the molten Pu during mold filling and, as seen in Figure 11, at fill completion.

Figure 1: Mold drawings
Figure 1: Mold drawings
Figure 2: Mold Assembly
Figure 2: Mold Assembly
Figure 4: Actual mold and cast Pu
Figure 4: Actual mold and cast Pu
Figure 5: Bottom cavity filling
from runner
Figure 5: Bottom cavity filling from runner
Figure 6: Pouring and filling
Figure 6: Pouring and filling
Figure 8: Edge detection of cavity fill geometry. Two similar depressed areas form
about the centerline. Top cavity shown; same pressure scale as other figures
Figure 8: Edge detection of cavity fill geometry. Two similar depressed areas form about the centerline. Top cavity shown; same pressure scale as other figures
Figure 10: Cavity fill times,from first fluid contact with pouring basin, Figure 11:Fluid temperature remains essentially constant
Figure 10: Cavity fill times,from first fluid contact with pouring basin, Figure 11:Fluid temperature remains essentially constant

Conclusions

Non-uniform cavity filling could cause crystal microstructure irregularities during solidification. However, the small temperature changes seen – due to large differences in specific heat between Pu and graphite – over a relatively short time make such problems unlikely in this case.

In the actual casting, cooling required approximately ten minutes. This large difference in time scales further reduces the chance for temperature effects in such a superheated scenario. Pouring basin emptying decreases pressure at the gate which extends fill time of the top two cavities.

The bottom cavity takes longer to fill because fluid must first enter the runner and fill the well. Fill times continue linearly until the top two cavities. The anomalous pressure fluctuations may be due to physical attempts by the system to reach equilibrium, but they are more likely due to numerical errors in the Flow3D solver.

Unsuccessful tests were performed to remove them by halving fluid viscosity. The fine mesh reduced, but did not eliminate, the extent of the fluctuations. Future work is planned to study induction and heat transfer in the full Pu furnace system, including quantifying temporal lag of the cavity void temperature to the mold wall temperature during pre-heat and comparing heat flux levels between furnace components during cool-down.

Thanks to Doug Kautz for the opportunity to work with MET-2 and for assigning an interesting unclassified project. Additional thanks to Mike Bange for CFD guidance, insight of the project’s history, and draft review.

Fig. 6 LH2 isotherms at 1020 s.

액체-수소 탱크를 위한 결합된 열역학-유체-역학 솔루션

Coupled thermodynamic-fluid-dynamic solution for a liquid-hydrogen tank

G. D. Grayson

Published Online:23 May 2012 https://doi.org/10.2514/3.26706

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Introduction

ROPELLANT 열 성층화 및 외부 교란에 대한 유체 역학적 반응은 발사체와 우주선 모두에서 중요합니다. 과거에는 결합된 솔루션을 제공할 수 있는 충분한 계산 기술이 부족하여 이러한 문제를 개별적으로 해결했습니다.1

이로 인해 모델링 기술의 불확실성을 허용하기 위해 큰 안전 계수를 가진 시스템이 과도하게 설계되었습니다. 고중력 환경과 저중력 환경 모두에서 작동하도록 설계된 미래 시스템은 기술적으로나 재정적으로 실현 가능하도록 과잉 설계 및 안전 요소가 덜 필요합니다.

이러한 유체 시스템은 열역학 및 유체 역학이 모두 중요한 환경에서 모델의 기능을 광범위하게 검증한 후에만 고충실도 수치 모델을 기반으로 할 수 있습니다. 상용 컴퓨터 코드 FLOW-3D2는 유체 역학 및 열 모델링 모두에서 가능성을 보여주었으며,1 따라서 열역학-유체-역학 엔지니어링 문제에서 결합된 질량, 운동량 및 에너지 방정식을 푸는 데 적합함을 시사합니다.

발사체의 복잡한 액체 가스 시스템에 대한 포괄적인 솔루션을 달성하기 위한 첫 번째 단계로 액체 유체 역학과 열역학을 통합하는 제안된 상단 단계 액체-수소(Lit) 탱크의 간단한 모델이 여기에 제시됩니다. FLOW-3D FLOW-3D 프로그램은 Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory에서 시작되었으며 마커 및 셀 방법에서 파생된 것입니다.3 현재 상태로 가져오기 위해 수년에 걸쳐 광범위한 코드 수정이 이루어졌습니다.2

프로그램은 다음과 같습니다. 일반 Navier-Stokes 방정식을 풀기 위해 수치 근사의 중앙 유한 차분 방법을 사용하는 3차원 유체 역학 솔버입니다. 모멘텀 및 에너지 방정식의 섹션은 특정 응용 프로그램에 따라 활성화 또는 비활성화할 수 있습니다.

코드는 1994년 9월 13일 접수를 인용하기 위해 무액체 표면, 복잡한 용기 기하학, 여러 점성 모델, 표면 장력, 다공성 매체를 통한 흐름 및 응고와 함께 압축성 또는 비압축성 유동 가정을 제공합니다. 1995년 1월 15일에 받은 개정; 1995년 2월 17일 출판 승인.

ROPELLANT thermal stratification and fluid-dynamic response to external disturbances are of concern in both launch vehicles and spacecraft. In the past these problems have been addressed separately for want of sufficient computational technology to provide for coupled solutions.1 This has resulted in overdesigned systems with large safety factors to allow for the uncertainty in modeling techniques. Future systems designed to perform in both highand low-gravity environments will require less overdesign and safety factors to be technically and financially feasible. Such fluid systems can be based on high-fidelity numerical models only after extensive validation of the models’ capabilities in environments where both the thermodynamics and the fluid dynamics are important. The commercial computer code FLOW-3D2 has shown promise in both fluid-dynamic and thermal modeling,1 thus suggesting suitability for solving the coupled mass, momentum, and energy equations in thermodynamic-fluid-dynamic engineering problems. As a first step to achieving a comprehensive solution for complex liquidgas systems in a launch vehicle, a simple model of a proposed upper-stage liquid-hydrogen (Lit) tank incorporating the liquid fluid dynamics and thermodynamics is presented here. FLOW-3D The FLOW-3D program originated at the Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory and is a derivative of the marker-and-cell method.3 Extensive code modifications have been made over the years to bring it to its present state.2 The program is a three-dimensional fluiddynamic solver that uses a central finite-difference method of numerical approximation to solve the general Navier-Stokes equations. Sections of the momentum and energy equations can be enabled or disabled depending on the particular application. The code provides compressible or incompressible flow assumptions with liquid free surfaces, complex container geometries, several viscosity models, surface tension, flow though porous media, and solidification, to cite Received Sept. 13, 1994; revision received Jan. 15, 1995; accepted for publication Feb. 17, 1995. Copyright © 1995 by the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Inc. All rights reserved. *Engineer/Scientist, Propulsion Analysis and Hydraulics, Space Transportation Division, MS 13-3, 5301 Bolsa Avenue. Member AIAA. a few of the possibilities. Further information on FLOW-3D’s capabilities and details of the numerical algorithms can be found in Ref. 2

Fig. 1 Axial-acceleration history.
Fig. 1 Axial-acceleration history.
Fig. 2 Heat flux histories.
Fig. 2 Heat flux histories.
Fig. 3 LHi isotherms at 50 s.
Fig. 3 LHi isotherms at 50 s.
Fig. 4 LH2 isotherms at 300 s
Fig. 4 LH2 isotherms at 300 s
Fig. 5 LH2 isotherms at 880 s.
Fig. 5 LH2 isotherms at 880 s.
Fig. 6 LH2 isotherms at 1020 s.
Fig. 6 LH2 isotherms at 1020 s.
Fig. 7 Tank-outlet temperature history.
Fig. 7 Tank-outlet temperature history.
Extratropical cyclone damage to the seawall in Dawlish, UK: eyewitness accounts, sea level analysis and numerical modelling

영국 Dawlish의 방파제에 대한 온대 저기압 피해: 목격자 설명, 해수면 분석 및 수치 모델링

Extratropical cyclone damage to the seawall in Dawlish, UK: eyewitness accounts, sea level analysis and numerical modelling

Natural Hazards (2022)Cite this article

Abstract

2014년 2월 영국 해협(영국)과 특히 Dawlish에 영향을 미친 온대 저기압 폭풍 사슬은 남서부 지역과 영국의 나머지 지역을 연결하는 주요 철도에 심각한 피해를 입혔습니다.

이 사건으로 라인이 두 달 동안 폐쇄되어 5천만 파운드의 피해와 12억 파운드의 경제적 손실이 발생했습니다. 이 연구에서는 폭풍의 파괴력을 해독하기 위해 목격자 계정을 수집하고 해수면 데이터를 분석하며 수치 모델링을 수행합니다.

우리의 분석에 따르면 이벤트의 재난 관리는 성공적이고 효율적이었으며 폭풍 전과 도중에 인명과 재산을 구하기 위해 즉각적인 조치를 취했습니다. 파도 부이 분석에 따르면 주기가 4–8, 8–12 및 20–25초인 복잡한 삼중 봉우리 바다 상태가 존재하는 반면, 조위계 기록에 따르면 최대 0.8m의 상당한 파도와 최대 1.5m의 파도 성분이 나타났습니다.

이벤트에서 가능한 기여 요인으로 결합된 진폭. 최대 286 KN의 상당한 임펄스 파동이 손상의 시작 원인일 가능성이 가장 높았습니다. 수직 벽의 반사는 파동 진폭의 보강 간섭을 일으켜 파고가 증가하고 최대 16.1m3/s/m(벽의 미터 너비당)의 상당한 오버탑핑을 초래했습니다.

이 정보와 우리의 공학적 판단을 통해 우리는 이 사고 동안 다중 위험 계단식 실패의 가장 가능성 있는 순서는 다음과 같다고 결론을 내립니다. 조적 파괴로 이어지는 파도 충격력, 충전물 손실 및 연속적인 조수에 따른 구조물 파괴.

The February 2014 extratropical cyclonic storm chain, which impacted the English Channel (UK) and Dawlish in particular, caused significant damage to the main railway connecting the south-west region to the rest of the UK. The incident caused the line to be closed for two months, £50 million of damage and an estimated £1.2bn of economic loss. In this study, we collate eyewitness accounts, analyse sea level data and conduct numerical modelling in order to decipher the destructive forces of the storm. Our analysis reveals that the disaster management of the event was successful and efficient with immediate actions taken to save lives and property before and during the storm. Wave buoy analysis showed that a complex triple peak sea state with periods at 4–8, 8–12 and 20–25 s was present, while tide gauge records indicated that significant surge of up to 0.8 m and wave components of up to 1.5 m amplitude combined as likely contributing factors in the event. Significant impulsive wave force of up to 286 KN was the most likely initiating cause of the damage. Reflections off the vertical wall caused constructive interference of the wave amplitudes that led to increased wave height and significant overtopping of up to 16.1 m3/s/m (per metre width of wall). With this information and our engineering judgement, we conclude that the most probable sequence of multi-hazard cascading failure during this incident was: wave impact force leading to masonry failure, loss of infill and failure of the structure following successive tides.

Introduction

The progress of climate change and increasing sea levels has started to have wide ranging effects on critical engineering infrastructure (Shakou et al. 2019). The meteorological effects of increased atmospheric instability linked to warming seas mean we may be experiencing more frequent extreme storm events and more frequent series or chains of events, as well as an increase in the force of these events, a phenomenon called storminess (Mölter et al. 2016; Feser et al. 2014). Features of more extreme weather events in extratropical latitudes (30°–60°, north and south of the equator) include increased gusting winds, more frequent storm squalls, increased prolonged precipitation and rapid changes in atmospheric pressure and more frequent and significant storm surges (Dacre and Pinto 2020). A recent example of these events impacting the UK with simultaneous significant damage to coastal infrastructure was the extratropical cyclonic storm chain of winter 2013/2014 (Masselink et al. 2016; Adams and Heidarzadeh 2021). The cluster of storms had a profound effect on both coastal and inland infrastructure, bringing widespread flooding events and large insurance claims (RMS 2014).

The extreme storms of February 2014, which had a catastrophic effect on the seawall of the south Devon stretch of the UK’s south-west mainline, caused a two-month closure of the line and significant disruption to the local and regional economy (Fig. 1b) (Network Rail 2014; Dawson et al. 2016; Adams and Heidarzadeh 2021). Restoration costs were £35 m, and economic effects to the south-west region of England were estimated up to £1.2bn (Peninsula Rail Taskforce 2016). Adams and Heidarzadeh (2021) investigated the disparate cascading failure mechanisms which played a part in the failure of the railway through Dawlish and attempted to put these in the context of the historical records of infrastructure damage on the line. Subsequent severe storms in 2016 in the region have continued to cause damage and disruption to the line in the years since 2014 (Met Office 2016). Following the events of 2014, Network Rail Footnote1 who owns the network has undertaken a resilience study. As a result, it has proposed a £400 m refurbishment of the civil engineering assets that support the railway (Fig. 1) (Network Rail 2014). The new seawall structure (Fig. 1a,c), which is constructed of pre-cast concrete sections, encases the existing Brunel seawall (named after the project lead engineer, Isambard Kingdom Brunel) and has been improved with piled reinforced concrete foundations. It is now over 2 m taller to increase the available crest freeboard and incorporates wave return features to minimise wave overtopping. The project aims to increase both the resilience of the assets to extreme weather events as well as maintain or improve amenity value of the coastline for residents and visitors.

figure 1
Fig. 1

In this work, we return to the Brunel seawall and the damage it sustained during the 2014 storms which affected the assets on the evening of the 4th and daytime of the 5th of February and eventually resulted in a prolonged closure of the line. The motivation for this research is to analyse and model the damage made to the seawall and explain the damage mechanisms in order to improve the resilience of many similar coastal structures in the UK and worldwide. The innovation of this work is the multidisciplinary approach that we take comprising a combination of analysis of eyewitness accounts (social science), sea level and wave data analysis (physical science) as well as numerical modelling and engineering judgement (engineering sciences). We investigate the contemporary wave climate and sea levels by interrogating the real-time tide gauge and wave buoys installed along the south-west coast of the English Channel. We then model a typical masonry seawall (Fig. 2), applying the computational fluid dynamics package FLOW3D-Hydro,Footnote2 to quantify the magnitude of impact forces that the seawall would have experienced leading to its failure. We triangulate this information to determine the probable sequence of failures that led to the disaster in 2014.

figure 2
Fig. 2

Data and methods

Our data comprise eyewitness accounts, sea level records from coastal tide gauges and offshore wave buoys as well as structural details of the seawall. As for methodology, we analyse eyewitness data, process and investigate sea level records through Fourier transform and conduct numerical simulations using the Flow3D-Hydro package (Flow Science 2022). Details of the data and methodology are provided in the following.

Eyewitness data

The scale of damage to the seawall and its effects led the local community to document the first-hand accounts of those most closely affected by the storms including residents, local businesses, emergency responders, politicians and engineering contractors involved in the post-storm restoration work. These records now form a permanent exhibition in the local museum in DawlishFootnote3, and some of these accounts have been transcribed into a DVD account of the disaster (Dawlish Museum 2015). We have gathered data from the Dawlish Museum, national and international news reports, social media tweets and videos. Table 1 provides a summary of the eyewitness accounts. Overall, 26 entries have been collected around the time of the incident. Our analysis of the eyewitness data is provided in the third column of Table 1 and is expanded in Sect. 3.Table 1 Eyewitness accounts of damage to the Dawlish railway due to the February 2014 storm and our interpretations

Full size table

Sea level data and wave environment

Our sea level data are a collection of three tide gauge stations (Newlyn, Devonport and Swanage Pier—Fig. 5a) owned and operated by the UK National Tide and Sea Level FacilityFootnote4 for the Environment Agency and four offshore wave buoys (Dawlish, West Bay, Torbay and Chesil Beach—Fig. 6a). The tide gauge sites are all fitted with POL-EKO (www.pol-eko.com.pl) data loggers. Newlyn has a Munro float gauge with one full tide and one mid-tide pneumatic bubbler system. Devonport has a three-channel data pneumatic bubbler system, and Swanage Pier consists of a pneumatic gauge. Each has a sampling interval of 15 min, except for Swanage Pier which has a sampling interval of 10 min. The tide gauges are located within the port areas, whereas the offshore wave buoys are situated approximately 2—3.3 km from the coast at water depths of 10–15 m. The wave buoys are all Datawell Wavemaker Mk III unitsFootnote5 and come with sampling interval of 0.78 s. The buoys have a maximum saturation amplitude of 20.5 m for recording the incident waves which implies that every wave larger than this threshold will be recorded at 20.5 m. The data are provided by the British Oceanographic Data CentreFootnote6 for tide gauges and the Channel Coastal ObservatoryFootnote7 for wave buoys.

Sea level analysis

The sea level data underwent quality control to remove outliers and spikes as well as gaps in data (e.g. Heidarzadeh et al. 2022; Heidarzadeh and Satake 2015). We processed the time series of the sea level data using the Matlab signal processing tool (MathWorks 2018). For calculations of the tidal signals, we applied the tidal package TIDALFIT (Grinsted 2008), which is based on fitting tidal harmonics to the observed sea level data. To calculate the surge signals, we applied a 30-min moving average filter to the de-tided data in order to remove all wind, swell and infra-gravity waves from the time series. Based on the surge analysis and the variations of the surge component before the time period of the incident, an error margin of approximately ± 10 cm is identified for our surge analysis. Spectral analysis of the wave buoy data is performed using the fast Fourier transform (FFT) of Matlab package (Mathworks 2018).

Numerical modelling

Numerical modelling of wave-structure interaction is conducted using the computational fluid dynamics package Flow3D-Hydro version 1.1 (Flow Science 2022). Flow3D-Hydro solves the transient Navier–Stokes equations of conservation of mass and momentum using a finite difference method and on Eulerian and Lagrangian frameworks (Flow Science 2022). The aforementioned governing equations are:

∇.u=0∇.u=0

(1)

∂u∂t+u.∇u=−∇Pρ+υ∇2u+g∂u∂t+u.∇u=−∇Pρ+υ∇2u+g

(2)

where uu is the velocity vector, PP is the pressure, ρρ is the water density, υυ is the kinematic viscosity and gg is the gravitational acceleration. A Fractional Area/Volume Obstacle Representation (FAVOR) is adapted in Flow3D-Hydro, which applies solid boundaries within the Eulerian grid and calculates the fraction of areas and volume in partially blocked volume in order to compute flows on corresponding boundaries (Hirt and Nichols 1981). We validated the numerical modelling through comparing the results with Sainflou’s analytical equation for the design of vertical seawalls (Sainflou 1928; Ackhurst 2020), which is as follows:

pd=ρgHcoshk(d+z)coshkdcosσtpd=ρgHcoshk(d+z)coshkdcosσt

(3)

where pdpd is the hydrodynamic pressure, ρρ is the water density, gg is the gravitational acceleration, HH is the wave height, dd is the water depth, kk is the wavenumber, zz is the difference in still water level and mean water level, σσ is the angular frequency and tt is the time. The Sainflou’s equation (Eq. 3) is used to calculate the dynamic pressure from wave action, which is combined with static pressure on the seawall.

Using Flow3D-Hydro, a model of the Dawlish seawall was made with a computational domain which is 250.0 m in length, 15.0 m in height and 0.375 m in width (Fig. 3a). The computational domain was discretised using a single uniform grid with a mesh size of 0.125 m. The model has a wave boundary at the left side of the domain (x-min), an outflow boundary on the right side (x-max), a symmetry boundary at the bottom (z-min) and a wall boundary at the top (z-max). A wall boundary implies that water or waves are unable to pass through the boundary, whereas a symmetry boundary means that the two edges of the boundary are identical and therefore there is no flow through it. The water is considered incompressible in our model. For volume of fluid advection for the wave boundary (i.e. the left-side boundary) in our simulations, we utilised the “Split Lagrangian Method”, which guarantees the best accuracy (Flow Science, 2022).

figure 3
Fig. 3

The stability of the numerical scheme is controlled and maintained through checking the Courant number (CC) as given in the following:

C=VΔtΔxC=VΔtΔx

(4)

where VV is the velocity of the flow, ΔtΔt is the time step and ΔxΔx is the spatial step (i.e. grid size). For stability and convergence of the numerical simulations, the Courant number must be sufficiently below one (Courant et al. 1928). This is maintained by a careful adjustment of the ΔxΔx and ΔtΔt selections. Flow3D-Hydro applies a dynamic Courant number, meaning the program adjusts the value of time step (ΔtΔt) during the simulations to achieve a balance between accuracy of results and speed of simulation. In our simulation, the time step was in the range ΔtΔt = 0.0051—0.051 s.

In order to achieve the most efficient mesh resolution, we varied cell size for five values of ΔxΔx = 0.1 m, 0.125 m, 0.15 m, 0.175 m and 0.20 m. Simulations were performed for all mesh sizes, and the results were compared in terms of convergence, stability and speed of simulation (Fig. 3). A linear wave with an amplitude of 1.5 m and a period of 6 s was used for these optimisation simulations. We considered wave time histories at two gauges A and B and recorded the waves from simulations using different mesh sizes (Fig. 3). Although the results are close (Fig. 3), some limited deviations are observed for larger mesh sizes of 0.20 m and 0.175 m. We therefore selected mesh size of 0.125 m as the optimum, giving an extra safety margin as a conservative solution.

The pressure from the incident waves on the vertical wall is validated in our model by comparing them with the analytical equation of Sainflou (1928), Eq. (3), which is one of the most common set of equations for design of coastal structures (Fig. 4). The model was tested by running a linear wave of period 6 s and wave amplitude of 1.5 m against the wall, with a still water level of 4.5 m. It can be seen that the model results are very close to those from analytical equations of Sainflou (1928), indicating that our numerical model is accurately modelling the wave-structure interaction (Fig. 4).

figure 4
Fig. 4

Eyewitness account analysis

Contemporary reporting of the 4th and 5th February 2014 storms by the main national news outlets in the UK highlights the extreme nature of the events and the significant damage and disruption they were likely to have on the communities of the south-west of England. In interviews, this was reinforced by Network Rail engineers who, even at this early stage, were forecasting remedial engineering works to last for at least 6 weeks. One week later, following subsequent storms the cascading nature of the events was obvious. Multiple breaches of the seawall had taken place with up to 35 separate landslide events and significant damage to parapet walls along the coastal route also were reported. Residents of the area reported extreme effects of the storm, one likening it to an earthquake and reporting water ingress through doors windows and even through vertical chimneys (Table 1). This suggests extreme wave overtopping volumes and large wave impact forces. One resident described the structural effects as: “the house was jumping up and down on its footings”.

Disaster management plans were quickly and effectively put into action by the local council, police service and National Rail. A major incident was declared, and decisions regarding evacuation of the residents under threat were taken around 2100 h on the night of 4th February when reports of initial damage to the seawall were received (Table 1). Local hotels were asked to provide short-term refuge to residents while local leisure facilities were prepared to accept residents later that evening. Initial repair work to the railway line was hampered by successive high spring tides and storms in the following days although significant progress was still made when weather conditions permitted (Table 1).

Sea level observations and spectral analysis

The results of surge and wave analyses are presented in Figs. 5 and 6. A surge height of up to 0.8 m was recorded in the examined tide gauge stations (Fig. 5b-d). Two main episodes of high surge heights are identified: the first surge started on 3rd February 2014 at 03:00 (UTC) and lasted until 4th of February 2014 at 00:00; the second event occurred in the period 4th February 2014 15:00 to 5th February 2014 at 17:00 (Fig. 5b-d). These data imply surge durations of 21 h and 26 h for the first and the second events, respectively. Based on the surge data in Fig. 5, we note that the storm event of early February 2014 and the associated surges was a relatively powerful one, which impacted at least 230 km of the south coast of England, from Land’s End to Weymouth, with large surge heights.

figure 5
Fig. 5
figure 6
Fig. 6

Based on wave buoy records, the maximum recorded amplitudes are at least 20.5 m in Dawlish and West Bay, 1.9 m in Tor Bay and 4.9 m in Chesil (Fig. 6a-b). The buoys at Tor Bay and Chesil recorded dual peak period bands of 4–8 and 8–12 s, whereas at Dawlish and West Bay registered triple peak period bands at 4–8, 8–12 and 20–25 s (Fig. 6c, d). It is important to note that the long-period waves at 20–25 s occur with short durations (approximately 2 min) while the waves at the other two bands of 4–8 and 8–12 s appear to be present at all times during the storm event.

The wave component at the period band of 4–8 s can be most likely attributed to normal coastal waves while the one at 8–12 s, which is longer, is most likely the swell component of the storm. Regarding the third component of the waves with long period of 20 -25 s, which occurs with short durations of 2 min, there are two hypotheses; it is either the result of a local (port and harbour) and regional (the Lyme Bay) oscillations (eg. Rabinovich 1997; Heidarzadeh and Satake 2014; Wang et al. 1992), or due to an abnormally long swell. To test the first hypothesis, we consider various water bodies such as Lyme Bay (approximate dimensions of 70 km × 20 km with an average water depth of 30 m; Fig. 6), several local bays (approximate dimensions of 3.6 km × 0.6 km with an average water depth of 6 m) and harbours (approximate dimensions of 0.5 km × 0.5 km with an average water depth of 4 m). Their water depths are based on the online Marine navigation website.Footnote8 According to Rabinovich (2010), the oscillation modes of a semi-enclosed rectangle basin are given by the following equation:

Tmn=2gd−−√[(m2L)2+(nW)2]−1/2Tmn=2gd[(m2L)2+(nW)2]−1/2

(5)

where TmnTmn is the oscillation period, gg is the gravitational acceleration, dd is the water depth, LL is the length of the basin, WW is the width of the basin, m=1,2,3,…m=1,2,3,… and n=0,1,2,3,…n=0,1,2,3,…; mm and nn are the counters of the different modes. Applying Eq. (5) to the aforementioned water bodies results in oscillation modes of at least 5 min, which is far longer than the observed period of 20–25 s. Therefore, we rule out the first hypothesis and infer that the long period of 20–25 s is most likely a long swell wave coming from distant sources. As discussed by Rabinovich (1997) and Wang et al. (2022), comparison between sea level spectra before and after the incident is a useful method to distinguish the spectrum of the weather event. A visual inspection of Fig. 6 reveals that the forcing at the period band of 20–25 s is non-existent before the incident.

Numerical simulations of wave loading and overtopping

Based on the results of sea level data analyses in the previous section (Fig. 6), we use a dual peak wave spectrum with peak periods of 10.0 s and 25.0 s for numerical simulations because such a wave would be comprised of the most energetic signals of the storm. For variations of water depth (2.0–4.0 m), coastal wave amplitude (0.5–1.5 m) (Fig. 7) and storm surge height (0.5–0.8 m) (Fig. 5), we developed 20 scenarios (Scn) which we used in numerical simulations (Table 2). Data during the incident indicated that water depth was up to the crest level of the seawall (approximately 4 m water depth); therefore, we varied water depth from 2 to 4 m in our simulation scenarios. Regarding wave amplitudes, we referred to the variations at a nearby tide gauge station (West Bay) which showed wave amplitude up to 1.2 m (Fig. 7). Therefore, wave amplitude was varied from 0.5 m to 1.5 m by considering a factor a safety of 25% for the maximum wave amplitude. As for the storm surge component, time series of storm surges calculated at three coastal stations adjacent to Dawlish showed that it was in the range of 0.5 m to 0.8 m (Fig. 5). These 20 scenarios would help to study uncertainties associated with wave amplitudes and pressures. Figure 8 shows snapshots of wave propagation and impacts on the seawall at different times.

figure 7
Fig. 7

Table 2 The 20 scenarios considered for numerical simulations in this study

Full size table

figure 8
Fig. 8

Results of wave amplitude simulations

Large wave amplitudes can induce significant wave forcing on the structure and cause overtopping of the seawall, which could eventually cascade to other hazards such as erosion of the backfill and scour (Adams and Heidarzadeh, 2021). The first 10 scenarios of our modelling efforts are for the same incident wave amplitudes of 0.5 m, which occur at different water depths (2.0–4.0 m) and storm surge heights (0.5–0.8 m) (Table 2 and Fig. 9). This is because we aim at studying the impacts of effective water depth (deff—the sum of mean sea level and surge height) on the time histories of wave amplitudes as the storm evolves. As seen in Fig. 9a, by decreasing effective water depth, wave amplitude increases.