Physical phenomena in multiphase flow

When simulating a multiphase flow, some important physical phenomena seem to be:

  • Buoyancy
  • Drag between phases and momentum interactions
  • Interaction of mass between phases
  • Surface tension
  • The interaction of particles in dispersed phases
  • Breaking and interconnecting dispersed phases
  • The effects of turbulence
  • Interface modeling

Some phenomena may be important only in some applications.



Gravity is present in all flows, but when there is no density variation in the domain (like incompressible liquids with constant density), the force of gravity is equal to the force in the opposite direction due to the change in pressure from the hydrostatic head to. If we consider the equation of conservation of momentum.


In liquid-gas and solid-gas flows, the phase density can vary by a factor of 1000. Liquid-liquid and solid-liquid flows have a smaller difference in the phase density but the buoyancy force is still important. For many multiphase flows, the effects of buoyancy force must be considered.


Buoyancy modeling in ANSYS

In order to avoid the simultaneous occurrence of two large terms that opposing each other in momentum equations which may cause rounding errors, buoyancy reference density is introduced, according to which the modified pressure field is obtained.

When the buoyancy force is considered in a problem, the reference density and gravity vector must be determined. For many multiphase problems, the reference density is, in fact, the density of one of the phases.


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