Solidification and Melting of a fuel in a tank CFD Simulation
The gasoline does not have a specific solidification and melting point. But it has a specific temperature range for melting and solidification.
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Helical Heat Exchanger in Fuel Tank
One of the disadvantages of frozen gasoline fuel is when the temperature drops during cold seasons or in cold places. When the gasoline temperature drops, sediments and adhesives are removed first, then heavy hydrocarbon molecules begin to freeze and continue to mummify as temperatures continue to decrease. To prevent freezing of gasoline, it is necessary to raise the temperature of the gasoline in the fuel storage tanks. One way to increase the temperature of the gasoline fuel in the fuel tank is to use pipes carrying the hot fluid flow. The use of helical tubes in situations where space constraints, are due to greater heat transfer in a given space is of particular interest.
Gasoil is not a pure substance and consists of several hydrocarbons and additives such as ethanol, hexane, heptane and so on. Since most of the gasoline constituents have a unique chemical structure called isomers, the solidification and melting point of each of these materials is different.
The present issue concerns the simulation of a gasoline fuel tank carrying a single-way reciprocating spiral tube passing through the tank. This inner tube carries a flow of water at a temperature higher than the temperature of the gasoline to increase the fuel temperature by creating heat transfer between the diesel and the water and thus prevent freezing inside the tank. Therefore, the present model uses a solidification and melting module for the simulation.
The Assumption for Solidification and Melting CFD Simulation
Problem-solving is based on a pressure-based perspective.
The simulation is transient.
We take the effect of Earth’s gravity on the model into account.
Geometry & Mesh
We designed the 3-D geometry of the model using Design Modeler software. The model consists of two main parts, including a fuel tank and a spiral inner tube for hot water flow. To mesh the present model, we have used ANSYS Meshing software and unstructured mesh. The inner tube uses a finer grid.
CFD Simulation Steps
Here are some summaries of the problem definition and problem-solving steps:
|Standard wall function||Near wall tratment|
|Solidification/Melting model||Solidification & Melting|
|100000||Mushy zone parameter|
|Mass-flow inlet||Inlet type|
|0.194 kg.s-1||mass-flow rate – water|
|353 K||temperature – water|
|Pressure outlet||Outlet type|
|0 Pa||gauge pressure|
|0 (isolated)||heat flux|
|Second order upwind||pressure||Spatial discretization|
|First order upwind||momentum|
|First order upwind||energy|
|First order upwind||turbulent kinetic energy|
|First order upwind||turbulent dissipation rate|
|253 K||Initial temperature|
Solidification & Melting Module
There are various ways to define the phase change process in Fluent software. To define the phase change from gas to liquid or liquid to gas, we use multi-phase models and the mass transfer process between two phases. To define the phase change from gas to solid, we use a discrete phase model; and finally, we use the Solidification & Melting model to define the phase change from liquid to solid and vice versa.
|251||253||Solidus temperature (K)|
|252||279||Liquidus temperature (K)|
|0||10000||Pure solvent melting heat (j.kg-1)|
All files, including Geometry, Mesh, Case & Data, are available in Simulation File. By the way, Training File presents how to solve the problem and extract all desired results.