Mixing of Carbon Dioxide and Ethanol (VOF) CFD Simulation, ANSYS Fluent

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The present problem simulates the mixing of two substances including carbon dioxide and ethanol in a rectangular tank applying VOF model.

This ANSYS Fluent project includes CFD simulation files and a training movie.

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Project Description

The present problem simulates the mixing of two substances including carbon dioxide and ethanol in a rectangular tank. The VOF multiphase model has been used to simulate the present model. The constituents of this process include carbon dioxide with a molecular weight of 44.00995 kg.kmol-1 and ethanol with a molecular weight of 28.966 kg.kmol-1. The input flow enters the tank from the lower part with a temperature of 300 K. The inlet flow pressure is variable and time dependent. For this purpose, the pressure inlet boundary condition at the input boundary is used, which has a UDF in the form 8000000 + 66666.666 * t. This simulation process was performed in 180 s with a time step of 0.5 s.

Geometry & Mesh

The present model is drawn in two dimensions using Design Modeler software. The present model consists of a vertical rectangular tank for mixing materials with dimensions of 0.06 m * 0.3 m, which has an inlet section at the bottom with a width of 0.002 m. The following figure shows a view of the geometry.


The meshing of the model is done using ANSYS Meshing software and the mesh type is structured. The element number is 73788. The following figure shows a view of the mesh in zoomed mode.


CFD Simulation

To simulate the present model, several assumptions are considered:

  • We perform a pressure-based solver.
  • The simulation is unsteady. Because the model examines the changes in the volume fraction of existing phases over time.
  • The gravity effect on the fluid is equal to -9.81 m.s-2 along the Y-axis.

A summary of the defining steps of the problem and its solution is given in the following table:

Viscous Model k-epsilon
k-epsilon model standard
near-wall treatment standard wall function
Multi phase Model Volume of Fluid
number of Eulerian phases 2 (CO2 & ethanol)
formulation Implicit
type of interface modeling sharp
Energy on
Boundary conditions
Inlet Pressure Inlet
gauge total pressure UDF
total temperature 300 K
Walls Wall
wall motion stationary wall
heat flux 0 W.m-2
Solution Methods
Pressure-velocity coupling   SIMPLE
Spatial discretization pressure PRESTO
density second order upwind
momentum second order upwind
volume fraction compressive
turbulent kinetic energy first order upwind
turbulent dissipation rate first order upwind
energy second order upwind
Initialization method   Standard
gauge pressure 0 pascal
x-velocity , y-velocity 0 m.s-1
temperature 300 K

Mixing Results

At the end of the solution process, two-dimensional contours of temperature, pressure, velocity, and volume fraction for each of the ethanol and carbon dioxide phases are obtained. These contours are obtained at the last second of the simulation process interval.

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.


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