Numerical simulation of a centrifugal slurry pump

The research article 'Numerical simulation of a centrifugal slurry pump handling solid-liquid mixture: Effect of solids on flow field and performance' has been published in Elsevier journal Advanced Powder Technology


The effect of solids on a centrifugal slurry pump performance is a major concern to the design of slurry transportation system. In the present study, the multiphase modeling of centrifugal slurry pump is performed using two models, Mixture and Eulerian-Eulerian multiphase. Sliding mesh approach is employed for unsteady simulation of the pump. The accuracy of the simulations is ascertained by comparing the performance characteristics of the pump obtained numerically and experimentally. Experimental results are obtained by measurements in a pilot plant test rig with three different mean size sand particulate slurries. The Eulerian-Eulerian multiphase model predicted the effect of the solids on pump performance close to the experimental results as compared to Mixture model. The obtained accuracy with Eulerian-Eulerian model for predicting the effect of solids on head and efficiency is around ±2% and ±3%, respectively.

The predicted results using Eulerian-Eulerian model confirm that the head and efficiency of the pump decrease with the increase in particle size and concentration. The particles of high specific gravity show less reduction in head and efficiency of the pump. Further, the effect of variation in particle size and concentration on the flow field in the impeller and casing has also been analyzed at best efficiency point operation. Non-homogeneous suspension of particles inside the blade channels and casing passages is examined. The particulate concentration is observed higher near the impeller back shroud, pressure side of the blades, and non-suction side of the casing as compared to other locations.

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