Multiple Size Group Modeling of Polydispersed Bubbly Flow in the Mold: An Analysis of Turbulence and Interfacial Force Models

Research paper by Zhongqiu Liu, Fengsheng Qi, Baokuan Li, Maofa Jiang

Indexed on: 11 Dec '14Published on: 11 Dec '14Published in: Metallurgical and Materials Transactions B


An inhomogeneous Multiple Size Group (MUSIG) model based on the Eulerian–Eulerian approach has been developed to describe the polydispersed bubbly flow inside the continuous-casting mold. A laboratory scale mold has been simulated using four different turbulence closure models (modified k − ɛ, RNG k − ɛ, k − ω, and SST) with the purpose of critically comparing their predictions of bubble Sauter mean diameter distribution with previous experimental data. Furthermore, the influences of all the interfacial momentum transfer terms including drag force, lift force, virtual mass force, wall lubrication force, and turbulent dispersion force are investigated. The breakup and coalescence effects of the bubbles are modeled according to the bubble breakup by the impact of turbulent eddies while for bubble coalescence by the random collisions driven by turbulence and wake entrainment. It has been found that the modified k − ɛ model shows better agreement than other models in predicting the bubble Sauter mean diameter profiles. Further, simulations have also been performed to understand the sensitivity of different interfacial forces. The appropriate drag force coefficient, lift force coefficient, virtual mass force coefficient, and turbulent dispersion force coefficient are chosen in accordance with measurements of water model experiments. However, the wall lubrication force does not have much effect on the current polydispersed bubbly flow system. Finally, the MUSIG model is then used to estimate the argon bubble diameter in the molten steel of the mold. The argon bubble Sauter mean diameter generated in molten steel is predicted to be larger than air bubbles in water for the similar conditions.