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BACHELOR OF CHEMICAL ENGINEERING FINAL YEAR PROJECT TITLE:

COMPUTATIONAL FLUID DYNAMICS [CFD]


SIMULATION OF A ROTATING DISK
MEMBRANE MODULE

SOURAV MONDAL

CLASS ROLL NUMBER – 000610301061

DEPARTMENT OF CHEMICAL ENGINEERING


JADAVPUR UNIVERSITY
KOLKATA – 32

UNDER THE GUIDANCE OF

DR. CHIRANJIB BHATTACHARJEE


PREOFESSOR
CHEMICAL ENGINEERING DEPARTMENT
JADAVPUR UNIVERSITY
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1. Introduction

Nowadays membrane based processes are the main area of interests growing among the researchers.
Especially in the field of water treatment, membrane applications are the most coveted technologies that are
rarely to be replaced in near future. Cross-flow and dead end processes are the two modes of membrane
applications in generic and extensively applied in different industrial applications. Mainly cross-flow
filtration is an effective separation technology that finds application in a wide range of areas including water
treatment, clean environment technologies, and recovery of worthy components from the waste stream [1].
Main limitations associated with any of the membrane applications are the continuous reduction in its
throughput due to gradual accumulation of solutes on the surface and thereby initiation of the concentration
polarization effect. To alleviate this problem various high shear devices have been used so far. Among
different high shear application cross-flow membrane filtration, frequently termed low shear tangential
filtration is used to clean fluids that are difficult to filter and to separate fine matter such as cells, proteins,
enzymes and viruses [2]. Rotating disk membrane module (RDMM) is another type of high sheared device
which was used previously by many researchers, mainly in the separation of protein [3, 4] from milk or in
any biological separation [5]. Bhattacharjee and Bhattacharya [6] performed ultrafiltration (UF) of Kraft
black liquor (KBL) using RDMM. In case of RDMM mainly the rotation of membrane creates a high
turbulence on membrane surface which ultimately reduces the retention period of solutes on the surface and
thus too some extent alleviate the chances of reversible as well as irreversible fouling of the membrane. To
understand the efficacy of the process, study on hydrodynamics and thereby development of some model
equations describing the actual scenario within the system is inevitable.

Transport modelling in membrane systems has been so far the most complicated element of research
work that were being carried out by several researchers hitherto. Sarkar and Bhattacharjee [5] have already
established an analytical solution for describing the actual hydrodynamics within RDMM based on the back
transport flux mechanism. The main complexity arises during the formulation of these models are the
occurring of different uncertainties associated with the membrane separation processes. Especially in case of
RDMM the inner hydrodynamics is so complicated to understand analytically and thereby limits the
development of mathematical model. Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) could be an alternative tool to
overcome this limitation. CFD is a theoretical way to investigate and predict the performance of the process
without creating much complexity from the design aspect for complicated geometrical modules [7]. Torras
et al. [8] made a similar study on RDMM, using CFD simulation of RDMM. In this model they had
compared the CFD simulated shear stress with that one calculated from the analytical correlation and found
a good agreement between the two results. A CFD simulation for a two-dimensional transport in a
membrane module was carried out by Pellerin et al. [9]. They found that the pressure contours for the
laminar and turbulent models are quite similar near the control axis of the module but they are different near

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the wall region. In membrane separation process the main areas of concern are the concentration polarization
and the flow distribution within the membrane module. The former is responsible for continuous decline in
the permeate flux and the later controls the maximum utilization of the membrane area. In order to reduce
the concentration polarization, present work employs a membrane and a propeller rotating in opposite to
each other within the module. Thus creating high turbulence adverse effect on the permeation through
membrane could be reduced, but at the same this may affect the non-uniform flow distribution within the
module after creating vortex. CFD simulation helps to understand the effect of rotation and provide an
effective way-out to design the module in such a fashion so that both concentration polarization and non-
uniformity in the flow could be reduced.

The true insight of the actual phenomena including the behavioural aspects of the governing
principles was not available in the literature so far. In the present work, RDMM was employed with BSA
solution as a feed to the system. The operational parameters include transmembrane pressure (TMP),
concentration of the solution, rotation of the membrane and propeller. The use of CFD in the analysis of
concentration boundary layer during the steady and unsteady time has been attempted greatly for the purpose
of theoretical interest. The complete simulation to predict the concentration distribution within the module
was conducted with precise level of accuracy using Ansys FLUENT® 6.3.26.

2. Theory

Ultrafiltration (UF) is one of the mostly adopted technologies in membrane separation field,
especially in the separation of protein. Equation 1 is the typical Darcy equation, relating the permeate flux
with the TMP and resistances occurred on the membrane surface.

∆P − ∆π
J= (1)
µ ( Rm + Rc )

However turbulent rotational flow developed within RDMM promotes the appearances of eddies having a
wide range of length scale, which could be a cumbersome task to handle without applying CFD. The most
attractive part to solve the problem is to represent turbulent flow by the mean values of flow properties and
the statistical properties of their fluctuations. Introducing the time-averaged properties for the flow (mean
velocities, mean pressures and mean stresses) to the time dependent Navier–Stokes equations, is led to time-
average Navier–Stokes equations as follows [10]:

Continuity Equation:

∂ρ
+ div ( ρU ) =
0 (2)
∂t

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Momentum Equation:

∂ ( ρu )
+ div ( ρ uU ) =−
∂P 
 ∂ ρ u' 2
+ div ( µ∇u ) + −
( ) (

∂ ρ u' v'

) (
∂ ρ u' w' )  + S (3)
∂t ∂x  ∂x ∂y ∂z  Mx

 

∂ ( ρv)
+ div ( ρ vU ) =−
∂P 
+ div ( µ∇v ) + −
(
 ∂ ρ u' v'

) ( ) (
∂ ρ v' 2

∂ ρ v' w' )  + S (4)
∂t ∂y  ∂x ∂y ∂z  My

 

∂ ( ρ w)
+ div ( ρ wU ) =−
∂P
 ∂ ρ u' w'

+ div ( µ∇w ) + − −
( ) (
∂ ρ v' w'

) (
∂ ρ w' 2 )  + S (5)
∂t ∂z  ∂x ∂y ∂z  Mz

 

where,

 ∂u ∂u 
− ρ ui' u'j =
τ ij =
µT  i + j  (6)
 ∂x 
 j ∂xi 

Here to solve the flow domain within RDMM Renormalization Group (RNG) [11] k-ε model was used
which performs better than the normal k-ε model in case of rotational flow [12] by eliminating the small
scale motion from the turbulence model equation, expressing their effects in terms of larger scale motion and
a modified viscosity. The model provides the following equations for k and ε [13]:

µeff= µ + µT (7)

k2
µT = ρ Cµ (8)
ε

∂ ( ρk ) ∂ ( ρ kui ) ∂  µeff ∂k   ∂ui ∂u j  ∂ui


+ =   + µT  +  − ρε (9)
∂t ∂xi ∂xi  σ k ∂xi   ∂x j ∂xi  ∂x j

∂ ( ρε ) ∂ ( ρε ui ) ∂  µeff ∂ε  ε  ∂ui ∂u j  ∂ui ε2 ε2


+ =   + C1ε µT  +  − C2 ε ρ − αρ (10)
∂t ∂xi ∂xi  σ ε ∂xi  k  ∂u j ∂ui  ∂u j k k

where,

1− η  ∂u ∂u j 
η0 k
α = Cµη 3
, η = E , E 2 = 2 Eij Eij and
= Eij 0.5  i +  (11)
1 + βη ε  ∂x
 j ∂xi 
3

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3. Experimental setup:

The module, made of SS316, was manufactured by Gurpreet Engineering Works (Kanpur, India) as
per the specified design. The module (Figure 1) was equipped with two motors with speed-controllers to
provide rotation of the stirrer (not used in this study) and membrane housing. A digital tachometer was used
to measure the rotational speed of the membrane. The set-up was equipped with an arrangement for
recycling the permeate to the feed cell to run it in continuous mode with constant feed composition. The later
mode was not investigated in this study. The module was also equipped with an outside water-jacket,
through which provision for water circulation was available. An adequate mechanical sealing mechanism
was provided to prevent leakage from the rotating membrane assembly up to a pressure of 1 MPa. An air
compressor was used to provide compressed air for pressurization of the cell. An intermediate air reservoir
fitted with on-off controller based on pressure sensor was provided which maintains the pressure within
reservoir between 1–1.2 MPa. A differential pressure regulator was used to set the pressure at the desired
level within the module. The complete schematic diagram of the rotating disk module set-up is given in Fig
2. The PES membranes (flat disk of 0.076 m diameter) of 30 kg/kmol molecular weight cut-off (MWCO)
were imported from Millipore (Bedford, USA) through its Indian counterpart (Millipore India). The flat-
sheet membrane operable in a pH range of 1–14 has an actual diameter of 0.076 m, whereas the effective
diameter was 0.056 m.

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4. Methodology:

Experiments were carried out with 500 mg/l of Bovine-Albumin-Serum (BSA) solution, batch wise for
different combinations of feed concentration (C b ), membrane speed (ω m ), stirrer speed and trans-membrane
pressure (TMP) (∆P) in RDMM. After each experiment, the membrane was thoroughly washed for 1200 s
under running water, then soaked in washing solution, as mentioned in section 2.3, for 3600 – 5400 s and
then again thoroughly washed for 1200 s. In each case, the water flux regained by about 98% of its original
value, suggesting the cause of flux decline to be either osmotic pressure limited or due to a reversible fouling
layer.

4.1 The grid generation of the rotating disc membrane module experimental module in GAMBIT.

4.1.1 The propeller design

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4.1.2 The experimental setup

4.1.3 The grid generation

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The meshing above generated in GAMBIT is exported as a *.msh file.

4.2 The steps in analysis in FLUENT are as follows

4.2.1 File  Read  Case

Read the mesh file (*.msh) from the specified folder. Internally, FLUENT stores the computational grid in
meters, the SI unit of length. When grid information is read into the solver, it is assumed that the grid was
generated in units of meters. So if the read mesh file is in other unit (say cm) using scale button we can
adjust the dimensions in m unit. So scale button does not change the unit from meter to any other units. It
just converts the other dimensions into meter by multiplying it with proper scale factor. But if we want to do
our work in other units instead of meter we have to click on “Change Length Units”. So the subsequent unit
in Fluent will be only the other unit.

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In the next step we have to check the grid. During grid check negative volume should not come.

Grid Check

Domain Extents:

x-coordinate: min (m) = -5.600000e-002, max (m) = 5.600000e-002

y-coordinate: min (m) = -5.599999e-002, max (m) = 5.599999e-002

z-coordinate: min (m) = 0.000000e+000, max (m) = 8.000000e-002

Volume statistics:

minimum volume (m3): 3.487422e-011

maximum volume (m3): 2.234592e-008

total volume (m3): 7.866323e-004

Face area statistics:

minimum face area (m2): 1.315645e-007

maximum face area (m2): 1.650526e-005

Checking number of nodes per cell.

Checking number of faces per cell.

Checking thread pointers.

Checking number of cells per face.

Checking face cells.

Checking bridge faces.

Checking right-handed cells.

Checking face handedness.

Checking face node order.

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Checking element type consistency.

Checking boundary types:

Checking face pairs.

Checking periodic boundaries.

Checking node count.

Checking nosolve cell count.

Checking nosolve face count.

Checking face children.

Checking cell children.

Checking storage.

Done.

4.2.2 Define  Models  Solver

Now we have to select the Solver for the subsequent calculation.. Solver is basically used to define how the
hydrodynamic parameters are going to be set during the solution of the problem (Eg. N-S Equation, Energy
equation etc.). In the present study we have coded the solver as per the following screenshot.

In both methods the velocity field is obtained from the momentum equations. In the Density-Based Approach, the
continuity equation is used to obtain the density field while the pressure field is determined from the equation of
state.

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On the other hand, in the Pressure-Based Approach, the pressure field is extracted by solving a pressure or
pressure correction equation which is obtained by manipulating continuity and momentum equations. In both the
cases the Finite-Volume approach is taken.

In case of Pressure-Based Approach for the incompressible flow the velocity components are solved for Navier-
Stokes equation using staggered grid technique. Along with the N-S equation the following pressure correction was
used.

∂P  ∂u ∂v 
+ asound  +  = 0 (12)
∂t  ∂x ∂y 

where a sound is the speed of sound in this pseudo continuity equation.

The absolute velocity formulation is preferred in applications where the flow in most of the domain is not rotating
(e.g., a fan in a large room). The relative velocity formulation is appropriate when most of the fluid in the domain is
rotating, as in the case of a large impeller in a mixing tank. In the present study we are simulating Rotating disk
membrane module where most of the fluid domain is rotating. So Relative was opted in the solver.

Here the discretization is mainly Temporal i.e. time based. For the pressure based solver the scheme is Implicit.
Following methods are showing the implicit temporal discretization.

1st order Implicit:

∂φ φ n +1 − φ n
= = F (φ n +1 ) (13)
∂t ∆t

2nd order Implicit:

∂φ 3φ n +1 − 4φ n + φ n −1
= = F (φ n +1 ) (14)
∂t 2∆t

where, n+1 is at the time step t+∆t, n-1 is at the time step t-∆t. Equation (2) and (3) use the following iterative
scheme.

n +1
1. Take initial guess for φold .

( )
2. Evaluate Fold φold .
n +1

( )
n +1
φnew using Fold φold and φ n .
n +1
3. Evaluate

n +1 n +1
4. Check for convergence φnew and φold .

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n +1 n +1
5. If convergence criterion was met iteration will be stopped, otherwise go to step 2 after assigning φold = φnew .

For Non-Iterative Time-Advancement Scheme each equation was solved using the temporal implicit method for
each equation (Pseudo continuity equation, N-S equation, k-equation, ε-equation. Once the entire convergence
criterion was met we will move to next time step.

In the Gradient Option we have used Green-Gauss Node Based. Here the property value at a face of a cell was
evaluated using the weighted average of the node values on that face. The nodal values using this scheme are
evaluated from surrounding cell-centered values on arbitrary unstructured meshes by solving a constrained
minimization problem, preserving a second-order spatial accuracy.

The node-based averaging scheme is known to be more accurate than the default cell-based scheme for unstructured
meshes, most notably for triangular and tetrahedral meshes.

Following diagram and equation explain the process.

φ1

φ5
φ4 φ2

φ2 + φ3
φF 2 =
2

φ3

N Nodes
1
φFace =
N Nodes
∑φ
n =1
Node (15)

For Porous Formulation Superficial Velocity will be retained for the entire simulation. It is mainly valid for
porous medium.

4.2.3 Viscous Model

In the viscous model we have chosen two equations (one for kinetic energy [k] and the other one for dissipation
rate [ε]) k-ε mod el. As ou r system is highly strained flo w with swirl we have chosen RNG k-ε model which was
derived from instantaneous N-S equation using ‘Renormalization Group’ (RNG) method. It has an additional term of
strain in the ε eq u ation and also it accou nts for the swirling flo w. So it is far su p erior to stan d ard k-ε model. In

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realizable k-ε model the only problem is the chances of having multiple reference frame (both rotating and stationary)
on which realizable gives poor performance.

Here the flow is swirl dominated flow. So in fluent we have checked the Swirl Dominated Flow. By default we have
Swirl Factor = 0.07. For highly swirled flow we have to set slightly higher value for this factor. Presently we are
working with the default value. As we have the stationary zones within the system so in some of the zones consist of
low value of Reynold’s Number. To account that we have to check the Differential Viscosity Model (Because by
default Fluent uses high Reynold’s Number). We have chosen here Enhanced Wall Treatment with checking
Pressure Gradient Effects.

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4.2.4 Define  Materials

4.2.5 Operating pressure

Pabsolute – Poperating = Pgauge

Here as far as concerned with the normal flow pressure we know that operating pressure given in equation 5
resembles atmospheric pressure. By default it was set for atmospheric pressure i.e. 101325 Pa.

Keep the Reference Pressure Location values to (0, 0, 0). As our system is not affected by the Buoyancy
so we don’t need to activate the Gravity.

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4.2.6 Setting Boundary Conditions:

/define/boundary-conditions> list-zones

id name type material kind

---- ------------------------- ------------------ -------------------- ----

2 bsa_solution mixture bsa and water cell

3 cell_body wall aluminum face

4 propeller_blade wall aluminum face

5 pressure_top pressure-inlet face

6 membrane wall aluminum face

8 default-interior interior face

 BC for bsa solution (defined in Continuum in GAMBIT as Fluid):

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To define the axis, set the Rotation-Axis Direction and Rotation-Axis Origin. This axis is independent of
the axis of rotation used by any adjacent wall zones or any other cell zones. For 3D problems, the axis of
rotation is the vector from the Rotation-Axis Origin in the direction of the vector given by your Rotation-
Axis Direction inputs. In our study the origin of the axis is (0, 0, 0) and as the fluid motion is in the
anticlockwise direction so we have set the direction (0, 0, -1) (as the rotation was followed by Right hand
thumb rule). As our system is having multiple rotating reference frame so we are using here as sliding mesh
concept activating Moving Mesh scheme.

 BC for cell_body (defined in Boundary in GAMBIT as Wall):

The species mass fraction is to be specified at the inlet which is considered to be the pressure top.

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 BC for propeller_blade (defined in Boundary in GAMBIT as Wall):

For one experimental run propeller was fixed, so we have made it stationary in the definition of boundary
condition for the propeller blade.

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 BC for membrane (defined in Boundary in GAMBIT as Wall):

For membrane we have used Moving Wall and Rotational motion. If the cell zone adjacent to the wall is
moving (e.g., if you are using a moving reference frame or a sliding mesh), you can choose to specify
velocities relative to the zone motion by enabling the Relative to Adjacent Cell Zone option. If you choose
to specify relative velocities, a velocity of zero means that the wall is stationary in the relative frame, and
therefore moving at the speed of the adjacent cell zone in the absolute frame. If you choose to specify
absolute velocities (by enabling the Absolute option), a velocity of zero means that the wall is stationary in
the absolute frame, and therefore moving at the speed of the adjacent cell zone--but in the opposite direction
in the relative reference frame. Here we have assumed that the membrane wall is fixed with respect to the
rotating reference frame and having the same rotational speed of the bsa_solution (Adjacent Cell Zone).

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 BC for pressure_top (defined in Boundary in GAMBIT as Wall):

Gauge Total Pressure is the static operating pressure with respect to the operating pressure set at
Operating Conditions panel. In case of rotating reference frame static pressure is calculated on the basis
of relative velocity if the velocity formulation will be given as Relative in the Solver panel. Now the
total pressure value is given by the following equation,

1 2
=
Ptot Pstat + ρv (16)
2

and Ptot = P absolute – Poperating (17)

In our case it is (294300 – 101325 = 192975 Pa).

The total pressure and flow direction at a pressure inlet must be specified in the absolute frame if the
absolute velocity formulation is used. For calculations using relative velocities, the total pressure and
flow direction must be specified with respect to the rotating frame. For problems involving multiple
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zones (e.g., multiple reference frames or sliding meshes), the coordinate system is defined by the rotation
axis specified in the Fluid (or Solid) panel for the fluid (or solid) zone that is adjacent to the inlet.

For the Turbulence we have adopted the rotational Reynolds Number,

N m Dm2 ρ
Re = (18)
µ

Turbulent Intensity was calculated using the following equation,

I = 0.16 ( Re )
−1
8
(19)

Turbulent length scale is calculated using the following equation,

l = 0.07 L (20)

Turbulent K.E. is calculated as follows,

3
k= ( N m Dm I )
2
(21)
2

Turbulent dissipation rate is calculated according to the following equation,

k 1.5
ε = 0.157 (22)
l

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4.2.7 Solve  Controls  Solution

The Pressure-Implicit with Splitting of Operators (PISO) pressure-velocity coupling scheme with neighbor
correction is highly recommended for all transient flow calculations, especially when you want to use a large
time step. When you use PISO neighbor correction, under-relaxation factors of 1.0 or near 1.0 are
recommended for all equations. If you use just the PISO skewness correction for highly-distorted meshes
(without neighbor correction), set the under-relaxation factors for momentum and pressure so that they sum
to 1 (e.g., 0.3 for pressure and 0.7 for momentum). If you use both PISO methods, follow the under-
relaxation recommendations for PISO neighbor correction, above.

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4.2.8 Solve  Monitors  Residual

4.2.9 Solve  Initialize  Initialize

Select pressure_top in the Compute From. Automatically it will take the initial values.

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4.2.10 Solve  Iterate

We have taken the time step size 5 seconds for 2500 s. Therefore Number of time steps = (2500/5).

Click on Iterate.

Solution Strategies for a Single Rotating Reference Frame

The difficulties associated with solving flows in rotating reference frames are similar to those discussed in Section 9.5.5. The primary issue you
must confront is the high degree of coupling between the momentum equations when the influence of the rotational terms is large. A high degree
of rotation introduces a large radial pressure gradient which drives the flow in the axial and radial directions, thereby setting up a distribution
of the swirl or rotation in the field. This coupling may lead to instabilities in the solution process, and hence require special solution techniques
to obtain a converged solution. Some techniques that may be beneficial include the following:

• (Pressure-based solver only) Consider switching the frame in which velocities are solved by changing the velocity formulation setting in
the Solver panel. (See Section 10.7.1 for details.)

• (Pressure-based segregated solver only) Use the PRESTO! scheme (enabled in the Solution Controls panel), which is well-suited for the
steep pressure gradients involved in rotating flows.

• Ensure that the mesh is sufficiently refined to resolve large gradients in pressure and swirl velocity.

• (Pressure-based solver only) Reduce the under-relaxation factors for the velocities, perhaps to 0.3-0.5 or lower, if necessary.

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• Begin the calculations using a low rotational speed, increasing the rotational speed gradually in order to reach the final desired
operating condition (see below).

Gradual Increase of the Rotational Speed to Improve Solution Stability

• Because the rotation of the reference frame and the rotation defined via boundary conditions can lead to large complex forces in the flow,
your FLUENT calculations may be less stable as the speed of rotation (and hence the magnitude of these forces) increases. One of the most
effective controls you can exert on the solution is to start with a low rotational speed and then slowly increase the rotation up to the desired
level. The procedure you use to accomplish this is as follows:

• 1. Set up the problem using a low rotational speed in your inputs for boundary conditions and for the angular velocity of the reference
frame. The rotational speed in this first attempt might be selected as 10% of the actual operating condition.

• 2. Solve the problem at these conditions.

• 3. Save this initial solution data.

• 4. Modify your inputs (i.e., boundary conditions and angular velocity of the reference frame). Increase the speed of rotation, perhaps
doubling it.

• 5. Restart or continue the calculation using the solution data saved in Step 3 as the initial guess for the new calculation. Save the new
data.

• 6. Continue to increment the rotational speed, following Steps 4 and 5, until you reach the desired operating condition.
The Cylindrical coordinate system uses the axial, radial, and tangential components based on the following coordinate systems:

• For problems involving a single cell zone, the coordinate system is defined by the rotation axis and origin specified in the Fluid panel.

• For problems involving multiple zones (e.g., multiple reference frames or sliding meshes), the coordinate system is defined by the rotation
axis specified in the Fluid (or Solid) panel for the fluid (or solid) zone that is adjacent to the inlet.

Under Non-Iterative Solver Controls, there are several parameters that control the sub-iterations for the individual equations.

The sub-iterations for an equation stop when the total number of sub-iterations exceeds the value specified for Max. Corrections, regardless of
whether or not the convergence criteria (described below) are met.

The sub-iterations for an equation end when the ratio of the residuals at the current sub-iteration and the first sub-iteration is less than the value
specified in the Correction Tolerance field. You can monitor the details of the sub-iteration convergence by looking at the AMG solver
performance (i.e., setting the Verbosity field in the Multigrid Controls panel to 1). Be sure to pay attention to the residuals for the current sub-
iteration (i.e., the residual for the 0-th AMG cycle at the current sub-iteration) and the initial residual of the time step (i.e., the residual for the 0-
th AMG cycle of the first sub-iteration). The ratio of these two residuals is what is controlled by the Correction Tolerance field. These two
residuals are also the residuals plotted when using the Residual Monitor panel and reported in the FLUENT console at the end of a time step.
Note that the residuals reported at the end of a time step can be scaled or unscaled, depending on the settings in the Residual Monitor panel.
The residuals reported when monitoring the AMG solver performance are always unscaled.

For each interim sub-iteration, the AMG cycles continue until the usual AMG termination criteria (0.1 by default, and set in the Multigrid
Controls panel) are met. However, for the last sub-iteration (i.e., either when the maximum number of sub-iterations are reached or when the
correction tolerance is satisfied), the AMG cycles continue until the ratio of the residual at the current cycle to the initial residual (the residual
for the 0-th AMG cycle of the first sub-iteration of the time step) drops below the value specified for Residual Tolerance. You may want to adjust
the Residual Tolerance, depending on the time step selected. The default Residual Tolerance should be well suited for moderate time steps (i.e.,
for cell CFL numbers of 1 to 10). Note that you can display the cell CFL numbers for unsteady problems by selecting Cell Courant Number in
the Velocity... category of all postprocessing panels. For very small time steps (cell CFL << 1), the diagonal dominance of the system is very
high and the convergence should be driven further by reducing the Residual Tolerance value. For larger time steps (cell CFL >> 1), it may be
possible that the residual tolerance cannot be reached due to round-off errors, and unless the Residual Tolerance value is increased, AMG
cycles can be wasted. Again, this can be monitored by monitoring the AMG solver performance.
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The Relaxation Factor field defines the explicit relaxation of variables between sub-iterations. The relaxation factors can be used to prevent the
solution from diverging. They should be left at their default values of 1, unless divergence is detected. If the solution diverges, you should first try
to stabilize the solution by lowering the relaxation factors for pressure to 0.7- 0.8, and by reducing the time step.

The following is a list of models that are compatible with the non-iterative solver:

• Inviscid flow (excluding ideal gas)

• Laminar flow

• All models of turbulence (including LES and DES)

• Heat transfer

• Non-reacting species transport

• General compressible flows (most subsonic and some transonic applications)

• VOF multiphase model (most applications)

• Phase change (solidification and melting)

The following is a list of models that are compatible with the non-iterative solver, but may result in some instabilities and inaccuracies for
certain flow conditions:

• MDM

• Non-Newtonian fluids

• General compressible flows (aerospace supersonic applications)

• Floating operating pressure

• Reacting species and any type of combustion including PDF

The following is a list of models that are not compatible with the non-iterative solver:

• Eulerian multiphase (all non-VOF models)

• Radiation models

• DPM, spark, and crevice models

• UDS transport

• Porous jump

The PRESTO! pressure interpolation scheme, when compared to using the iterative time-advancement, is less stable when using the
non-iterative time-advancement solver. As a consequence, smaller time steps may be required.

As mentioned above, the default control settings are optimally designed to obtain a second-order solution. In order to save CPU time, in
cases where transient accuracy is not a main concern (i.e., first-order integration in time and space), or when NITA is used to converge
toward a steady state solution, you may want to set the Max. Corrections value to 1 in the Solution Controls panel for all transport
equations except pressure.

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An user defined function has been incorporated to imply the positive aggregative effect of concentration
boundary layer profile inside the rotating disc membrane module setup.

#include "udf.h"

DEFINE_ADJUST(BSAFlux, d)

int i,id;

real flux, Cbulk = 1, k = 7.85*pow(10,-6);

real conc_solids, rho;

face_t f;

cell_t c;

Thread *t;

thread_loop_f(t,d)

id = THREAD_ID(t);

if (CURRENT_TIME > CURRENT_TIMESTEP)

begin_c_loop(c,t)

if(id == 8)

rho = ((C_R(F_C0(f,t),THREAD_T0(t))+C_R(F_C1(f,t),THREAD_T1(t))) / 2.0);

conc_solids = rho*(C_YI(F_C0(f,t),THREAD_T0(t),i)+C_YI(F_C1(f,t),THREAD_T1(t),i));

flux = k*log(conc_solids/Cbulk);

end_c_loop(c,t)

printf("id = %d:Current Time = %g:density = %g:Flux = %g:conc_solids=%g",id,CURRENT_TIME,rho,flux,conc_solids);

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5. Results

The distribution of static pressure over the membrane surface and inside the RDMM

The dynamic pressure distribution inside the module is

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The pathlines of velocity magnitude inside the RDMM over the membrane surface

The contours of radial velocity inside the RDMM is

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The contours of tangential velocity inside the RDMM is portrayed as

The contours of vorticity magnitude over the membrane surface,

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The contours of helicity inside the RDMM is displayed as

The distribution of local Reynolds inside the module is

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The degree of turbulence is shown by the contours of turbulent kinetic energy (k) (m2/s2)

The contours of turbulent dissipation rate (ε) (m2/s3)

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The contours of turbulent Reynolds number is shown below

The contours of turbulent viscosity is illustrated below,

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The contours of density distribution inside the RDMM (almost constant)

The mass fraction of BSA inside the RDMM

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The plot of mass fraction of BSA with the cartesian co – ordinate position

The effective diffusivity of BSA inside the RDMM is,

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The wall shear stress across the membrane surface and inside the setup (excluding the propeller blade, since
it has very high and almost constant magnitude)

The local strain rate (s-1) distribution in the different zones inside the RDMM

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∂P ∂P ∂P
The plots of , and with respect to position is displayed as
∂x ∂y ∂z

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Discussions and Conclusion

In the present work an attempt was made to solve Navier-Stoke's equation within a rotating domain. The
most critical part of this study was to incorporate membrane characteristics with the normal hydrodynamics
within the volume. Deposition on membrane or in other words fouling could be the most critical part that has
to be accounted with the normal CFD application. For that UDF was introduced with the normal finite
element analysis (FEA) to account the deposition on the surface. In the present work we have neglected the
adsorption part or the pore plugging phenomena that could be occurred. Results show that almost the
prediction of concentration on membrane surface was done with 70-75% accuracy. Main advantages with
the CFD modelling are that change in the design parameters for the system in order to have an optimum
model, which can reduce the normal drawbacks with the membrane separation process. Therefore changing
the parameters and solving the domain using FEA to converge to an optimum design could be considered as
a future scope of the work.

Acknowledgement

I am very much grateful to my guide Dr. Chiranjib Bhattacharjee without whose support the successful
completion of this project would only have been a distant dream. I also would like express thanks and
cordial gratitude to Mr. Dwaipayan Sen whose precious suggestion and help has been an invaluable asset to
this project. I also thank for the computer lab facility of our department in providing me technical support.

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References

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