Investigation of Particulate Flow in a Channel by Application of CFD, DEM and LDA/PDA

M. Azimian, M. Lichti, H.-J. Bart*
Chair of Separation Science and Technology, University of Kaiserslautern, D-67663 Kaiserslautern, German.

© 2014 Azimian et al.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Chair of Separation Science and Technology, University of Kaiserslautern, D-67663 Kaiserslautern, Germany; Tel: +49 (0)631 205-2414; Fax: +49 (0)631 205-2119; E-mail:


Hydroabrasion in particulate flows plays an important role in various industrial and natural processes. To predict the influence of it in a pipeline, channel or a fitting, it is essential to characterize the effects in a simple standardized geometry. An example to this is a pipe channel with a cylindrical obstacle adjusted inside the channel perpendicular to the flow direction. Results of flow field are generated by using the non-invasive Laser/Phase Doppler Anemometry (LDA/PDA) measurement technique. The velocity profiles of single phase and particulate flow from computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and discrete element method (DEM) simulations were validated by the LDA experimental data. The simulations were performed on the basis of Euler-Lagrange technique for both CFD and DEM. The measurements show that a Karman vortex field forms behind the obstacle and particles move inside this field with an average negative velocity of up to 25% of the fully developed velocity field. A comparison of CFD and DEM results with experimental data showed that in Karman velocity field, the CFD results fit better to the LDA measurements. In the fully developed flow region and also above and under the vortex field behind the obstacle, the DEM results match better with the LDA data.

Keywords: CFD, cylindrical channel, DEM, hydroabrasion,, LDA/PDA.