Application of rapid prototyping and computational fluid dynamics in the development of water flow regulating valves
Authors: Ramanath, H.; Chua, C.
Source: The International Journal of Advanced Manufacturing Technology, Volume 30, Numbers 9-10, October 2006 , pp. 828-835(8)
Abstract:Water flow regulating valves are widely used in instant water heaters to vary the rate of water flow. The water flow regulation from the valve has to be linear so that the temperature at the outlet is uniform. The shapes of valve trim affect the flow rate and have to be confirmed before releasing the designs for manufacture. In this project, the flow rate regulating characteristics were improved for a flow regulating valve with the application of rapid prototyping (RP) and computational fluid dynamics (CFD). In the development of flow regulating valves, precise, functional prototypes were required. Design concepts of three valve trim designs were evaluated applying different RP techniques and CFD analysis. Prototypes from different RP systems were used as functional models. Over the product development cycle, RP and CFD analysis stages played an important role particularly in the design selection stage. Finally, comparisons of RP samples from various RP processes and the results of CFD analysis were made on the flow rate and flow regulation. Based on these comparisons, the best design was chosen for manufacture of the valves.
Document Type: Research article
Publication date: 2006-10-01