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Comparing Commercial and Transport CFD Models for Secondary Sedimentation

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Two types of computational fluid dynamic (CFD) models of activated sludge sedimentation were compared: transport models based on estimated or measured zone settling velocities versus multi-phase models based on theoretical derivation of phase slip velocity from estimated particle size. Suspended solids and fluid velocity profiles predicted by two-dimensional models of both rectangular and circular sedimentation tanks were compared to measured solids and velocity profiles for each type. Results indicate that the transport modeling is much better grounded in empirical research and should be preferred for future modeling. Commercial CFD models typically provide only multi-phase models as standard features; however, they can be used to implement transport modeling through user-defined functions. This approach appears to be the most promising one for future research.
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Keywords: CFD; activated sludge; multi-phase modeling; particle size; sedimentation; settling velocity; slip velocity; transport modeling

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2009-01-01

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