Development of a Flow Dependent Chemical Reaction Model using CFD
Abstract: In many technical applications chemical reactions are used. One of these is a so called decolorization, in which an ion exchange resin is used to remove a dye from water. To apply this decolorization technique a Rotating Bed Reactor, or RBR for short, can be used. It is filled with the ion exchange resin and spun inside the water. Whilst spinning, the reactor percolates the water, letting it interact with the ion exchange resin and thus removing the dye. This project aims to use Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) as a tool to create a model for the decolorization process when a RBR is used. The goal is to achieve a reaction model for the process that can be applied to various RBR models, i.e. scaled, to aid for example product development and research. A decolorization process in which methylene blue is removed from deionized water using a SpinChem S2 RBR inside a V2 vessel, using a NRW 1160 ion exchange resin, is investigated. Experiments are conducted where the concentration of methylene blue in deionized water is measured during the decolorization process using a transmittance probe. From the experimental results a linear regression model is fitted to achieve a model for the reaction's rate constant, determining its reaction rate, depending on the fluid velocity inside the RBR and the temperature of the fluid. CFD is used to find the flow field for different rotational speeds of the RBR inside the vessel. Using the steady-state flow field species transport simulations are done using the created reaction model. This is done to compare numerical simulations to experimental results. The results show that the created reaction model can predict the time taken to absorb the methylene blue onto the ion exchange resin. Deviations from the exact decay rate of methylene blue concentration is seen, and are concluded to come from conversion of global reaction rate in the vessel to local reaction rate inside the RBR. The reaction model has not been tested explicitly on other types of RBR, thus nothing can be said about its performance. However, care has been taken to not include any RBR geometry dependent parameters in the model.
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