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Numerical Simulation h2o

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ScienceDirect

Energy Procedia 75 (2015) 3119 3126

Process

Lianying Zhang, Yuan Wang, Yongxia Fu, Liu Xing, Liwen Jin*

Department of Building Environment and Energy Engineering, Xian Jiaotong University, Shaanxi and 710049, China

Abstract

directly the overall efficiency and volume. In this paper, the commercial simulation software CFDFLUENT was used to simulate the falling film absorption process of the coolant LiBr/H2O solution. This

research attempts to know the effects of various Reynolds number on the absorption progress. The

simulation results indicated that there was an optimized Reynolds number of liquid film which leads to an

averaged maximum mass flux of 2.910-3kgm-2s-1 at the interface. The local interfacial mass transfer

coefficient arrives at the maximum at the inlet, then decreases rapidly along the flow direction and

approaches to a constant value gradually. It is also find that the local interfacial mass transfer coefficient

increases with the increase of Reynolds number while the local heat transfer coefficient exhibits the

opposite trend.

Authors.

Published

by Elsevier

Ltd. This

is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license

2015

2015The

The

Authors.

Published

by Elsevier

Ltd.

(http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).

Selection and/or peer-review under responsibility of ICAE

Peer-review under responsibility of Applied Energy Innovation Institute

Keywords

absorption; numerical simulation; heat and mass transfer; H2O/LiBr

1. Introduction

Absorption air-conditioning system is achieving acceptance as a promising candidate for solar energy

and waste heat recovery [1]. Absorption of vapour into a falling liquid film is an important chemical

process for absorption air-conditioning. There were plenty of researches that have been carried out on the

combined heat and mass transfer in the absorber. Nakoryakov and Grigoreva [2] obtained analytical

solutions for combined heat and mass transfer by Fourier separation of variables techniques. After that, in

E-mail address: lwjin@mail.xjtu.edu.cn.

1876-6102 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license

(http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).

Peer-review under responsibility of Applied Energy Innovation Institute

doi:10.1016/j.egypro.2015.07.644

3120

1983 Grossman [3] developed the parabolic velocity profile to replace the uniform velocity, that is, the

velocity in the inlet is corresponded to Nusselt solution. Grossman [4] considered the falling film model

with the complete form governing equations to evaluate the contribution of the inter-diffusion and

obtained a short-exposure time solution. Since that time the model has been extended to film thickness,

shear stress and latent heat at the free surface and so on. Conlisk [5] found that the heat transfer

coefficient increases with a decrease of film thickness; while the mass transfer coefficient decreases with

a decrease of film thickness. There were also other studies focused on the mathematical model of coupled

heat and mass transfer during the absorption process [6-8]. In addition, there were many authors have

studied the different factors which influence the absorption process. Such as Hamza [9] studied the effect

of the non-absorbable gases on the absorption efficiency and so on.

Despite of the large amount of knowledge of falling film acquired, there are still many improvements

for its model. In particular, as we all know, falling film flows are classified in non-wavy laminar, wavy

and turbulence according to the Reynolds number variations [10]. We can learn that the Reynolds number

has significant influence on the absorption process. However, there are few authors to study the effects of

Reynolds number on the absorption process.

In this paper, the commercial simulation software CFD-FLUENT was used to simulate the falling film

absorption process of the coolant LiBr/H2O solution. The lithium bromide aqueous solution properties

and absorption heating were expressed by the User Defined Functions (UDF) which is an extended

function of the Fluent. The concentration of the lithium bromide aqueous solution was defined by UDS

(User Defined Scalars). The diffusion coefficient was assumed to be constant with considering the

molecular diffusion and convective diffusion. The change of variables was gotten by UDM (User Define

Memory). It was obtained that the wall temperature and the interfacial mass flux along the falling film

change with the different Reynolds number. The interfacial local mass transfer and heat transfer

coefficient along the falling film were discussed.

Nomenclature

c

T temperature(C)

Tw wall temperature(C)

2

time(s)

mean flow rate (ms-1)

hi

2

Pressure(Pa)

Subscripts

w wall

i interface

in inlet

0 initial

p pressure

2. Analysis model and governing equations

The system analyzed in the present study is depicted schematically in Fig. 1. A falling film of the

LiBr aqueous solution flows into a full of water vapor absorber along the vertical wall.

In addition, to simplify the governing equations, the following assumptions were made:

1) The density and specific heat are constant, the pressure p throughout the lithium bromide aqueous

solution is constant;

2) The heat conductivity coefficient and viscosity depend on temperature and concentration of the

lithium bromide aqueous;

3) The liquid film is flat without surface waves;

4) Vapor pressure is constant and the resistance of mass transfer is ignored;

5) The interface of vapor-liquid is in a state of equilibrium; the concentration of the film is dependent

on the temperature and pressure.

6) The film thickness and flow velocities are considered as constant; Absorption heat is added by

source item and conducted to the lithium bromide aqueous.

7) The solution is a Newtonian binary mixture where the absorbent is non-volatile and the flow is a

laminar flow;

8) The heat flux transfer to the gas phase can be neglected.

9) Ignoring the influence of non-absorbable gases.

3121

3122

Under the above assumptions, the 2D control equation could be reduced as follows:

Continuity equation

( U v)

(1)

Momentum equation

wv

( U vv) p ( Pv) g

wt

Energy equation

wT

( U vcT )

wt

(kT )

w(mx hi )

wy

(2)

(3)

wc

(vc) D(c)

wt

(4)

The boundary condition and initial condition are as follows:

1) The boundary conditions are as follows:

(5)

u=0; v=0; wc 0 ; T = Tw

wx

2) At the entrance, the concentration of the solution is in equilibrium at its pressure and temperature.

According to the Nusselt theory, transverse velocity v is zero and the downstream velocity profile u is

given as follows:

3

2

c c0 , u( y) 2 u(2( G ) ( G ) )

where

u

(6)

3*P 13

4.0 *

)

Re

U2g

P

UG

(7)

3) At the interface, LiBr/H2O solution is in thermodynamic equilibrium state. Under the low Reynolds

number, the molecule diffusion plays a main role on the mass transfer in the lithium bromide aqueous

solution. Ficks law is used to determine the mass flux mx as follow:

U D wC

( )

m

c c( Pi, Ti) ui 1.5 u hx mx hi , x ci wy y G

(8)

4) At the outlet, the outflow boundary condition is adopted. The exit flow is assumed to be close to

fully developed condition.

wc

0 wT 0

wx

wx

(9)

3. Model validation

The simulation software CFD-FLUENT was used to simulate the heat and mass transfer in the falling

film absorption process. The CFD-FLUENT employs a control-volume-based technique to convert

governing equations into algebraic equations. Pre-processing software Gambit was used to establish

physical model. The fixed rectangular domain was adopted which adapted to the computational domain.

The mash number is 500020 in direction x and y. The velocity distribution of the film at the entrance,

the concentration distribution in interface, mass flux and the physical property of the LiBr aqueous

solution were defined by UDF and their values were obtained by UDS. Second order upwind

discretization scheme was used to discretize the Momentum, Energy and Mass transfer governing

3123

equations. PRESTO Interpolation was employed to deal with the pressure item. The PISO method was

used to couple the pressure and velocity equations.

The validity of the model was verified by comparing the calculated interfacial temperature and

concentration with the results of Kawae [11] under the same conditions, as shown in Fig. 2. It can be

learned that the present results agree very well with Kawaes.

320

\ PP

.DZDH

WHPSHUDWXUH/K

318

316

314

312

310

308

5.5E-4 1E-3

0.01

0.1

x/m

(a)

(b)

Fig. 2 Comparison the present work with analytical solution of Kawae

The operating conditions are listed in Table 1. The properties of LiBr solution are collected from the Ref.

[12].

Table 1 Operating conditions of absorber parameter

Operating parameter

Number

319.65

0.6012

308.15

Pressure P/Pa

1000.0

0. 5

The Reynolds number has significant influence on the flow of the falling film. Due to the surface

tension and gravity, the falling film appears some subtle fluctuation and the waves amplitude increases

with an increase of Reynolds number. In this article, the effects of various Reynolds number on the heat

and mass transfer of the falling film were investigated. The Reynolds number was based on the film

thickness. The operating conditions are shown in Table 2.

Table 2 Operating conditions at different Reynolds number

Re

thickness of film /mm

film flow rate /kgm-1s-1

10.6

20.0

50.0

100.0

150.0

0.2

0.25

0.34

0.42

0.48

0.0142

0.02675

0.06699

0.13375

0.20063

319.65

319.65

319.65

319.65

319.65

308.15

308.15

308.15

308.15

308.15

3124

The variations of temperature along the falling film interface is shown in Fig. 3. Due to the wall

cooling and the less absorption along the falling film downward, the interfacial temperature declines

gradually. The large temperature difference between the wall and the interface leads to the interfacial

temperature declines rapidly at the inlet.

The larger Reynolds number, the higher interface temperature, and the insignificant temperature

change. This is because that a larger Reynolds number results in a higher velocity of falling film and then

the more heat is taken into the LiBr solution which causes a reduced decline of the falling film

temperature.

320

318

Re=10.6

Re=20.0

Re=50.0

Re=100.0

Re=150.0

temperature/K

316

314

312

310

308

0.1

0.2

L/m

0.3

0.4

0.5

The effects of Reynolds number on the mass transfer flux and average mass transfer flux along the

falling film are shown in Fig. 4 and Fig. 5. The local interfacial mass transfer flux arrives at the maximum

at the inlet, then decrease rapidly along the flow direction and approach to a constant value gradually. The

highest concentration of the LiBr aqueous solution results in the largest mass transfer driving force at the

inlet. With the solution falling downward, the concentration of solution decreases. Then the mass transfer

flux also decreases.

From Fig. 4 we can learn that the larger the Reynolds number of liquid film, the further away from the

inlet to the position of the maximum mass transfer flux, and the slower the heat transfer flux decrease.

Larger the Reynolds number corresponds to smaller the maximum mass transfer flux. It can be found

from Fig. 5 that when the length of the liquid film is 500mm, in the case of Reynolds number 50, the

average mass transfer flux arrives the maximum, that is 2.910-3 kgm-2s-1; while in the case of the

Reynolds number 10.2, the average mass transfer flux arrives the minimum, that is 2.2110-3 kgm-2s-1.

Therefore, when the length of the liquid film is constant, there is an optimized Reynolds number of liquid

film which leads to a maximum average mass transfer flux.

3125

0.0030

0.008

Re=10.6

Re=20.0

Re=50.0

Re=100.0

Re=150.0

0.004

0.002

average mass transfer rate/NJP V

0.006

0.0029

0.0028

0.0027

0.0026

0.0025

0.0024

0.0023

0.0022

0.00215

0.000

0.0

0.1

0.2

0.3

0.4

0.5

20

40

60

80

L/m

100

120

140

Re

Fig .4 Variation of mass transfer flux along the falling film Fig. 5 Variation of average mass transfer flux along the falling film

The effect of the Reynolds number on the local heat transfer coefficient is shown in Fig. 6. Neglecting

the entrance thermal effect (there is a higher heat transfer coefficient at the entrance than that of the full

development because the thermal boundary layer at the entrance is thinner), the increase of Reynolds

number results in the decrease of local heat transfer coefficient. The smaller Reynolds number indicates

the smaller velocity of the falling film and the thinner liquid film, which results in the smaller heat

resistance. So that the local heat transfer coefficient is higher with the smaller Reynolds number.

The variation of local mass transfer coefficient along the falling film under different Reynolds number

is shown in Fig. 7. Local mass transfer coefficient reduces along the falling film. With the increase of the

Reynolds number of the falling film, the interfacial mass transfer coefficient increases. Because the larger

Reynolds number conduce to the shorter time for LiBr aqueous solution absorbing the steam, which

makes less water vapor being absorbed into the LiBr aqueous solution. Therefore, the subsequent water

vapor is easier to be absorbed.

30

u103

20

R e=10.6

R e=20.0

R e=50.0

R e=100.0

R e=150.0

25

-1

18

14

12

10

Re=10.6

Re=20.0

Re=50.0

Re=100.0

Re=150.0

8

6

4

2

0.10

20

-1

16

0.1m-0.2m

local mass transfer coefficient/ms

-2

-1

22

15

10

0.08

0.06

0.04

0.02

0.10

0.12

0.14

0.16

0.18

0.20

L/m

0

0.0

0.1

0.2

0.3

0.4

0.5

L/m

Fig. 6 Variation of local heat transfer coefficient along the falling film

0.0

0.1

0.2

0.3

0.4

0.5

L/m

falling film

5. Conclusions

The simulation of the falling film absorption process of the coolant LiBr/H2O solution was numerically

investigated by software CFD-FLUENT. The more practical boundary condition in the falling film was

considered. At the different Reynolds number, the interface temperature, mass transfer flux, the local heat

and mass transfer coefficient were investigated. The obtained results can be summarized as follows:

(1) For the different Reynolds number, the mass transfer flux at the interface increases rapidly to the

3126

maximum at the inlet and then decrease to an approximate constant. The larger the Reynolds number, the

slower decrease of the mass transfer flux after reaching their maximum. At the laminar flow, there is an

optimized Reynolds number of liquid film which leads to an averaged maximum mass flux at a fixed

length of the film.

(2) An increase of the Reynolds number of falling film leads to an increase of local mass transfer

coefficient. On the contrary, an increase of the Reynolds number of falling film conduces to a decrease of

interfacial local heat transfer coefficient.

(3) The larger the Reynolds number of liquid film, the further away from the inlet to the position of the

maximum mass transfer flux. The larger the Reynolds number corresponds to the smaller maximum mass

transfer flux.

Acknowledgements

The authors are grateful for financial supports by the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central

Universities (XJJ2012106), and Science and Technology Project of Shaanxi Province (2012K10-16).

References

[1] Shahram Karami, Bijan Farhanieh. A numerical study on the absorption of water vapor into a film of aqueous LiBr falling

along a vertical plate. Heat Mass Transfer. 2009, 46:197207

[2] Nakoriakov V.E, Grigoreva NI. Exact solution of combined heat and mass transfer problem during film absorption. Journal of

Engineering Physics, 1977, 33 (5): 1349-1353.

[3] Grossman G. Simultaneous heat and mass transfer in film absorption under laminar flow [J]. International Journal of Heat and

Mass Transfer, 1983, 26 (3): 357-371.

[4] Grossman G. Analysis of interdiffusion in film absorption [J]. International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer, 1987, 30 (1):

205-208.

[5] A.T. Conlisk. Analytical solutions for the heat and mass transfer in a falling film absorber. Chemical Engineering Science.

1995,4(50): 651-660

[6] T. L. MERRILL. Combined heat and mass transfer during bubble absorption in binary solutions, International Journal of Heat

Mass Transfer. 1997, 40: 589~603

[7] M. Mittermaier, P. Schulze, F. Ziegler. A numerical model for combined heat and mass transfer in a laminar liquid falling film

with simplified hydrodynamics. International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer. 2014,70: 9901002

[8] T. Meyer, F. Ziegler. Analytical solution for combined heat and mass transfer in laminar falling film absorption using first

type boundary conditions at the interface. International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer. 2014,73:141151

[9] Hamza M. Habib, Byard D. Wood. Simultaneous heat and mass transfer in film absorption with the presence of nonabsorbable gases. Journal of Heat Transfer. 2001, 123: 984-989

[10] June Kee Min, Il Seouk Park, Numerical study for laminar wavy motions of liquid film flow on vertical wall. International

Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer. 2011, 54: 3256-3266

[11] Kawae N, Shigechi T, Kanemaru K, et al. Water vapor evaporation into laminar film flow of a lithium bromide-water

solution(influence of variable properties and inlet film thickness on absorption mass transfer rate)[J]. Heat Transfer Janpan ese

Research, 1989, 18 (3): 58-70.

[12] Jia Mingsheng. Several main calculating equations of Properties parameter of LiBr-H2OJournal of Zhanjiang Ocean

University. 2002, 22 (3): 52-58

Biography

Dr. Jin Liwen obtained his Ph.D. from Nanyang Technological University of Singapore and

then worked at National University of Singapore. He is currently a professor working at

Xian Jiaotong University, China. His research interests include building energy analysis,

solar heat storage and heat transfer in microchannels.

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