Bechtel customers have technical problems that are often complex. Industrial wastewater treatment is an example that has a complicated interplay of liquids and gases that may contain a significant fraction of dissolved/undissolved solids with potentially broad particle size and density distributions. Testing is a traditional route to search for solutions.
In this paper, Bechtel Fellow Joel Peltier and other computational fluid dynamic (CFD) industry experts sought to demonstrate that modeling is also a viable, accurate alternative, using an example of liquid/solids/gas mixing in a geometrically complicated mixing tank. The paper shows that contemporary computational modeling tools can resolve fine details of a complicated geometry and are instrumented to handle the physical interactions between modeled liquids, solids, and gases to yield accurate predictions of flow behavior, i.e. what you see in the flow solutions is also what you would measure in an experiment.
The examples shown for simulation of liquid-solids slurries within this paper underscore capabilities of contemporary commercial CFD flow codes are rapidly advancing and support a conclusion that a simulation-based assessment of wastewater treatment is possible with an expectation for fidelity to real-world physics.
To learn more, listen to the podcast interview with Joel or read the full paper below.