Effects of heat exchanger tubes on hydrodynamics and CO2 capture of a sorbent-based fluidized bed reactor

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In virtual design and scale up of pilot-scale carbon capture systems, the coupled reactive multiphase flow problem must be solved to predict the adsorber's performance and capture efficiency under various operation conditions. This paper focuses on the detailed computational fluid dynamics (CFD) modeling of a pilot-scale fluidized bed adsorber equipped with vertical cooling tubes. Multiphase Flow with Interphase eXchanges (MFiX), an open-source multiphase flow CFD solver, is used for the simulations with custom code to simulate the chemical reactions and filtered sub-grid models to capture the effect of the unresolved details in the coarser mesh for simulations with reasonable accuracy and manageable computational effort. Previously developed filtered models for horizontal cylinder drag, heat transfer, and reaction kinetics have been modified to derive the 2D filtered models representing vertical cylinders in the coarse-grid CFD simulations. The effects of the heat exchanger configurations (i.e., horizontal or vertical tubes) on the adsorber's hydrodynamics and CO2 capture performance are then examined. A one-dimensional three-region process model is briefly introduced for comparison purpose. The CFD model matches reasonably well with the process model while provides additional information about the flow field that is not available with the process model.




Lai, C., Xu, Z., Li, T., Lee, A., Dietiker, J. F., Lane, W., & Sun, X. (2017). Effects of heat exchanger tubes on hydrodynamics and CO2 capture of a sorbent-based fluidized bed reactor. Powder Technology, 322, 202–213. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.powtec.2017.07.062

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