This paper presents flow simulations in packed beds by a coupled discrete element method (DEM) and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) approach. The realistic packing structure in packed beds is generated by DEM. Then the packing structure is imported into the CFD preprocessor to generate a mesh for flow simulations in packed beds. The subsequent CFD simulations are carried out. The predicted results reveal that not only the local behavior but also macroscopic quantities like the pressure drop depend remarkably on the local packing structural parameters, which is unable to be taken into account when using correlations with averaged values.

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