Abstract

An experiment performed in SPARC experimental facility, was simulated with the computational fluid dynamics code OpenFOAM. The experiment took place in two phases. In the first phase, a helium-air layer was generated, which was then eroded with a vertical air jet injected in the vessel axis during the second experimental phase. A three-dimensional and a quasi-two-dimensional numerical models of a cylindrical vessel were developed and mesh convergence studies were performed. The mixing process was simulated as a single-phase flow with common momentum equation. Included gas species mass fractions are considered as passive scalars and are calculated using the transport equation. However, term describing the molecular diffusion cannot be neglected in our case and had to be added to diffusion equation implemented in default OpenFOAM solver. The k-ε turbulence model with additional buoyancy term implemented in OpenFOAM was used for turbulence modelling. Despite improvement of the physical model and following the Best Practice Guidelines, the results obtained with OpenFOAM CFD code still, at some locations, differ substantially from the experimental results. A modified definition of low Reynolds number eddy viscosity correction function is proposed, which significantly improves the agreement between measurements and calculation results.

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