CFD-DEM Investigation on van der Waals Force in Gas-Solid Bubbling Fluidized Beds

Document Type: Research Paper


1 Process Design and Simulation Research Center, School of Chemical Engineering, College of Engineering, University of Tehran, P.O. Box 11155-4563, Tehran, Iran.

2 Depatment of Chemical Engineering, Amirkabir University of Technology (Tehran Polytechnic), PO Box: 15875-4413, Hafez 424, Tehran, Iran


Effect of interparticle force on the hydrodynamics of gas-solid fluidized beds was investigated using the combined method of computational fluid dynamics and discrete element method (CFD-DEM). The cohesive force between particles was considered to follow the van der Waals equation form. The model was validated by experimental results from literature in terms of bed voidage distribution and Eulerian solid velocity field. The results revealed that the incorporated model can satisfactorily predict the hydrodynamics of the fluidized bed in the presence of interparticle forces. Effect of interparticle force on the bubble rise characteristics, such as bubble stability, bubble diameter and bubble velocity, was investigated. It was shown that the emulsion voidage increases with increasing the interparticle force in the bed and it can hold more gas inside its structure. In addition, by increasing the interparticle force, size of bubbles and rise velocity of bubbles increase while the average velocity of particles decreases.


[1] Agbim, J., Nienow, A., & Rowe, P. (1971). "Inter-particle forces that suppress bubbling in gas fluidised beds.  "Chemical Engineering Science, Vol. 26, No. 8, pp. 1293-1294.

[2] Anderson, T. B., & Jackson, R.  (1967). "Fluid mechanical description of fluidized beds. Equations of motion. "Industrial & Engineering  Chemistry Fundamentals, Vol. 6, No. 4, pp. 527-539.

[3] Baerns, M. (1966). "Effect of interparticle adhesive forces on fluidization of fine particles. "Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Fundamentals, Vol. 5, No. 4, pp. 508-516.

[4] Bouffard, J., Bertrand, F., Chaouki, J., & Giasson, S. (2012). "Control of particle cohesion with a polymer coating and temperature adjustment. "AIChE Journal, Vol. 58, No. 12, pp. 3685-3696.

[5] Clift, R., Grace, J., & Weber, M. (1974). "Stability of bubbles in fluidized beds. "Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Fundamentals, Vol. 13, No. 1, pp. 45-51.

[6] Cundall, P.A., & Strack, O.D. (1979). "A discrete numerical model for granular assemblies. "Geotechnique, Vol. 29, No. 1, pp. 47-65.

[7] Dahneke, B. (1972). "The influence of flattening on the adhesion of particles. "Journal of Colloid and Interface Science, Vol. 40, No. 1, pp. 1-13.

[8] Di Felice, R. (1994). "The voidage function for fluid-particle interaction systems. "International Journal of Multiphase Flow, Vol. 20, No. 1, pp. 153-159.

[9] Feng, Y., & Yu, A. (2004). "Assessment of model formulations in the discrete particle simulation of gas-solid flow. "Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research, Vol. 43, No. 26, pp. 8378-8390.

[10] Geldart, D. (1973). "Types of gas fluidization. "Powder Technology, Vol. 7, No. 5, pp. 285-292.

[11] Geldart, D., & Abrahamsen, A. R. (1978). "Homogeneous fluidization of fine powders using various gases and pressures. "Powder Technology, Vol. 19, No. 1, pp. 133-136.

[12] Geldart, D., Harnby, N., & Wong, A. (1984). "Fluidization of cohesive powders. "Powder Technology, Vol. 37, No. 1, pp. 25-37.

[13] Hassani, M. A., Zarghami, R., Norouzi, H., & Mostoufi, N. (2013). "Numerical investigation ofeffect of electrostatic forces on the hydrodynamics of gas–solid fluidized beds. "Powder Technology, Vol. 246, pp. 16-25.

[14] Kobayashi, T., Tanaka, T., Kawaguchi, T., Mukai, T., & Tsuji, Y. (2006). "DEM analysis on flow patterns of Geldart's group A particles in fluidized bed. "Journal of the Society of Powder Technology, Japan, Vol. 43, No. 10, pp. 737-745.

[15] Kobayashi, T., Kawaguchi, T., Tanaka, T., & Tsuji, Y. (2003). "DEM analysis of fluidized behaviour of Geldart's Group A particles (pressure drop and stress distribution). "Paper presented at the Proceeding of The second Asian  Particle Technology Symposium, pp. 17-19.

[16] Kobayashi, T., Tanaka, T., Shimada, N., & Kawaguchi, T. (2013). "DEM–CFD analysis of fluidization behavior of Geldart Group A particles using a dynamic adhesion force model. "Powder Technology, Vol. 248, pp. 143-152.

[17] Kruggel-Emden, H., Wirtz, S., & Scherer, V. (2008). "A study on tangential force laws applicable to the discrete element method (DEM) for materials with viscoelastic or plastic behavior. "Chemical Engineering Science, Vol. 63, No. 6, pp. 1523-1541.

[18] Lettieri, P., Newton, D., & Yates, J. (2001). "High temperature effects on the dense phase properties of gas fluidized beds. "Powder Technology, Vol. 120, No. 1, pp. 34-40.

[19] Lettieri, P., Yates, J., & Newton, D. (2000). "The influence of interparticle forces on the fluidization behaviour of some industrial materials at high temperature. "Powder Technology, Vol. 110, No. 1, pp. 117-127.

[20] McLaughlin, L. J., & Rhodes, M. J. (2001). "Prediction of fluidized bed behaviour in the presence of liquid bridges. "Powder Technology, Vol. 114, No. 1, pp. 213-223.

[21] Morooka, S., Kusakabe, K., Kobata, A., & Kato, Y. (1988). "Fluidization state of ultrafine powders. "Journal of Chemical Engineering of Japan, Vol. 21, No. 1, pp. 41-46.

[22] Norouzi, H. R., Mostoufi, N., Zarghami, R., & Sotudeh-Gharebagh, R. (2016). Coupled CFD-DEM Modeling: Formulation, Implementation and Application to Multiphase Flows: John Wiley & Sons

[23] Pandit, J. K., Wang, X., & Rhodes, M. (2007). "A DEM study of bubble formation in Group B  fluidized beds with and without cohesive interparticle forces. "Chemical Engineering Science, Vol. 62, No. 1, pp. 159-166.

[24] Patankar, S. (1980). Numerical heat transfer and fluid flow: CRC press.

[25] Rhodes, M., Wang, X., Nguyen, M., Stewart, P., & Liffman, K. (2001). "Use of discrete elementmethod simulation in studying fluidization characteristics: influence of interparticle force. "Chemical Engineering Science, Vol. 56, No. 1, pp.69-76.

[26] Rowe, P., Santoro, L., & Yates, J. (1978). "The division of gas between bubble and interstitial phases in fluidised beds of fine powders." Chemical Engineering Science, Vol. 33, No. 1, pp. 133-140.

[27] Seville, J., & Clift, R. (1984). "The effect of  thin liquid  layers on fluidisation characteristics."Powder Technology, Vol. 37, No. 1, pp. 117-129.

[28] Shabanian, J., & Chaouki, J. (2014). "Local characterization of a gas–solid fluidized bed in the presence of thermally  induced  interparticle forces. "Chemical Engineering Science, Vol. 119, pp. 261-273.

[29] Shabanian, J., & Chaouki, J. (2015). "Hydrodynamics of a gas–solid  fluidized  bed  with thermally induced interparticle forces. "Chemical Engineering Journal, Vol. 259, pp. 135-152.

[30] Shabanian, J., & Chaouki, J. (2017). "Similarities between gas-solid fluidization in the presence of interparticle forces at high temperature and induced by a polymer coating approach. "Powder Technology, Vol.320, pp.155-160.

[31] Shabanian, J., Fotovat, F., Chaouki, J., & Bouffard, J. (2011). "Fluidization behavior in a gas-solid fluidized bed with thermally induced inter-particle forces. "10th International Conference on Circulating Fluidized Beds and Fluidization Technology - CFB-10, T. Knowlton, PSRI Eds, ECI Symposium Series.

[32] Si, C., & Guo, Q. (2008). "Wavelet analysis of particle concentration signals in an acoustic bubbling fluidized bed. "Chemical engineering & technology, Vol. 31, No. 1, pp. 1597-1604.

[33] Tatemoto, Y., Mawatari, Y., & Noda, K. (2005). "Numerical simulation of cohesive particle motion in vibrated fluidized bed. "Chemical Engineering Science, Vol. 60, No. 18, pp.5010-5021.

[34] Tsuji, Y., Kawaguchi, T., & Tanaka, T. (1993). "Discrete particle simulation of two-dimensionalfluidized bed. "Powder Technology, Vol. 77, No. 1, pp. 79-87.

[35] Van der Schaaf, J., Schouten, J., Johnsson, F., & Van den Bleek, C. (2002). "Non-intrusive determination of bubble and slug length scales in fluidized beds by decomposition of the power spectral density of pressure time series. "International Journal of Multiphase Flow, Vol. 28, No. 5, pp. 865-880.

[36] Willett, C. (1999). The Micromechanics of Wet Particulate Materials. PhD Thesis, University of Birmingham.

[37]  Xu, B., & Yu, A. (1997). "Numerical  simulation of the gas-solid flow in a fluidized bed by combining discrete particle method with computational fluid dynamics. "Chemical Engineering Science, Vol. 52, No. 16, pp. 2785-2809.

[38] Yao, W., Guangsheng, G., Fei, W., & Jun, W. (2002). "Fluidization and agglomerate structure of SiO 2 nanoparticles. "Powder Technology,Vol. 124, No. 1, pp. 152-159.

[39] Yates, J., & Newton, D. (1986). "Fine particle effects in a fluidized-bed reactor. "Chemical Engineering Science, Vol. 41, No. 4, pp. 801-806.

[40] Ye, M., Van der Hoef, M., & Kuipers, J. (2004). "A numerical study of fluidization behavior of Geldart A particles using a discrete particle model. "Powder Technology, Vol. 139, No. 2, pp. 129-139.

[41] Yu, A. B., & Xu, B. H. (2003). "Particle‚Äźscale modelling of gas–solid flow in fluidisation. "Journal of Chemical Technology and Biotechnology, Vol. 78, No. 2-3, pp. 111-121.