ATCx DEM 2020 - Optimizing pneumatic conveying of cohesive dairy powders using EDEM–CFD coupling

Pneumatic conveying pipelines undergo series of direction changes due to space restrictions, site location, or position of receiving silos and hoppers. When dairy powder and air flows around pipe bends or experiences any change in flow direction during pneumatic conveying, the particles form a rope-like structure due to inertial, gravitational and centrifugal effects. The formation of such particle ropes can lead to particle stratification, re-agglomeration, deposition, and pipe blockages especially when handling cohesive powders.

This research focuses on the design and optimization of novel flow-aided pipe bends that prevents powder deposition, pipe clogging, and improves throughput. Several conceptual designs of such flow-aids are investigated for various bend orientation by coupling Altair EDEM with Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) supported with targeted experimentation. The optimum flow-aided design integrated into a pilot-scale conveying test rig results in higher rope dispersion after the than similar test rig with conventional bends.

Presented as part of the virtual ATCx Discrete Element Method in November 2020.

Speaker:Akeem Olaleye, University of Limerick
Duration: 24 minutes
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