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CFD-Based Multiscale

Modelling of Bubble-Particle
Collision Rates and Efficiencies
in a Flotation Cell
Tom Liu, Peter Koh and Phil Schwarz
CSIRO Minerals
Multiscale Modelling in
Industrial Systems
Team Members:
Phil Schwarz, CM (Project leader)
Nick Stokes, CMIS
Murray Rudman, CMIT
Alf Uhlherr, CMS
Peter Witt, CM
Paul Cleary, CMIS
Tom Liu, CM
Outline
• Background information
• Brief introduction to multiscale modelling
• Brief introduction to the modelling of
flotation processes
• CFD-based multiscale modelling strategy
for a flotation cell
• Some simulation results and future works
• Conclusions
• Froth flotation is a complex three
phase physico-chemical processes
• Prediction of flotation kinetics has
not been possible
Life Is Not Simple
The extension of direct free-
surface modelling techniques to
resolve every bubble and particle
in a industrial-scale vessel would
require far more computational
power than will be available
Multiscale Modelling
Jenkins et al. ICCS 2005, Atlanta
Multiscale Modelling Methods
• Domain decomposition method
• Process decomposition method
Jenkins et al., ICCS 2005, Atlanta
Continuum model
Molecular model
Jenkins et al. ICCS 2005, Atlanta
Current Modelling Methods
For Flotation Processes
• Correlation methods
• First-principles methods
• CFD methods
Koh et al.(2003)
Examples of Problems
2
15
4
5 . 1
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+ ~
b
p
C
R
R
E
0.72
Re
| ¬ |
C
E Re
?
Nguyen & Kmet (1992)
m D m D
P P
µ µ 3 . 15 ) ( ; 1 . 30 ) ( = O = A
Koh & Schwarz (2003)
Examples of Problems
Examples of Problems
Prediction formula:
Quiescent condition
Bubble size
Bubble rising velocity
Bubble Re
Collision efficiency
Flotation cell:
Turbulent condition
Stirring speed, cell
structure, gas flow
rate, … Bubble
size, bubble velocity,
bubble Re
Collision efficiency






Microscale
Bubble size
population balance
(Coalescence/Break-up)
Turbulent models for
collision frequency,
collision efficiency,
attachment, detachment

Drag coefficient
model
CFD model (Macroscale)
Flotation circuit model (Flowsheet)
Flotation
rate
Structure Of CFD-based
Multiscale Flotation Modelling
Five different types of computational experiments
are defined to calculate:
(1)Bubble-particle collision frequencies
(2)Bubble-particle collision efficiencies
(3)Bubble-particle attachment and detachment rates
(4)Drag coefficients for bubbles
(5)Bubble coalescence and break-up rates
CFD Model with time averaged
RANS and multifluid
techniques through suitable
microscale closure relations
Some Results
• A wavelet-based adaptive mesh
scheme to track moving free
surfaces
• 2D CFD turbulent collision model
• 3D CFD model for Non-
Newtonian drag coefficients
Bubble Rising Simulation
A wavelet-based adaptive mesh scheme was
embedded into CFX to track moving free surfaces
Bubble-Particle Collisions
Comparisons Between CFD Predicted
Turbulent Collision Efficiencies and Laminar
Collision Efficiencies
Comparisons Between Drag
Coefficients for Newtonian and
Non-Newtonian Fluids

Further works
• 3D CFD turbulent collision model
• LES of bubble-particle collision
• 2D CFD turbulent collision frequency
model
• CFD bubble coalescence/breakup
model
• Coupling macroscale model to
microscale models
Conclusions
• Multiscale modelling strategy for a
flotation cell
• Wavelet-based adaptive moving mesh
scheme
• CFD-based numerical experiments for
turbulent bubble-particle collisions and
Non-Newtonian drag coefficients
• Further works