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Design, simulation and development of static mixers for liquids

Grant number: 00/13183-6
Support type:Research Grants - Innovative Research in Small Business - PIPE
Duration: October 01, 2001 - February 28, 2005
Field of knowledge:Engineering - Chemical Engineering - Chemical Process Industries
Principal Investigator:Celso Fernandes Joaquim Júnior
Grantee:Celso Fernandes Joaquim Júnior
Company:Kroma Equipamentos Especiais Ltda
City: Botucatu

Abstract

With applications in the most varied of sectors, such as food, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, or drinks and toiletries, among others, the blending operation of shaking or mixing fluids plays an important part in industrial processes, and may be used for a variety of purposes, among which: the mixing of mixable or unmixable liquids; in the acceleration of heat exchange; to promote the incorporation of solids in liquid media; to catalyze chemical reactions; in the creation of solutions or suspensions. Many concepts of impellers have been created and studied, under a broad range of parameters, aiming, in most cases, to meet specific processual requirements. Outstanding among them are static mixers, devices set up in a line, provided with mixing elements inserted in a certain length of tube. The energy used to do the mixing derives from the pressure loss generated by the flow of fluid as it runs through the mixing elements through the action of pumping or gravity. Static mixers represent an alternative to traditional agitated vessels, being able to be used as much in batches as in, principally, continuous processes. Nevertheless, there is still a great dearth of methods which permit the presetting of specifications for the quality of mixture, in the face of technical limitations in the control of the mechanisms which govern its performance. The present research proposal aims to establish concepts for a project for the use of static mixers, optimizing them by means of computer simulation (CFD - computational fluid dynamics) and validating them by checking them against experimental data obtained on the workbench, allowing for a mathematical model to be drawn up, as well as the definition of extrapolation criteria for applications on an industrial scale. (AU)