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Comparison of particle tracking algorithms in commercial CFD packages: sedimentation and diffusion.

Authors
  • 1
  • 1 Department of Mechanical Engineering, Rochester Institute of Technology, Rochester, New York 14623, USA. [email protected]
Type
Published Article
Journal
Inhalation toxicology
1091-7691
Publication Date
Volume
19
Issue
6-7
Pages
517–531
Identifiers
PMID: 17497530
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

Computational fluid dynamic modeling software has enabled microdosimetry patterns of inhaled toxins and toxicants to be predicted and visualized, and is being used in inhalation toxicology and risk assessment. These predicted microdosimetry patterns in airway structures are derived from predicted airflow patterns within these airways and particle tracking algorithms used in computational fluid dynamics (CFD) software packages. Although these commercial CFD codes have been tested for accuracy under various conditions, they have not been well tested for respiratory flows in general. Nor has their particle tracking algorithm accuracy been well studied. In this study, three software packages, Fluent Discrete Phase Model (DPM), Fluent Fine Particle Model (FPM), and ANSYS CFX, were evaluated. Sedimentation and diffusion were each isolated in a straight tube geometry and tested for accuracy. A range of flow rates corresponding to adult low activity (minute ventilation = 10 L/min) and to heavy exertion (minute ventilation = 60 L/min) were tested by varying the range of dimensionless diffusion and sedimentation parameters found using the Weibel symmetric 23 generation lung morphology. Numerical results for fully developed parabolic and uniform (slip) profiles were compared respectively, to Pich (1972) and Yu (1977) analytical sedimentation solutions. Schum and Yeh (1980) equations for sedimentation were also compared. Numerical results for diffusional deposition were compared to analytical solutions of Ingham (1975) for parabolic and uniform profiles. Significant differences were found among the various CFD software packages and between numerical and analytical solutions. Therefore, it is prudent to validate CFD predictions against analytical solutions in idealized geometry before tackling the complex geometries of the respiratory tract.

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