Computational Transport Processes

Group Members - (see our academic line )


Hai Duong (Post-Doc, 2006)

Holly Krutka (PhD, 2007)

Eric Moore (PhD, 2004)                                     Vishnu Marla (PhD, 2005)

Kien Nguyen (MS, 2007)                                  

Nicholas Spencer (MS, 2006)                           Roman Voronov (MS, 2006)                   

Nishitha Thummala (MS, 2004)                        Bojan Mitrovic (MS, 2002)                                

Hio-Wai Lao (BS, 2000; MS, 2002)                    Venkat Ramasubramanian (MS, 2002)

Jay Moore (BS, 2000)                                        David Atkinson (BS, 2001)

Dale Simpson (BS, 2002)                                  Susan Boyer (BS, 2002)

Patrick Figaro (BS, 2002)                                  Asad Khan (BS, 2003)

LaToya Babbs    (BS, 2003)                              Anh Nguen (BS, 2003)

Jeremy Jones (BS, 2003)                                 Alex Ibanez (BS, 2004)

Jon Demster (BS, 2005)                                    Ashlee Ford (BS, 2005)

Thomas Chancellor, Jr. (BS, 2005)                  Adam Bortka (BS, 2005)

Sara Habib (BS, 2005)                                        Chris Clark (BS, 2006)

James Carmer (BS, 2007)

Nihit Gupta (Summer Intern, 2006)                  Enrico Magrofuoco (Summer Intern, 2006)

Israel Chavez Sumarriva (Intern from National University of Peru)



Project : Flow in vascular vessels 

This work is focused on the flow structure for blood flow in human veins and arteries. A commercial software will be used to simulate the flow in 3D pipes that bifurcate both in a symmetric and a non-symmetric fashion. The regions of secondary, low velocity flow will be studied, to determine whether conditions for clot formation exist.

Project : Heat Transfer in Carbon Nanotube Composites 

The presence of carbon nanotubes in composites can change the thermal properties of such materials.  The goal is to develop computational methods that can determine these thermal properties as a function of the nanotube dispersion pattern and the geometric characteristics of the nanotubes. This project is in collaboration with Prof. Kieran Mullen from the Department of Physics. 

Project : Simulation of the flow field that results from two rectangular jets using RANS and LES models

A commercial software package (FLUENT) is used to simulate the flow that results when two air jets come together at different angles. The software has the capability to model the turbulent flow field using a k-epsilon approach, a Reynolds Stress Model or a Large Eddy Simulation. We are conducting accurate 2D simulations and validating the results with experimental results obtained in Prof. Shambaugh's laboratory. The goal is to develop predictive, dimensionless correlations for the flow field. Such correlations can be of value for the design of dies for melt blowing (an industrial process for polymer fiber production that uses air jets to attenuate the fibers). In addition, the effects of the presence of a moving fiber in the flow field are investigated.

Project : Drag reduction with the use of macromolecules

The development of the methodology for friction drag reduction for ships and submarines is a subject of ongoing interest to the Navy.  One of the current research thrusts is the use of polymers/surfactants and microbubbles in the near-wall region to promote a reduction in the wall shear stress, and hence in the friction drag.  An alternate solution that does not involve the continuous addition of surfactant/polymers or microbubbles is proposed in this project.

The goal of this project is to use surface-mounted polymer chains and/or nanotubes to modify the near-wall flow field and hence the wall shear stress.  We want to provide a physical understanding of the mechanics of drag reduction by this novel method and to demonstrate the practical viability of it. Direct numerical simulations (DNS) of flow in a channel with modified walls will be undertaken.  This project involves extensive collaboration with the groups of Dr. Kumar Parthasarathy in Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering (who will conduct the experiments in a real life flow field), Dr. Lloyd Lee in Chemical Engineering (who will work on the understanding of the process at the molecular level), and Dr. Jerry Newman (who will actually grow macromolecules on surfaces to be tested).

Project : Flow around carbon nanotubes 

This project will study the flow field around carbon nanotubes. The hydrophobic nature of the nanotubes is found to affect the flow of water around them. The first step will be to investigate flow around one nanotube attached to the wall of a channel, and then to investigate the flow field around a collection of nanotubes.


  Faculty collaborators: Dr. Henry Neeman (Director of OSCER, Visiting Assistant Professor in Computer Science)

                                                      Dr. Evan Lemley (Professor, University of Central Oklahoma, Engineering Physics)

Project : Model Based Simulator for flow through porous media - Development of HiMuST

We are developing an integrated simulator for flow through heterogeneous porous materials using a hierarchy of simulations. The software is composed of three components that can also work as stand-alone simulators. The integrated tool is called HiMuST, which stands for Hierarchical Multiscale Simulator Technology.

Current approaches involve the use of simulations having a single physical scale (see the projects below). However, recent advances in High Performance Computing have made it possible to increase significantly the problem size. We are combining the individual simulation components into an integrated multiscale system that will be able to include all physical scales and will self-adjust in accordance with the input data. Emphasis is placed on the portability, scalability, efficiency and extensibility of the final product. The simulator will be an improved prediction tool for hydrocarbon reservoir management and will be ready for use on integrated grid architectures, as they become available.

Henry's web page.

  Phuong Le (Graduate student in Chemical Engineering)

Project : Lagrangian methods for turbulent transport

Turbulent flow is the rule rather than the exception in flows around naval vessels or weapons, in the ocean and the atmosphere, and in tanks, pipes or reactors. Transfer of momentum and heat between ocean currents and the atmosphere, dispersion of pollutants in the atmosphere, heat exchange and mixing, are all examples where turbulent diffusion plays a key role. A Lagrangian approach, which is the natural way to study turbulent transport, will be used. While such an approach presents difficulty in the laboratory, a Lagrangian study can be accomplished numerically. The innovation or the proposed work is to (a) use hydrodynamics generated by a Direct Numerical Simulation to generate Lagrangian data for turbulent dispersion, (b) study chemical reaction in turbulence in the Lagrangian framework, and (c) couple reaction and heat/mass transfer in turbulence for an integrated transport-flow Lagrangian Direct Simulation

The project goal is to improve our physical understanding of the fundamental mechanisms, develop a theory and model turbulent dispersion.

Project : Lagrangian study of heat transfer from the wall in turbulent flow environments

The enhanced transfer of heat or mass in turbulent flows is one of the most important characteristics of turbulence. The conventional way to deal with transport in simulations is to solve the heat or mass balance along with the momentum equation. The Lagrangian approach to transport is different, in the sense that the temperature or concentration profiles are viewed as the result of the behavior of a series of continuous point sources located at the solid boundary. This project uses a Lagrangian data-base for different types of fluids (with Pr=0.1, 0.7, 1, 3, 10, 100, 200, 500, 2400, 7000, 15000 and 50000) to reconstruct the mean statistics of the temperature profile. The hydrodynamics were generated with a Direct Numerical Simulation of turbulent flow in the channel and the Lagrangian data consist of the trajectories of thousands of thermo-particles that move inside the velocity field.

The goal is to study the effects of molecular Pr on transfer coefficients and to predict the transport behavior from a single probability function, that describes the single point source behavior.

  Roman Voronov  (Graduate student in Chemical Engineering)

Project : Microscale Flow and Transport

The Lattice Boltzmann Method, LBM, is used to simulate the flow of single and two phase fluids through porous media at the pore scale. Flow through porous media is a multi-scale phenomenon that requires a multi-scale approach to study it. The LBM is ideal for the microscopic scale study. It based on fundamental equations and can handle complex boundary conditions. Single phase flows through different geometries are studied first. Then two-phase flows will be studied for fluid velocities for both Darcy and non-Darcy flow conditions.

Furthermore, the transport of heat or mass in microchannels will be studied. Specifically, the effects of the presence of carbon nanotubes on the transport process will be examined, using Lagrangian methods similar to those developed by our group for turbulent flows.

The goal is to provide a better physical understanding of multiphase flow in microscales and to develop macroscopic models that can be used in macroscopic simulations.

  Chiranth Srinivasan (Graduate student in Chemical Engineering)

Project : Turbulent transport modeling  

This project will utilize the LST method to investigate the development of new models for the turbulent Prandtl number in wall turbulence. It will also include the study of the effects of the velocity field on chemical reactions that take place in the flow field. Second order reactions will be the focus, and different types of fluids and reactions will be considered. 

  Linden Heflin (Graduate student in Chemical Engineering) and Carrie Street (Undergraduate student in Chemical Engineering)

Project : Blood flow in the renal artery 

It appears that hypertension in some individuals is caused by a pressure drop in the renal artery. This project will investigate whether such pressure drops are due to hydrodynamic reasons or not, and whether corrective action can be taken to adjust the pressure drop through the renal artery. Commercial software is used to simulate the flow in 3D models of the flow field.  The project is a collaboration with Prof. O’Rear.



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