Flow, Turbulence and Combustion

, Volume 102, Issue 1, pp 221–234 | Cite as

Computational Study of the Velocity Fields and Pressure Differential in a Reynolds-Number-Sensitive Fluidic Resistor

  • Charles Farbos de LuzanEmail author
  • Rodrigo Villalva
  • Frederic Felten
  • Ephraim Gutmark


In the field of flow control, autonomously regulated valves that exclude any moving parts are extremely reliable, yet research on these devices is sparse. Aiming toward better understanding of their hydrodynamics, our study used a three-dimensional (3D) computational fluid dynamics (CFD) model to describe the velocity fields and pressure differentials in a fluidic device with no moving components and two tangential inlet nozzles that induced swirl within a circular cavity. Specifically, flows at high Reynolds number values (for which inertia dominates) followed the tangential path and resulted in higher pressure loss because of induced rotation within the circular cavity. Flows at lower Reynolds number values followed the pressure gradient toward the outlet and exited the tangential path via radial channels, lowering the overall pressure loss. The distribution of the flow through the various radial passages was calculated for different regimens and correlated to the Reynolds numbers. The observed streamlines and pressure differential trend corroborated the design intent of the Reynolds-Number-Sensitive Fluidic Resistor (RNSFR), which intends to separate different fluids based on their viscosity. Particle image velocimetry (PIV) measurements were performed to validate the computations.


Flow Control Viscosity Fluidic resistor Valve Autonomous 



The author would like to thank the financial and technical support from Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. Additional appreciation is extended to the Ohio Supercomputer Center for their technical support.

Funding Information

This study was funded by Halliburton Energy Services, Inc.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interests

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


  1. 1.
    Zobel, R.: Experiments on a hydraulic reversing elbow. Mitt. Hydr. Inst. Munich. 8, 1–47 (1936)Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Tesar, V.: Fluidic Control of Molten Metal Flow. 43Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Tesar, V., Hung, C.H., Zimmerman, W.B.: No-moving-part hybrid-synthetic jet actuator. Sensors Actuators A Phys. 125, 159–169 (2006). CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Scanlon, T., Wilson, P., Priestman, G., Tippetts, J.: Development of a novel flow control device for limiting the efflux of air through a failed pipe. In: ASME Turbo Expo 2009: Power for Land, Sea, and Air, pp. 1217–1227 (2009)Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Tesar, V.: Extremely simple pressure regulator–computation studies. Chem. Eng. J. 155, 361–370 (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Rietema, K., Krajenbrink, H.J.: Theoretical derivation of tangential velocity profiles in a flat vortex chamber-influence of turbulence and wall friction. Appl. Sci. Res. 8, 177–197 (1959). CrossRefzbMATHGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Henke, R.W.: Application of Fluidics. Ind. Gen. Appl. IEEE Trans IGA-4, 490–500 (1968)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Tanney, J.W.: Fluidics. Prog. Aerosp. Sci. 10, 401–509 (1970)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Dykstra, J.D., Fripp, M.L., Hamid, S.: Flow path control based on fluid characteristics to thereby variably resist flow in a subterranean well (2012)Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Dykstra, J.D., Fripp, M.L., Holderman, L.W.: Variable flow restrictor for use in a subterranean well (2013)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Fripp, M., Zhao, L., Least, B., et al.: The theory of a fluidic diode autonomous inflow control device. In: SPE Middle East intelligent energy conference and exhibition (2013)Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Greci, S., Least, B., Tayloe, G., et al.: Testing results: erosion testing confirms the reliability of the fluidic diode type autonomous inflow control device. In: Abu Dhabi international petroleum exhibition and conference (2014)Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Zeng, Q., Wang, Z., Wang, X., Wei, J., Zhang, Q., Yang, G.: A novel autonomous inflow control device design and its performance prediction. J. Pet. Sci. Eng. 126, 35–47 (2015)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Reba, I.: Applications of the Coanda effect. Sci. Am. 214, 84–92 (1966)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Oh, K.W., Ahn, C.H.: A review of microvalves. J. Micromech. Microeng 16, R13 (2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Wileman, A., Least, B., Greci, S., Ufford, A., et al.: Fluidic diode autonomous inflow control device range 3B-oil, water, and gas flow performance testing. In: SPE Kuwait oil and gas show and conference (2013)Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Ansys Inc.: Fluent User Guide. v. 15.0 (2013)Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Shih, T.-H., Liou, W.W., Shabbir, A., Yang, Z., Zhu, J.: A new k-epsilon eddy viscosity model for high Reynolds number turbulent flows: Model development and validation. NASA STI/Recon Tech. Rep. 95, 11442 (1994)Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Kulkarni, A.A., Ranade, V.V., Rajeev, R., Koganti, S.B.: CFD simulation of flow in vortex diodes. AIChE J. 54, 1139–1152 (2008). CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Ansys Inc.: Fluent Theory Guide. v. 15.0 (2013)Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Hreiz, R., Gentric, C., Midoux, N.: Numerical investigation of swirling flow in cylindrical cyclones. Chem. Eng. Res. Des. 89, 2521–2539 (2011). CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Roache, P.J.: Perspective: a method for uniform reporting of grid refinement studies. Trans. Soc. Mech. Eng. J. Fluids Eng. 116, 405 (1994)Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    Least, B., Greci, S., Burkey, R.C., Ufford, A., Wilemon, A., et al.: Autonomous ICD single phase testing. In: SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition (2012)Google Scholar
  24. 24.

Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Aerospace Engineering and Engineering MechanicsUniversity of Cincinnati (UC)CincinnatiUSA
  2. 2.Neurosensory Disorders Center at UC Gardner Neuroscience InstituteCincinnatiUSA
  3. 3.Department of Otolaryngology Head and Neck SurgeryUniversity of Cincinnati College of MedicineCincinnatiUSA
  4. 4.HalliburtonCarrolltonUSA

Personalised recommendations