Application of Inhomogeneous Discrete Method to the Simulation of Transport, Agglomeration, and Removal of Oxide Inclusions in a Gas-Stirred Ladle
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The behavior of oxide inclusions in a gas-stirred ladle is characterized by a wide inclusion size distribution that evolves continuously owing to their transport, aggregation, and removal. Due to the high temperature and opacity of the ladle, a computational fluid dynamics-based method coupled with a suitable population balance algorithm is required to analyze this evolution process. In this work, the inhomogeneous discrete method is applied to solve the population balance equations associated with the behavior of Al2O3 inclusions in a gas-stirred ladle, and the effect of the number of subphases is evaluated. The calculated flow and mixing characteristics of molten steel and the size distribution of inclusions in the ladle agree well with measured values reported in literature. The results indicate that the inclusion size distribution for one, two, and three subphases differs from that obtained for four and five subphases, while the refinement from four to five subphases produces a similar distribution, hence use of the inhomogeneous discrete method with four subphases is suggested to study the behavior of inclusions in a gas-stirred ladle.
The authors are grateful for financial support from the Science and Technology Research Program of Chongqing Municipal Education Commission (Grant No. KJQN201801413) and the Science and Technology Program of Fuling Science and Technology Commission (Grant No. FLKJ, 2018BBA3043). The Guangxi Natural Science Foundation (Grant No. 2017GXNSFBA198128).
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