An OpenFOAM®-Based Tool For Computational Modeling Of Aerosol Nucleation And Transport

Authored by  EM Frederix*, A Kuczaj, M Nordlund, C Winkelmann, I Zinovik, BJ Geurts*

Presented at EAC 2013     
* This author is not affiliated with PMI.


In the process of single-species homogeneous vapor condensation into aerosol, surface is created between liquid and vapor. The energy of formation of such surface limits the condensation of vapor from a supersaturated state. Nucleation, the mechanism of generation of embryo sites, or nuclei, on which vapor is able to condense, is an important process. Developing an understanding of this process is important, as it may lead to a considerable contribution to many engineering problems, as well as atmospheric and environmental science. In this work, we present an OpenFOAM®-based numerical simulation tool, which is capable of predicting aerosol formation using a two-moment representation of the aerosol and classical nucleation theory. We aim at developing a flexible utility, which enables researchers interested in various aerosol production-related applications to quickly study concepts like aerosol nucleation, condensation, diffusion and transport. We compare our numerical approach with the results of physical experiments, each using a laminar flow diffusion chamber (ref. [1, 2, 3]) with different species and/or carrier gasses. A good agreement between experimental and numerical results for the aerosol droplet number density is shown.