Turbulence modeling for supercritical fluid flows

Supercritical fluids have the high potential to change the paradigm in solar power harvesting. Supercritical fluids used in closed loop Brayton cycles can lead to the development of highly efficient and power-dense plants in concentrated power systems. Efficient design of these systems require a fundamental understanding of the turbulent heat transfer characteristics of these fluids. However, turbulent flows at supercritical conditions are extremely complex and their modeling requirements are not well understood. The extreme thermophysical property variations of fluids close to the critical point alter the conventional behavior of turbulence. 

The student will:

  1. review the basics of turbulence modeling
  2. use a fortran code to perform simulations for heat transfer to fluids in pipes 
  3. analyze the failure of current models to predict the heat transfer and consequently try to improve the them

This project is best suited to students who have enthusiasm for computer simulations and numerical analysis.


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