# Introduction to COMSOL. The Navier-Stokes Equations

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1 Flow Between Parallel Plates Modified from the COMSOL ChE Library module rev 10/13/08 Modified by Robert P. Hesketh, Chemical Engineering, Rowan University Fall 2008 Introduction to COMSOL The following flowchart gives the overall procedure for setting up a problem into COMSOL Multiphysics, solving the problem and then analyzing the information. 1. Read the problem statement 2. Select Equation(s) and coordinate system that you will be using. (e.g. momentum balance, energy balance etc.) 3. Enter constants 4. Draw Geometry 5. Specify Boundary Conditions for all boundaries 6. Create a mesh or grid by dividing the geometry into smaller elements. 7. Solve equations 8. Graph numerical results The Navier-Stokes Equations The Navier-Stokes are a special form of the momentum balance and are discussed in section 15.4 of de Nevers. The following assumptions are employed in their use: 1. The fluid has constant density 2. The flow is laminar throughout 3. The fluid is Newtonian 4. The 3-dimensional stresses in a flowing, constant-density Newtonian fljid have the same form as the 3-demensinoal stress in a solid body that obeys Hooke s law (perfectly elastic, isotropic solid) The Incompressible Navier-Stokes application mode in COMSOL is somewhat more general than this and is able to account for arbitrary variations in viscosity and small variations in density; say through the Boussinesq approximation. This section provides a summary of the participating equations and boundary conditions for one of the most commonly used physical descriptions used in mathematical modeling. EQUATIONS The equations in the Navier-Stokes application mode are defined by Equation 4-1 for a variable viscosity and constant density. The momentum balances and continuity equation form a nonlinear system of equations with three and four coupled equations in 2D and 3D, respectively. (4-1) 1

2 where η denotes the dynamic viscosity (M L -1 T -1 ) (e.g. Newtonian viscosity with units kg/(m s), u the velocity vector (L T -1 ), ρ the density of the fluid (M L -3 ), p the pressure (M L -1 T - 2 ) and F is a body force term (M L -2 T -2 ) such as gravity. The first equation is the momentum balance, and the second is the equation of continuity for incompressible fluids. Remember from your text that symbol,, is a mathematical operator. The gradient or grad of a scalar field such as pressure is defined as: p p p p = i + j + k Equation (C.6) x y z In addition the dot product of the symbol,, with another vector is called the divergence or div of a vector v. v v x y vz v = + + Equation (C.5) x y z For constant density fluids at steady-state the continuity equation which is a mass balance on a continuous fluid gives v v x y vz v = + + = 0 Equation 15.7 x y z The Navier-Stokes Equation (constant density and viscosity) for rectangular coordinates from the de Nevers book is given as: Dv v 2 ρ = ρ + ρ μ Dt t Where the substantial time derivative is defined as Dv v ρ = ρ + ρ( v v) Dt t ( v v) = p + ρg + v Equation

3 Boundary Conditions The boundary conditions can be any of a number described below. A summary table is given in Table 1: Summary of Common Boundary Conditions for Fluid Flow Boundary Boundary Condition Equation Use Wall No-slip (default) u = 0 Used to specify that the velocity at a wall is zero. Sliding Wall u = u Used for a moving wall. You w must specify the velocity of the wall. Fluid Inlet Fluid Outlet Axis of Symmetry Inflow/Outflow boundary condition of velocity Pressure, No viscous Stress u = nu 0 or u = u 0 p = p 0 and u u T n Velocity u = nu0 or u = u 0 Pressure, No viscous Stress Slip/Symmetry condition Outflow/Pressure boundary condition Normal flow/pressure or straight-out boundary condition p = p 0 and u u T n Used for a constant velocity with u=constant or a velocity specified by an equation such as 1. The unit vector n is normal to the surface For this condition the inflow of fluid must be perpendicular to the boundary Becareful not to overspecify For this condition the outflow of fluid must be perpendicular to the boundary u n = 0 This boundary condition states that there is no velocity perpendicular to an area or surface. This is used mainly in cases where there is symmetry. For example in pipe flow this is the boundary condition at r=0. p = Used when pressure is known p 0 u t = 0 and p = p 0 This is used for fully developed flow in which the flow is only perpendicular to the area. 3

4 More information about the Navier-Stokes Application Mode can be found in the Modeling Guide, Fluid Mechanics Chapter. To to Help, Help Desk (HTML/PDF). Choose Modeling Guide and then Fluid Mechanics. The following is a simple example of use of the Incompressible Navier-Stokes application mode in the Chemical Engineering Module. It will acquaint you with the different menus and operations, as well as provide a study of developing laminar flow. 4

5 Steady-State Flow Between Parallel Plates In this problem you will model the steady-state flow of a fluid that is being pumped through 2 vertical plates, with infinite width and having a spacing of 0.02 m as shown in the adjacent figure. The vertical direction coordinate is y and the horizontal direction coordinate is x. The fluid is not water and it has a uniform inlet velocity of m/s, viscosity of 0.01 kg/(m s) and density of 1000 kg/m 3. The effect of gravity will be ignored for this problem. (The usual practice with accounting for gravity in pump problems is to combine it into the pressure term). 1. The initial part of this problem will be to specify a uniform velocity of 0.02 m/s at the entrance of the plates and determine a velocity profile. This problem will show a uniform velocity profile that transitions into fully developed flow which is a parabolic velocity profile. Formulate a momentum balance for this problem and obtain the analytical solution for the velocity profile. 2. In the second part of this problem you will specify a pressure drop and then calculate a velocity profile. In this case the velocity profile will be fully developed from the start of the geometry. Modeling using the Graphical User Interface 1. Start COMSOL Multiphysics 2. In the Model Navigator, click the New page 3. Select the 2-dimension problem set of equations Number of dimensions 4. Select Chemical Engineering Module, Momentum Transport, Incompressible Navier-Stokes, Steady-state analysis 5. Take note of the variables: u, v and ρ. The variable u is in the x direction and the variable v is in the y direction for this 2- diemsional problem. 6. Click OK. Variables used u, v and ρ. y x 5

6 Options and Settings The first step in the modeling process is to create a temporary database for the input data. The module suggests units in SI and expects you to use consistent set of units. In this case, all units are SI units. Define the following constants in the Constants dialog box in the Option menu. Note this is not water and it has a uniform inlet velocity of m/s, viscosity of 0.01 kg/(m s) and density of 1000 kg/m 3. Table 2: Constants NAME EXPRESSION rho 1e3 eta 1e-2 v0 2e-2 Geometry Modeling (Create Parallel Plates) 1. Press the Shift key and click the Rectangle/Square button to bring up the menu for the Rectangle/Square. 2. Type the values shown in the adjacent figure for the rectangle dimensions. 3. 2e-2 Click the Zoom Extents button in the Main toolbar. 4. Now you have created a domain that has 4 boundaries. Comsol labels as subdomains the 4 boundaries and the interior of the rectangle. 6

7 Subdomain Settings This refers to inside the rectangle that should have a designation of R1. You will now specify the properties of the fluid inside the four boundaries or of the subdomain. Select Subdomain Settings from the Physics menu. Define the physical properties of the fluid, in this case viscosity and density, according to the image with heading Subdomain Settnigs Incompressible Navier- Stokes (chns) given below. You must type in the same variable names as was given in Table 2. The borders are boundaries (one type of subdomain) This is what is active Rectangle. The pink area is the subdomain for the interior. This is the fluid in our problem. This is the steadystate constant density mass balance This is the steady-state momentum balance Gravity term Rate of Momen tum flux Pressure Shear Stress term 7

8 Boundary Conditions This is the selected boundary 1 which is a wall This is where you specify the boundary condition Select Boundary Settings from the Physics menu and enter the boundary conditions according to the following table: BOUNDARY 1,4 2 3 Boundary condition Wall No-slip Inflow/Outflow velocity U 0 v0 P 0 0 Outlet Pressure, no viscous stress This is the equation of the condition for boundary 2. This states that the velocity is normal to the boundary 8

9 This is the equation of the condition for boundary 3 which is the outlet boundary. This states that the velocity is normal to the boundary Why do you have to specify a boundary condition for the outlet? Remember that COMSOL uses a finite element method to obtain numerical results. This means that the solution is a set of numbers. When we integrated the equation we came up with another equation. In this regard the pressure derivative is an additional equation and requires an additional specification. This specification is to set the outlet pressure to 0 Pa gauge. Mesh Generation Select the mesh generation button or select Mesh and then Initialize Mesh. Later you can return to this to either make the mesh size smaller (Refine Mesh) for the entire subdomain (rectangle) or select a small portion of the subdomain where the velocity is changing rapidly and make that mesh size smaller. Remember the more elements the longer it will take the computer to solve the problem. Refine entire Mesh Mesh Button Mesh Button Refine only the selection highlighted by the mouse 9

10 Computing the Solution Click the Solve button in the Main toolbar. Solve Button Postprocessing and Visualization The default figure shows the velocity field, which is the absolute value of the velocity vector. In this graph notice that the flow transitions from a uniform velocity at y=0 and a full developed velocity profile. Determine at what y distance the velocity profile can be considered fully developed. Explain your answer. 10

11 Add arrows showing the magnitude and direction of the velocity. Do the following 1. Select Postprocessing 2. Plot Parameters 3. Choose the Arrow tab 4. Click on Arrow Plot. 5. Or just click on the Arrow plot box 11

12 It is also possible to create cross-sectional plots of the velocity along horizontal lines at different positions along the channel. 1. Select Postprocessing 2. Select Cross-Section Plot Parameters 3. Select Line/Extrusion plot as Plot type. 4. Click the Line/Extrusion tab. 5. The y-axis data is by default set to Velocity field. 6. Select x as the x-axis data from the drop down menu. 7. Set the Cross-section line data according to the table below: PROPERTY VALUE x0-1e-2 x1 1e-2 y0 0 y Select the Multiple parallel lines check box. 9. Select the Vector with distances button and type linspace(0.00,0.05,9) in the Vector with distances edit field. The linspace command will create an equidistant vector from 0.00 m to 0.05 m with 9 steps. 10. Select Line Settings and click on the Legend box 11. Go back to the General tab 12. Click on Title/Axis ButtonAdd a title: Velocity Profile: Uniform Inlet Velocity 13. Click OK. 12

13 This gives a plot in which velocity is on the y axis and the width of the plate is on the x-axis. Each curve starting with the blue line corresponds to a given distance in the flow direction (y direction). Notice the appearance of the horizontal red lines on the original post process contour solution plot shown above. These lines are the 9 cross sections that were requested. The resulting plot shows how the velocity profile develops along the main direction of the flow. At the outlet, we can see that the flow appears nearly to be fully developed and is a parabolic velocity profile. To refine the solution at the initial boundary, you can refine the mesh and then solve again. The plot below was produced by selecting the button refine selection and then dragging your mouse over the mesh in the entrance region of the slot. Also if you wish to visually compare plots you need to Notice how the problem with the discontinuity reduces. 13

14 Exporting data to excel You can export this data to excel in a number of ways. From the postprocessing user interface you can save the data to a text file or you can use the commands File>Export>Postprocessing Data. Edit Plot Copy Plot Data to an ascii text Copy Plot Figure 1. Make an additional plot in excel comparing the analytical solution to the fully developed flow profile in this solution. You will only need one of the COMSOL solutions. Which solution plotted is a fully developed solution? (e.g. at what y value is the flow fully developed?) 2. Once you have decided what should be the fully developed flow solution, then make a second plot by first selecting a New figure and clicking the box Keep current plot. For this new plot you should only plot the fully developed flow profile. Go the the Line/Extrusion tab and remove the multiple parallel lines check mark and specify the y value. The y value plotted with the numbers given in the image on this page would be the inlet flow velocity (y0=0 and y1=0). This is not the fully developed flow profile! 3. Exporting the Current COMSOL Plot to a File There are several methods to export the data to a text file that can be imported into a spreadsheet. I recommend using the short cut button. The short cut button is located on the Figure 1 plot of Comsol shown above. Save this data as a text file and then import it into a spreadsheet. Remove multiple lines Choose a value for y. The values of y0 and y1 must be the same value. 14

15 4. Open the text file. The data will be in the following form: x,y coordinates for each time that is given in the legend of the Comsol Figure 1 plot. You will need to open this data with an excel spreadsheet. Make sure you are searching for a *.txt file in the Files of type: line. 5. Next a Text Import Wizard will open. Select fixed width and then Next. Check to see that the data is being imported in two columns by scrolling down with the scroll bar and then press Finish. First column (Column A) are the x coordinates. These should start at m and end at 0.01 m The second column contains the velocity values. The maximum velocity is at m/s in this This is the last velocity value at 0.01 m. Notice that it is not zero because of numerical errors After the data are given information on the number of elements used. We do not use this for the plot 6. You should now have 2 columns of data in the spreadsheet. The data in the column A is the distance coordinate in meters and the data in column B is the velocity in m/s. If you are exporting more than one data set, (which you should not do for this exercise but may do in later problems) then each data set corresponds to a new value of y in your Comsol plot. 15

16 Problem 2: Fully developed flow between 2 parallel plates In this problem we will assume that the flow is fully developed at the inlet of the volume. You will then specify the inlet pressure and obtain a velocity profile. To do this you will need to calculate the pressure drop by hand. The solution given in many text books for this 2 2 δ dp problem is x v y = 1 2μ dy δ The maximum velocity is given as 2 δ dp v y max = which occurs at the center of the 2 μ dy channel x = 0. Using the maximum velocity of the fully developed flow from your previous simulations and physical properties and dimensions calculate the pressure drop. Use this value of pressure to specify the inlet boundary condition. Remember to convert pressure drop into pressure. For the outlet boundary condition there is a special setting: Adjust your pressure drop for a distance of 1.05 m and then use a gauge pressure with the outlet pressure at zero Since this is not a fully developed flow for the entire channel you should examine where the flow is fully developed. 16

17 Plot the pressure profile using the surface plot pressure and a Cross section plot. Explain why there is a difference between the finite element method solution (COMSOL) and the analytical solution. Comment on why this plot is not a straight line. 17

18 If you wanted a fully developed flow entering the inlet and leaving the outlet then you would need to change you inlet boundary condition and recalculate your needed inlet pressure. 18

19 Laminar Flow Falling film Now solve a problem using a gravity term. In this case you will simulate a vertical plate with liquid flowing down the plate. You have no applied pressure terms, but you will use a force term. Compare your simulation to an analytical solution that you obtain from first principles using an excel plot. Show this derivation. Geometry Change your geometry so that the film thickness is 0.002m and the length of the plate is 0.01 m. Set the free film at x = 0 and the wall at x = m. Use the Draw mode button which is a triangle and pencil. Then double click on the figure and make the rectangle smaller. Also place the orgin (corner of the rectangle) at point 0,0. Mesh Re-grid your new geometry by first selecting the Mesh button, then initialize the mesh and then perform at least one additional Mesh refinement. Second initialize mesh Third refine entire mesh Select Meshing Subdomain Settings The volume force vector, F = (F x, F y, F z), describes a distributed force field such as gravity. The unit of the volume force is force/volume. In this model you will need a force per area term which operates in the negative y-direction. Add a g=9.81 m/s 2 to your constants. Your flow will now be downward which is opposed to the y-direction 19

20 Boundary Conditions The following boundary conditions will result in a fully developed flow from the inlet to the outlet. Select Boundary Settings from the Physics menu and enter the boundary conditions according to the following table: BOUNDARY Symmetry Boundary condition Boundary or Wall with slip (This sets the stress at the liquid/air interface to zero) Stress Normal stress, normal flow with f 0 =0 f 0 =0 Stress Normal stress, normal flow with No-slip 20

21 To make your cross section plot and excel plot use the above as a guide. 21

22 Submit: 1. Derivations 1.1. of velocity profile for flow between parallel plates 1.2. of velocity profile for falling film 2. Cross Section Plots: 2.1. Developing flow between parallel plates 2.2. Fully Developed flow between parallel plates 2.3. Falling Film 3. Contour Plots (Basic Solution) Add arrows on top of plot to signify velocity 3.1. Developing flow between parallel plates 3.2. Fully Developed flow between parallel plates 3.3. Falling Film 4. Excel Plots: 4.1. comparison of Fully Developed flow between parallel plates with analytical Solution 4.2. comparison of falling film velocity profile with analytical solution. 5. Answers 5.1. Determine at what y distance the velocity profile can be considered fully developed for the flow between 2 parallel plates with uniform inlet velocity. Explain your answer pressure drop calculation for fully developed flow 5.3. Comment on comparison between analytical and simulated results in the two fully developed flow models. Fun for experts and those who finish early! Laminar Flow Between Horizontal Plates with One Plate Moving Now have the motion of the fluid created by the movement of one plate. Set the 2 boundary conditions for the entrance and exit to give the fully developed flow solution ( Normal Flow/Pressure, with pressure equal to zero). You don t have to change the geometry. Just exclude gravity from any of the model terms. (you already have done this). Use the fully developed boundary condition. Please note that you are solving a linear equation. Plot: Cross section plot 22

CM 3110 COMSOL INSTRUCTIONS Faith Morrison and Maria Tafur Department of Chemical Engineering Michigan Technological University, Houghton, MI USA 22 November 2012 Zhichao Wang edits 21 November 2013 revised

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