University of Chester Student CFD Training

Menatech Limited recently provided six University of Chester chemical engineering placement students with an introduction to applied Computational Fluid Dynamics in order to demonstrate how it can be used to simulate real life chemical engineering problems. This included initial software training, simulation and comparison to existing university laboratory experiments, production of tutorials for future teaching and finally an application to a real-life problem.

All six students successfully completed the training provided by Menatech Limited and simulated the multiphase draining of a water tank which was previously the focus of the 1st year laboratory project. Tutorials were also produced to aid future teaching. With additional guidance by Professor Steve Wilkinson, Head of Chemical Engineering, the students then turned their attention to the continuum mechanics of an air lift reactor, a subject of current research by the department. Air lift reactors promote extremely gentle mixing with significantly reduced shear, this is a highly beneficial advantage when attempting to mix very delicate fluids and is a typical real-life chemical engineering problem. The results of the simulation compared well with those observed under experimental conditions.

The students also practised their presentation skills during a final feedback presentation to the department which indicated they had thoroughly enjoyed the placement and gained substantial knowledge of this branch of engineering in a short space of time.