Investigation of volume diffusion hydrodynamics : application to tight porous media
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Various engineering problems imply rarefied gas flows that rely in the transition and free molecular regimes, e.g., micro and nano devices. The recent expansion of shale gas production where rarefied conditions are found in reservoirs exposed another area of application with a major importance. Continuum based methods like standard Navier- Stokes equations break down in the transition regime and free molecular regime. In order to model such flows discrete methods are usually adopted. Boltzmann equation can theoretically be used to simulate rarefied gas flows. However, complexity of its collision integral limits its applications mostly to simple cases (i.e., one dimension problems). The direct simulation Monte Carlo method which mimics the Boltzmann equation is the dominant method for simulating rarefied gas flows. It has been tested in several engineering problems, ranging from nano scale flow to re-entry vehicles with very consistent results in comparison with experimental data and analytical solutions. Its computational cost is, however, enormous for complex cases. Observations from Crookes radiometer inspired extending the continuum methods so that they could capture non-equilibrium phenomena in small scales. In the present thesis two different hydrodynamic model are presented. The first one is based on the Korteweg expression and the second one is called “Bi-velocity”. Firstly, the two models are presented in their mathematical forms. The proposed models are then developed in open-source computational fluid dynamics solvers. The models are tested and benchmarked in different rarefied gas flows problems in the whole range of Knudsen number. We used problems that are found in micro and nano systems and tight porous media. Results from the hydrodynamic models are compared against experimental data where available and the direct simulation Monte Carlo method. The two extended hydrodynamic models show improved results in comparison with standard Navier-Stokes.