Modeling Surface Reactions in Porous Media and Reactive Pellet Beds

Edmund Dickinson October 10, 2017

In a previous blog post, we discussed why surfaces are special in chemical reactors. In this blog post, we’ll see how surface area is maximized in reactor structures such as pellet beds, and how we can simply and accurately simulate fixed-bed reactors in spite of their local geometric complexity and the importance of microscopic diffusion.

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Caty Fairclough October 6, 2017

George Westinghouse was a prolific inventor who helped shape how we use electricity in America and throughout the world. Among his notable achievements, he improved the safety of trains and furthered the acceptance and use of alternating current (AC) as a standard way to supply electricity. Throughout his life, Westinghouse started many companies and fostered strong ties to other great thinkers. As today is his birthday, we’d like to celebrate his life and accomplishments.

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Caty Fairclough October 4, 2017

Kelvin probes provide a nondestructive and contact-free method of measuring the work function differences of various material combinations. These probes can have a variety of designs, including different tip shapes, lengths, and radii. To find an optimal design while minimizing the need for extensive testing, one group of researchers used the COMSOL Multiphysics® software. Here’s what they found…

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Guest Linus Fagerberg October 3, 2017

Guest blogger Linus Fagerberg from Lightness by Design picks up where he left off in his previous blog post to discuss how radiated sound depends on the shell thickness of a muffler. Here, we discuss different entities for gauging the performance of mufflers. One important parameter is the thickness of the muffler’s casing and how this affects its performance. By performing acoustic-structure interaction simulations, we can see how shell thickness affects muffler performance.

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Caty Fairclough September 29, 2017

Fusion energy is 30 years away — and always will be. The joke certainly rings true for inertial fusion energy (IFE), which must overcome a number of obstacles before it can become a reality. For example, the current methods for creating IFE targets cannot meet the predicted demand and cost requirements. To solve this problem, researchers designed a new microfluidics method that could address these production bottleneck issues while complying with the strict geometrical requirements of IFE target design.

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Andrew Young September 27, 2017

When simulating flow in porous media, it can be efficient to simplify the geometric complexity of the real porous material using a homogenized macroscale approach. But what if we don’t know what the effective macroscopic properties are? Here, we look at how to extract the macroscopic flow properties of porosity and permeability from a fully resolved microscale submodel.

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Caty Fairclough September 21, 2017

Have you ever plugged one too many devices into an electrical circuit? This can overload the circuit and damage its components. To avoid this issue, many homes have devices like electric switch circuit breakers to interrupt the current when a critical current is reached. Other types of circuit breakers are used to prevent issues in high-voltage situations, like citywide power lines. In this blog post, we discuss using simulation to study a class of heavy-duty circuit breakers: magnetic power switches.

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Hanna Gothäll September 20, 2017

Irregular shapes can come in several different formats. For example, we have previously discussed importing STL files and NASTRAN® meshes into the COMSOL Multiphysics® software. These formats are common when working with scanned biological data. In this blog series, we will look at different ways of handling irregular shapes in COMSOL Multiphysics.

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Uttam Pal September 19, 2017

In 1870, an audience watched as a stage was set with two buckets, one on top of the other. Due to a small hole in the upper bucket, water poured into the lower bucket, bending as it did so. To the audience’s amazement, sunlight followed the bend of water — a phenomenon later termed total internal reflection. The performer on stage, John Tyndall, was one of the many scientists who tried to control the most visible form of energy: light.

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Bridget Paulus September 18, 2017

Maintaining an even temperature for buildings in hot climates often requires a lot of energy. One option for improving thermal performance is by including phase change materials (PCMs) in parts of the building. To study the effectiveness of PCMs in regulating temperature, researchers used the COMSOL Multiphysics® software to model a novel plaster that includes a PCM. They then analyzed the thermal performance of the PCM-enhanced plaster and compared the results with a reference plaster.

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Aditi Karandikar September 15, 2017

Sir Mokshagundam Visvesvaraya (also known as Sir M.V.) was perhaps the most influential engineer in the history of contemporary India. A scholar and statesman, he served as the diwan of Mysore and was instrumental in the development of the princely state. Visvesvaraya was knighted as a knight commander of the British Indian Empire to honor his contributions to society. To celebrate the anniversary of his birthday, let’s take a look at some of Sir Mokshagundam Visvesvaraya’s major accomplishments.

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