The objective of this proposal is the development of a well-tested, generic design procedure for spray drying facilities based on state of the art computational fluid dynamics (CFD) calculations with novel elements to describe agglomeration. The procedure will form the basis for spray facilities to be optimised in terms of more compact (intensified) plant, greater energy efficiency and higher product yield. The calculations will be evaluated by simultaneous spatially and temporally resolved measurements of size, velocity, flux and concentration of sprays, some of which will be obtained in industrial scale plant. A unique and innovative laser technique (shadow Doppler anemometer) appropriate to the irregularly-shaped particles - which cannot be sized with spatial precision in any other way - found in spray dryers will be used. The performance of this new instrument will be thoroughly established by reference to advanced calculations of light scattering. The industrial relevance and interest in the resulting design procedure is demonstrated and assured through project co-ordination by a major manufacturer of spray dryers and the results will benefit from the experience of another industrial partner which is a major end-user: both have extensive experience of measurements and are users of CFD packages.
The specific objectives are:
(i) to develop an innovative mathematical model of particle agglomeration; (ii) to incorporate (i) into a research, non-commercial CFD code; (iii) to evaluate the accuracy of an innovative instrument for the pointwise, time-resolved measurement of particle size and velocity of irregular particles using light scattering programs;
(iv) to construct the instrument of (iii) and use it to measure in model and full-scale spray dryers;
(v) to evaluate the code in (ii) by means of the measurements of (iv) and use the code to design dryers which promote process intensification and energy efficiency;
(vi) to exploit the results, the performance of the commercial CFD codes will be assessed by reference to (ii), deficiencies identified and improvements adopted by industry.
(vii) The improved codes will be used, in conjunction with the experimental knowledge, as a new improved design procedure for spray drying equipment that will be more energy efficient current best practice.
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts
76801 St Etienne Du Rouvray
MK43 0AL Cranfield - Bedfordshire
SW7 2BX London