Simulation Analysis of Thermal Mixing Characteristics of Fluids Flowing Through a Converging T-junction
Keywords:T-junction, thermal mixing, temperature fluctuation, turbulence model
Temperature fluctuation occurs while mixing of hot and cold fluids in a T-junction due to incomplete thermal mixing. This temperature fluctuation can produce thermal fatigue at the weld area of the T-junction. The present study aims to numerically investigate the thermal mixing characteristics of hot and cold fluids in a T-junction. The realizable k-ε turbulence model is used with natural gas as the working fluid. Temperature distribution, mixing quality, and intensity of temperature fluctuation are evaluated and compared along with the mixing outlet. The inlet temperature difference and branch to main pipe flowrate ratio have a direct influence on thermal mixing. The higher temperature difference can reduce the thermal mixing performance. Thermal mixing increases with the increase of branch to main pipe flowrate. The intensity of temperature fluctuation is found within a short distance from the intersecting point of the two inlets. With the increase of distance along with the mixing outlet, the frequency of temperature fluctuation decreases, and thermal mixing increases.