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Documentation

Validation Case: Centrifugal Pump Curve Subsonic

This validation case belongs to fluid dynamics and aims to validate the following parameters of a centrifugal pump. The SimScale Subsonic solver was used to generate these results.

  • Pressure drop [\(Pa\)]
  • Power [\(W\)]

The results of SimScale are compared with the results of the study by WANG Xiu-yong and WANG Can-xing entitled “Performance Prediction of Centrifugal Pump Based on the Method of Numerical Simulation.”\(^1\).

Geometry

The CAD model used in this validation case is a centrifugal pump, shown below:

Pump Validation Subsonic Geometry Body
Figure 1: Centrifugal Pump geometry
Pump Validation Subsonic Geometry Blades
Figure 2: Pump Blade geometry

The dimensions of the centrifugal pump are listed in Table 1:

DimensionValue \([m]\)
Upstream Length0.041
Downstream Length0.05
Inlet Diameter0.075
Outlet Diameter0.065
Pump Inside Diameter0.075
Pump Outside Diameter0.137
Table 1: Centrifugal pump dimensions

Analysis Type and Mesh

Analysis Type: Steady-state and Transient, Subsonic with K-Epsilon turbulence model

Mesh and Element Types:

The mesh was created with SimScale’s Subsonic Cartesian mesh. The automated mesher was used with increasing fineness for the global mesh, without the use of specific region refinements.

Mesh Sensitivity

The Subsonic meshing algorithm with hexahedral cells was used to generate the mesh. The mesh sensitivity study has been performed for the flow rate of 30 \( \frac{m^3}{h} \) using the automated mesh function with increasing fineness. The results of the sensitivity study can be seen in Figure 3:

mesh sensitivity study
Figure 3: Mesh sensitivity study results.

Based on the mesh sensitivity study the automated mesh at level 4 was selected to perform the simulations for the whole operating range of the pump. The mesh for the pump can be seen in Figure 4:

Pump Validation Subsonic Mesh Geometry
Figure 4: Mesh within the flow domain with fineness level 4.

Simulation Setup

Three different volumetric flow rates were simulated. Constant pressure was set at the inlet and for all three volumetric flow rates at the outlet, the rotational speed of the pump was kept constant. The boundary conditions set for the fluid and the pump can be seen in Figure 5 and Table 2 respectively.

Fluid:

  • Water
    • Kinematic viscosity \((\nu)\): 9.3379e-7 \(\frac{m^2}{s}\)
    • Desity \((\rho)\): 997.33\(\frac{kg}{m^3}\)

Boundary Conditions:

Pump Validation Subsonic Boundary Conditions
Figure 5: Boundary condition overview.
Boundary ConditionValue
Velocity Outlet(30, 50, 60) \( [\frac{m^3}{h}] \)
Totalt Pressure Inlet1.013e+5 \([Pa]\)
No-slip wallPump housing wall surfaces
Rotation Speed MRF Zone303.7 \([\frac{rad}{s}]\)
Table 2: Boundary conditions for the pump analysis.

Result Comparison

To compare the results obtained with SimScale with the experiment of WANG Xiu-yong and WANG Can-xing \(^1\), the pressure difference across the pump and the power consumption of the pump are measured.

pressure drop versus flow rate for subsonic centrifugal pump
Figure 6: Pressure Head comparison of results obtained by SimScale and the reference.
power versus flow rate for subsonic centrifugal pump
Figure 7: Power comparison of results obtained by SimScale and the reference

Result Comparison

The deviation of the results obtained with SimScale compared to the results obtained by WANG Xiu-yong and WANG Can-xing is shown in Figures 8 and 9. The deviation is small for all volumetric flow rates. For the pressure difference, the steady-state approach provides better accuracy, while the transient solution has a smaller deviation in the prediction of the power.

pressure drop versus flow rate deviation  for subsonic centrifugal pump
Figure 8: Pressure deviation of SimScale results in comparison to the experimental data.
power versus flow rate deviation for subsonic centrifugal pump
Figure 9: Power deviation of SimScale results in comparison to the experimental data.

The flow contours inside the pump for three different flow rates as observed in our online post-processor:

Pump Validation Subsonic cutting_plane
Figure 10: Velocity magnitude contours of the pump for various volumetric flow rates.

Note

If you still encounter problems validating you simulation, then please post the issue on our forum or contact us.

Last updated: June 29th, 2022

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