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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter October 31, 2013

Numerical Investigation of Combined Top and Lateral Blowing in a Peirce-Smith Converter

D. K. Chibwe, G. Akdogan and P. Taskinen

Abstract

Typical current operation of lateral-blown Peirce-Smith converters (PSCs) has the common phenomenon of splashing and slopping due to air injection. The splashing and wave motion in these converters cause metal losses and potential production lost time due to intermittent cleaning of the converter mouth and thus reduced process throughput. Understanding of the effect of combined top and lateral blowing could possibly lead to alternative technology advancement for increased process efficiency. In this study, computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations of conventional common practice (lateral blowing) and combined (top and lateral blowing) in a PSC were carried out, and results of flow variables (bath velocity, turbulence kinetic energy, etc.) were compared. The two-dimensional (2-D) and three-dimensional (3-D) simulations of the three-phase system (air–matte–slag) were executed utilizing a commercial CFD numerical software code, ANSYS FLUENT 14.0. These simulations were performed employing the volume of fluid and realizable turbulence models to account for multiphase and turbulent nature of the flow, respectively. Upon completion of the simulations, the results of the models were analysed and compared by means of density contour plots, velocity vector plots, turbulent kinetic energy vector plots, average turbulent kinetic energy, turbulent intensity contour plots and average matte bulk velocity. It was found that both blowing configuration and slag layer thickness have significant effects on mixing propagation, wave formation and splashing in the PSC as the results showed wave formation and splashing significantly being reduced by employing combined top- and lateral-blowing configurations.

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Published Online: 2013-10-31

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