Flow field investigation in a photocatalytic reactor for air treatment (Photo-CREC-air)

Santiago Romero-Vargas Castrillon, Hadeel Ibrahim, Hugo I de Lasa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The aerodynamic behavior of a photocatalytic reactor for air treatment, Photo-CREC–air, with demonstrated high quantum efficiency performance, is examined using CFX-5.7.1. Photo-CREC–air consists of a venturi section that features low pressure drop and uniform illumination of the photocatalyst, resulting in high oxidation quantum efficiencies. The numerical simulations allowed the identification of several design issues in the original Photo-CREC–air unit, which include extensive boundary layer separation close to the photocatalyst support and regions of flow recirculation that render ca. 77% of the support surface area inactive. The simulations reveal that this issue could be addressed by replacing the wire-mesh basket sidewalls with perforated plates. This modification causes an increase in the pressure drop downstream of the support and achieves significant uniformization of the mass flow and air–photocatalyst contact time distributions.

A modified Photo-CREC–air design is also presented and studied using CFX-5.7.1. This modified design is envisaged with the objective of improving UV-irradiation uniformity, an issue that is not completely addressed in the original design due to the shape of the windows and divergent section. CFD simulations reveal that, although the flow field is uniform, mass flow and contact time distributions are not. Nonetheless, this problem is addressed by increasing the pressure drop downstream of the support through the addition of a region modeled as a perforated plate. The simulations reveal that the mass flow and contact time distributions are significantly uniformized once this modification is implemented.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3343-3361
JournalChemical Engineering Science
Volume 61
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 3 Feb 2006

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Flow field investigation in a photocatalytic reactor for air treatment (Photo-CREC-air)'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this