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Monte Carlo simulation of aerosol evolution in a planar mixing layer

Kun Zhou (The State Key Laboratory of Refractories and Metallurgy, Wuhan University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, China)
Zhu He (The State Key Laboratory of Refractories and Metallurgy, Wuhan University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, China)

International Journal of Numerical Methods for Heat & Fluid Flow

ISSN: 0961-5539

Article publication date: 28 October 2014

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate aerosol evolution in a planar mixing layer from a Lagrangian point of view. After using Monte Carlo (MC) method to simulate the evolution of aerosol dynamics along particles trajectories, the particles size distributions are obtained, which are unavailable in mostly used methods of moments.

Design/methodology/approach

Nucleation and growth of dibutyl phthalate (DBP) particles are simulated using the quadrature method of moments in a planar mixing layer, where a fast hot stream with DBP vapor is mixing with a slow cool stream without vapor. Trajectories of aerosol particles are recorded. MC method is used to simulate the aerosol evolution along trajectories.

Findings

Investigation on aerosol evolution along the trajectories prompts to classify these trajectories into three groups: first, trajectories away from the active nucleation zone; second, trajectories starting from the active nucleation zone; and third, trajectories crossing over the active nucleation zone. Particle size distributions (psds) along selected representative trajectories are investigated. The psd evolution exhibits interesting behavior due to the synthetic effects of nucleation and condensation. Condensation growth tends to narrow down the psd, and form a sharp front on the side of big particle size. Nucleation is able to broaden the psd through generating the smallest particles. The duration and strength of nucleation have significant effect on the shape of psd.

Originality/value

As far as the authors knowledge, it is the first simulation of aerosol evolution that takes a Lagrangian point of view, and uses MC simulation along particles trajectories to provide the particles size distribution.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The author KZ would like to thank the help from F. Bisetti and A. Attili in KAUST. The program codes for the Lagrangian trajectories are implemented by A. Attili. The work is supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 11402179, 51404176).

Citation

Zhou, K. and He, Z. (2014), "Monte Carlo simulation of aerosol evolution in a planar mixing layer", International Journal of Numerical Methods for Heat & Fluid Flow, Vol. 24 No. 8, pp. 1769-1781. https://doi.org/10.1108/HFF-04-2013-0123

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2014, Emerald Group Publishing Limited