Experimental and Computational Multiphase Flow

Article Title

Computational fluid dynamic analysis for investigating the influence of pipe curvature on erosion rate prediction during crude oil production


rate of erosion, pipe curvature, pipe elbow, computational fluid dynamics, presence of solid particles


The flow dynamics in pipes is a very complex system because it is largely affected by flow conditions. The transport of crude oil in pipelines within unconsolidated petroleum reservoirs is associated with presence of solid particles. These particles are often transported as dispersed phases during crude oil production and are therefore detrimental to the pipe surface integrity. This could lead to the occurrences of crevice corrosion due to pipe erosion. In relation to the above discussion, this paper is aimed at analyzing crude oil dynamics during flow through pipeline and identifying erosion hotspot for different pipe elbow curvatures. Reynolds Averaging Navier-Stokes (RANS) and Particle Tracing Modeling (PTM) approach were used. The focus is to simulate fluid dynamics and particle tracing, respectively. Post-processed results revealed that the fluid velocity magnitude was relatively high at the region with minimum curvature radius. The maximum static pressure and turbulence dissipation rate were experienced in areas with low-velocity magnitude. Also, the rate of erosive wear was relatively high at the elbow and the hotspot varied with pipe curvature. The particle flow rate, mass, and size were varied and it was found that erosion rate increased with an increase in particle properties.


Tsinghua University Press