Infoscience

Journal article

Entrainment of floating granules behind a barrier

To simulate the retaining capacity of an oil barrier in an uniform flow field, experiments were carried out in a laboratory flume at Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (EPFL), Laboratory of Hydraulic Constructions (LCH) by using Light Expanded Clay Aggregates (LECA) and plastic particles. It was demonstrated that under appropriate assumptions for the effects of buoyancy and gravity forces, the Shields approach is suitable to predict both the entrainment of suspended granules behind a barrier and the start of leakage underneath. The phenomenon was also simulated numerically with a multiphase model using a CFD code, Fluent, and the results were compared to those of the physical experiments. The "Eulerian model" multiphase model of FLUENT was selected to simulate the phenomenon. The numerical model successfully predicts the evolution of the slick shape behind the barrier for various flow conditions. The amount of LECA that leaked from the barrier agreed well with the experimental observations.

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