Simulation of micro-scale porous flow using Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics

Patrick Charles Hassard, Ian Turner, Troy Farrell, Daniel Lester


Fluid flow in a porous medium is a well-studied aspect of applied mathematics with significant real-world application. The standard modelling approach for this type of flow is to homogenise the porous structure. A dual-scale model, with the smaller scale at the pore-scale, would possibly capture the fluid mechanical phenomena more faithfully than a volume averaged approach. We investigate the significance of the microstructure shape on the flux through the medium. We also evaluate whether smoothed particle hydrodynamics may be viable in a dual-scale model. We find that varying the shape of the porous structure causes the average flux to vary significantly. This contradicts the assumption commonly made that only the porosity is important. We conclude that there is significant information present in the dual-scale model that is lost by a volume averaged model. We also find that the smoothed particle hydrodynamics simulation is computationally intensive, but that there is a time-saving measure that may provide viability to the dual-scale model.

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