CFD Analysis of Argon Cell for Pyrochemical Processing

S. Agarwal[1], S. P. Ruhela[1], B. Muralidharan[1], B. P. Reddy[2], B. K. Sharma[1], K. Nagarajan[2], C. A. Babu[3], and K. K. Rajan[1]
[1]Fast Reactor Technology Group, Indira Gandhi Centre for Atomic Research
[2]Chemistry Group, Indira Gandhi Centre for Atomic Research
[3]HBNI & CDG, Indira Gandhi Centre for Atomic Research
Published in 2011

An inactive Demonstration facility for the integrated pyroprocess, named High temperature Electrorefining (HTER) facility is in developing stage. This facility is equipped with several types of pyroprocess equipment such as electro-refiner, salt and cadmium distillation equipment, scraping equipment and tilting equipment inside an Argon cell.

To operate the argon cell safely, all generated heat in the argon cell should be removed effectively by circulating argon gas and there should not be abnormally high temperature regions. Argon flow characteristics are studied for addressing the safety issues using COMSOL-Multiphysics simulation tool. Using this simulation tool, the fluid flow and heat transfer in argon cell is investigated to verify the influence of process apparatus layout and argon cooling system with varying argon flow rate.

The k-epsilon turbulence model along with heat transfer model has been used to calculate the argon velocity profile, temperature profile in the argon cell, and heat transfer characteristics between process apparatus and argon gas.