Virtual Engineering is a technology that integrates and combines geometric models, analysis, simulation, optimization and other decision making tools within a virtual environment to facilitate multidisciplinary and collaborative product realization. The objective is to use advanced simulation and visualization to help industry for process/product design, trouble shooting and optimization to address issues on productivity, energy, environment, and quality.
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Operations trainees receive short time training in operation procedures at coal-fired power stations operated by NIPSCO. However, during training, they are given 2D, non-scaled representation of the plant’s steam, coal cycle and limited key components.
The air distributor is a duct system that distributes air from one inlet to eleven outlets that feed into a hydrogen reformer. A uniform mass flow rate at each outlet is desired. The objective of the project is to solve the problem of mal-distribution of air flows. By using computational fluid dynamics and virtual reality visualization, recommendations have been made to change current design and operating conditions for uniform air flow distributions.
The blast furnace is one of the most important components in the entire steel and iron making industry. A number of projects have been conducted for maximizing campaign life, increasing energy efficiency and fuel utilization, reducing pollutant emissions, as well as optimizing operations.
As part of efforts in wind energy education, Purdue University Calumet will be installing a wind Vertical Axis Wind Turbine (VAWT) on the Classroom Office Building (CLO) to generate electricity and provide students with a functional tool for learning the concepts associated with wind energy.
Cooling towers have been designed to remove heat from a refinery. The basin of the cooling tower contains water. The main objective of this project is to verify that the design will not produce significant vortexes near the suction bay.
Fluid catalytic cracking (FCC) is the most important conversion process used in petroleum refineries, and FCC regenerator is a key part of an FCC unit to recover solid catalyst activity by burning off the coke deposit on the catalyst surface. There are very limited ways to observe the flow and reactions inside. BP Refining and Logistics Technology would like to have a numerical model of one of its FCC regenerator developed, which will be used as a tool to find possible design or operational improvements to the regenerator.
In the petroleum refining process, heavy crude oil is broken into lighter and more valuable products – such as gasoline and olefinic gases – through fluid catalytic cracking (FCC) process. Hot powdered catalysts are mixed with crude oil to heat up the crude oil to above its boiling temperature to break its long chain molecules. This cracking process occurs in the riser unit of the FCC system. BP Refining and Logistics Technology would like to have a numerical model of one of its FCC risers which will be used as a tool to find possible design or operational improvements to the riser.
A new Gasoil Hydrotreater (GOHT) is design to produce low-sulfur feed for the Fluidized Catalytic Cracking (FCC) Units by combining high-sulfur gasoil with hydrogen and passing the mixture through a catalyst bed at high temperature and pressure. Uneven splitting and/or phase separation of the original stream can lead to higher mass flow in some passes than others causing uneven heating as well as high furnace tube metal temperatures. This can lead to shorter tube life and potentially tube rupture. Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) simulation and virtual reality visualization have been used to determine the two-phase flow regime throughout the piping system and to investigate the degree to which each flow split is uneven.
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommended standards for different water quality constituents for surface and ground water. State division of water and EPA collects water samples and monitors the water quality.
Power Generation Air Duct A coal power station has several coal fired boilers generating electricity via steam turbines. The boilers exhaust flue gas through a horizontal Y-section to merge flows from two boilers to an environmental monitoring station and then a stack. The flow of flue gas possible through the left boiler section only allows for partial load operation. Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) simulations and virtual reality visualization have been used to optimize design and operating conditions to allow full load operations of both boilers.
A hydrogen reformer furnace converts a feed stream of methane and steam to a hydrogen rich product stream over a catalyst bed inside furnace tubes. The objective of this project is to solve the problem of non-uniform heat distribution causing shortened catalyst tube life. Computational fluid dynamic simulations and virtual reality visualization have been used to model the combustion process and flue gas distributions in the heater for optimizing the heating performance.
Mixing tanks are used to remove impurities from iron ore in a chemical leaching process in steel industry. The objective of this project is to solve the problem of uneven mixing of iron ore and liquid causing frequent shutdown of equipment. Optimization of the design of the mixing tank has been made using computational fluid dynamics simulations to improve the mixing capability and increase the performance of the mixing system.
On an aluminizing line, the steel is first passed through a preheating furnace to heat up a steel strip using multiple natural gas burners. The objective of this project is to get a better understanding of the temperature distribution along the length of the strip as it passes through the furnace for increased production efficiency and product quality.
Reheating furnaces play an important role in the production of flat steel products. Steel billets are loaded into these furnaces for heating prior to being run through a hot strip mill, and the final roll quality is highly dependent on the uniformity of the temperature distribution inside of the furnace. Computational fluid dynamics simulations have been conducted to optimize the design and operating conditions for increased energy efficiency and product quality.
The purpose of this system is to use water spray to cool chloride gasses to below the aqueous dew point which will help prevent corrosion in systems further down the line in a refinery. Computational fluid dynamics simulations have been conducted to help determine the most effective type of nozzle and the locations of installation in the piping system.
An Ultraformer at a refinery produces a high-octane blending component and mixed xylenes for chemical feedstock from hydrotreated heavy naphtha (sulfur and nitrogen removed to non-detectable limits) by converting paraffins and naphthenes to aromatics. It has been observed that hotspots develop in the tail reactor and large amounts of coke form in the catalyst bed, which must be burned off slowly during regeneration. The objective of this project is to use computational fluid dynamics simulation and virtual reality simulation to investigate flow patterns and optimize operating conditions to prevent the flow maldistribution problem.
A venturi scrubber uses water to remove particulates from a sinter plant in steel industry. The objective of this project is to solve the problem of side wall erosion causing frequent shutdown of the system. By using computational fluid dynamics and virtual reality visualization, an optimized design has been recommended for reducing erosion and increasing water utilization.
The application of a virtual blast furnace creates a computer-generated world in which people who are not analysis experts can see the results in a context that they can easily understand.
The issue of transferring learned concepts to practical applications is a widespread problem in postsecondary education. Related to this issue is a critical demand to educate and train a generation of professionals for the wind energy industry. With initiatives such as the U.S. Department of Energy’s “20% Wind Energy by 2030” outlining an exponential increase of wind energy capacity over the coming years, revolutionary educational reform is needed to meet the demand for education in the field of wind energy.
Wind energy, as one of the cleanest renewable energy, is becoming increasingly important. Both the installed wind power and the generated energy are increasing by 30% per year world-wide. Economical performance of a wind turbine is determined by the efficiency of the blade.
Insulated Marine Diesel Engine Exhaust Manifold is used to direct hot gases from engine combustion chamber to the turbocharger for energy efficiency issues. The objective of this project is to design & analyze an insulated Marine Diesel Engine Exhaust Manifold to determine potential failure modes and optimize performance. To achieve this goal, a research was conducted on the current failures, environment, performance requirements, customer expectations, and applications of this equipment. Finite Element Analysis (FEA) and Computational Fluid Dynamic (CFD) models are used for verification and validation.