A numerical study on the softening process of iron ore particles in the cohesive zone of an experimental blast furnace using a coupled CFD-DEM method

by   Mehdi Baniasadi, et al.

Reduced iron-bearing materials start softening in the cohesive zone of a blast furnace due to the high temperature and the weight of the burden above. Softening process causes a reduction of void space between particles. As a result, the pressure drop and gas flow change remarkably in this particular zone. As a consequence, it has a significant influence on the performance of a blast furnace and is needed to be fully characterized. For this reason, the gas rheology along with the deformation of the particles and the heat transfer between particle-particle and particle-gas should be adequately described. In this paper, the eXtended Discrete Element Method (XDEM), as a CFD-DEM approach coupled with the heat transfer, is applied to model complex gas- solid flow during the softening process of pre-reduced iron ore pellets in an Experimental Blast Furnace (EBF). The particle deformation, displacement, temperature, and gas pressure drop and flow under conditions relevant to the EBF operations are examined. Moreover, to accurately capture the high gas velocity inlet, a dual-grid multi-scale approach is applied. The approach and findings are helpful to understand the effect of the softening process on the pressure drop and gas flow in the cohesive zone of the blast furnace.


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