Performance analysis of cavitating flow in centrifugal pumps using multiphase CFD

Richard B. Medvitz, Robert F. Kunz, David A. Boger, Jules W. Lindau, Adam M. Yocum, Laura L. Pauley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

177 Scopus citations


A multi-phase CFD method is used to analyze centrifugal pump performance under developed cavitating conditions. the differential model employed is the homogeneous two-phase Reynolds-Averaged-Navier-Stokes equations, wherein mixture momentum and volume continuity equations are solved along with vapor volume fraction continuity. Mass transfer modeling is provided for the phase change associated with sheet cavitation. Using auasi-3D (Q3D) analysis, steady and time-dependent analyses were performed across a wide range of flow coefficients and cavitation numbers. Characteristic performance trends associated with off-design flow and blade cavitation are observed. the rapid drop in head coefficient at low cavitation numbers (breakdown) is captured for all flow coefficients. Local flow field solution plots elucidate the principal physical mechanisms associated with the onset of breakdown.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)377-383
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Fluids Engineering, Transactions of the ASME
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2002

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Mechanical Engineering


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