Multiphase flow analysis includes a simulation of any complex 3D fluid flow involving liquids, gases, and solids as well as any combination of these using CFD. Examples include predicting erosion, separation behavior, e.g., mud-gas separator performance, or subsea plume analysis. Virtually any fluid dynamics problem can be solved in this way.
Multiphase flows occur whenever any combination of gas, liquid, and solids are present together. The physics of these flows differ from their single-phase counterparts when only one fluid is present, and the complexity involved is substantially higher. This is where computational fluid dynamics (CFD) proves to be an invaluable tool as it can be used to simulate any multiphase flow.
CFD can be used during the design process to aid understanding of what is likely to happen or can be used as a forensic tool to explain what happened if something fails or does not function as intended – Wild Well uses it for both.
Multiphase flows can also occur when you have a phase change, e.g., when water freezes, you have a combination of liquid and solid that changes with time. Wild Well’s Cryogenic Freezing Service is a good example of when such phase changes are critically important. Predicting in advance what will happen during a cryogenic freeze attempt in more complex cases can be achieved with CFD.