Experimental and 3D CFD investigation on energy separation inside a convergent vortex tube air separator


1 Assistant Professor

2 Associate Professor


The vortex tube air separator is an invaluable tool which has the ability to separate a high pressure fluid into the cold and hot fluid streams. The hot tube is a main part of the vortex tube which the energy separation procedure happens along this part. This research has been done to analyze the effect of the convergent angle and cold orifice diameter on the thermal efficiency of a convergent vortex tube. The convergent hot tubeangleis varied over the range of 1 to 9deg. The consideration of the main angle effect, denotes that the highest thermal ability could be achieved at β=5deg. Experiments denoted that both cooling capability and heating effectiveness reach the highest magnitudes when the DCold is around 9mm. After these two stages; the optimized convergent vortex tube was capable of decreasing and rising air temperatures at the cold and the hot sides up to 9.05K(42.89%) and 10.48K(44.74%) respectively. A computational fluid dynamics model was employed to predict the performance of the convergent vortex tube. The numerical investigation was done by full 3D steady state CFD-simulation using FLUENT6.3.26. The results show that the agreement between computation predictions and laboratory measurements is fairly good.