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Magnetic levitation of large liquid volume

V. Bojarevics - A. Roy - K. A. Pericleous

School of Computing and Mathematical Sciences, University of Greenwich, London, England

Abstract
It is well known from experiments and industrial applications of cold crucible melting that an intense AC magnetic field can be used to levitate large volumes of liquid metal in the terrestrial conditions. The levitation confinement mechanism for large volumes of fluid is considerably different from the case of a small droplet, where surface tension plays a key role in constraining the liquid outflow at the critical bottom point. The dynamic interaction between the oscillatory motion of the free surface and the effects of turbulent flow is analysed using a unified numerical model, which describes the time dependent behaviour of the liquid metal and the magnetic field. The MHD modified k-ω turbulence model is used to describe the mixing and damping properties at smaller scales not resolved by the macro model. The numerical multiphysics simulations suggest that it is possible to levitate a few kilograms of liquid metal in a cold crucible without requiring mechanical support from the container walls. Possible applications to the processing of reactive metals are discussed. Figs 15, Refs 13.

Magnetohydrodynamics 46, No. 4, 339-352, 2010 [PDF, 3.21 Mb]

Copyright: Institute of Physics, University of Latvia
ISSN (printed edition): 0024-998X