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unilogo Universität Stuttgart
Institute of Hydraulic Engineering


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Coupling of pipe flow model with multiphase flow model in porous media - Modeling of gas migration through porous media and one dimensional pipe flow network.
Project manager:Dr.-Ing. Holger Class
Deputy:Prof. Dr.-Ing. Rainer Helmig
Research assistants:Dr.-Ing. Mehmet Onur Dogan, M.Sc.
Duration:1.3.2007 - 28.2.2010
Funding:externer Link Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG)

This project is part of the research area:
Model coupling and complex structures


The numerical models of multiphase systems in porous media is applicable for many environmental related and technical problems. Often makes the structure of the porous media the conceptual modeling difficult. Heterogeneous distribution of properties, such as permeability and porosity, cause difficulties. In particular, if a big hollow structure crosses a porous medium, porous media flow and pipe flow are coupled. In this case multi phase flow equations in porous media is not capable of representing the total system. Such systems are mines (shaft, pipe network), CO2 sequestration in geological formations (abandoned wells), flow of liquids and gases in fractured porous media and also oxygen and water currents in fuel cells (at the boundary of diffusion layer and gas flow field).

The planned research covers the development of coupling strategy between the flow in porous media (Darcy flow) and the flow in one dimensional hollow structures (pipe hydraulic). In the first instance, the model will be used for the simulation of the methane migration problem in abandoned coal mines.

Figure 1: Schematic representation of planned coupling strategy

The objective of the research project :

  • Implementation of 1D pipe flow model by using box discretization
  • Coupling with porous media in 2D (matrix 2D, pipe flow 1D)
  • Implementation of pipe network system
  • Implementation of components for multiphase flow systems
  • Coupling with porous media in 3D (matrix 3D, pipe flow 1D)
  • Verification and validation of the numerical model by experimental investigation in cooperation with VEGAS