Kinetic modeling of fluid-induced interactions in compressible, rarefied gas flows for aerodynamically interacting particles

Akhil V. Marayikkottu, Deborah A. Levin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In the study of gas-particulate multiphase systems, the flow of high-speed gas through a distribution of solid particulates is of utmost importance. While these aerodynamically interacting systems have been extensively studied for low-speed gas flows in the gas continuum regime, less attention has been given to high-speed systems where non-continuum effects are significant due to the high flow gradients. To address this, the flow of rarefied gas through an aerodynamically interacting monodisperse spherical particle system is studied using the Direct Simulation Monte Carlo (DSMC) gas-kinetic approach. Since the method provides the best resolution of shocks at supersonic Mach numbers it is used to classify the weak separated shocks and strong collective shocks in these systems based on particle spacing in a two-particulate system at different orientation angles. The study used the two-particle system to help analyze more complex particle distributions of volume fractions, 1%, 5%, and 15%, exposed to gas flows in the slip and transitional gas regime for a free-stream Mach number range of 0.2<Ma<2.0. We observe that the weak separated shocks in the 1% distribution allow a higher degree of gas penetration and shock-particle interactions or “hypersonic-surfing”, exposing a major fraction of the particulates to higher force magnitudes. In contrast, the strong collective shock in the 5% and 15% distributions only generates high particulate forces on the flow-facing particles. Finally, a simple stochastic model is proposed for use in large-scale Eulerian–Lagrangian simulations that captures the non-monotonic behavior of average drag and force variability generated by the complicated gas particulate interactions in the compressible gas regime.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number104684
JournalInternational Journal of Multiphase Flow
StatePublished - Jan 2024
Externally publishedYes


  • Aerodynamic interaction
  • DSMC
  • Multiphase flows
  • Rarefied multiphase flows

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanical Engineering
  • General Physics and Astronomy
  • Fluid Flow and Transfer Processes


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