Rise of an argon bubble in liquid steel in the presence of a transverse magnetic field

K. Jin, P. Kumar, S. P. Vanka, B. G. Thomas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The rise of gaseous bubbles in viscous liquids is a fundamental problem in fluid physics, and it is also a common phenomenon in many industrial applications such as materials processing, food processing, and fusion reactor cooling. In this work, the motion of a single argon gas bubble rising in quiescent liquid steel under an external magnetic field is studied numerically using a Volume-of-Fluid method. To mitigate spurious velocities normally generated during numerical simulation of multiphase flows with large density differences, an improved algorithm for surface tension modeling, originally proposed by Wang and Tong ["Deformation and oscillations of a single gas bubble rising in a narrow vertical tube," Int. J. Therm. Sci. 47, 221-228 (2008)] is implemented, validated and used in the present computations. The governing equations are integrated by a second-order space and time accurate numerical scheme, and implemented on multiple Graphics Processing Units with high parallel efficiency. The motion and terminal velocities of the rising bubble under different magnetic fields are compared and a reduction in rise velocity is seen in cases with the magnetic field applied. The shape deformation and the path of the bubble are discussed. An elongation of the bubble along the field direction is seen, and the physics behind these phenomena is discussed. The wake structures behind the bubble are visualized and effects of the magnetic field on the wake structures are presented. A modified drag coefficient is obtained to include the additional resistance force caused by adding a transverse magnetic field.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number093301
JournalPhysics of fluids
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computational Mechanics
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Fluid Flow and Transfer Processes


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