CFD modeling of condensation process of water vapor in supersonic flows

Yan Yang, Jens Honore Walther, Yuying Yan, Chuang Wen

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The condensation phenomenon of vapor plays an important role in various industries, such as the steam flow in turbines and refrigeration system. A mathematical model is developed to predict the spontaneous condensing phenomenon in the supersonic flows using the nucleation and droplet growth theories. The numerical approach is validated with the experimental data, which shows a good agreement between them. The condensation characteristics of water vapor in the Laval nozzle are described in detail. The results show that the condensation process is a rapid variation of the vapor-liquid phase change both in the space and in time. The spontaneous condensation of water vapor will not appear immediately when the steam reaches the saturation state. Instead, it occurs further downstream the nozzle throat, where the steam is in the state of supersaturation.
Original languageEnglish
JournalApplied Thermal Engineering
Pages (from-to)1357-1362
Publication statusPublished - 2017


  • Condensation
  • Water vapor
  • Laval nozzle
  • Supersonic flow

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