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Lubricants 2018, 6(1), 10; https://doi.org/10.3390/lubricants6010010

Contaminant Particle Motion in Lubricating Grease Flow: A Computational Fluid Dynamics Approach

1
Division of Fluid and Experimental Mechanics, Luleå University of Technology, SE-97187 Luleå, Sweden
2
MicroTech Lab, Mechanical Engineering Department, Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, 08222 Terrassa, Spain
3
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology Patna, 801103 Bihta, India
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 21 November 2017 / Revised: 29 December 2017 / Accepted: 9 January 2018 / Published: 17 January 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Lubricating Greases 2017)
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Abstract

In this paper, numerical simulations of particle migration in lubricating grease flow are presented. The rheology of three lithium greases with NLGI (National Lubricating Grease Institute) grades 00, 1 and 2 respectively are considered. The grease is modeled as a single-phase Herschel–Bulkley fluid, and the particle migration has been considered in two different grease pockets formed between two concentric cylinders where the inner cylinder is rotating and driving the flow. In the wide grease pocket, the width of the gap is much smaller compared to the axial length scale, enabling a one-dimensional flow. In the narrow pocket, the axial and radial length is of the same order, yielding a three-dimensional flow. It was found that the change in flow characteristics due to the influence of the pocket lateral boundaries when going from the wide to the narrow pocket leads to a significantly shorter migration time. Comparing the results with an existing migration model treating the radial component contribution, it was concluded that a solution to the flow in the whole domain is needed together with a higher order numerical scheme to obtain a full solution to the particle migration. This result is more pronounced in the narrow pocket due to gradients in the flow induced by the lateral boundaries. View Full-Text
Keywords: lubricating grease flow; velocity profiles; rheology; lubrication; computational fluid dynamics (CFD); double restriction seal; contaminants; particle migration lubricating grease flow; velocity profiles; rheology; lubrication; computational fluid dynamics (CFD); double restriction seal; contaminants; particle migration
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Westerberg, L.-G.; Farré-Lladós, J.; Sarkar, C.; Casals-Terré, J. Contaminant Particle Motion in Lubricating Grease Flow: A Computational Fluid Dynamics Approach. Lubricants 2018, 6, 10.

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