Large petroleum resources in deep sea, and huge market demands for petroleum need advanced petroleum extraction technology. The multiphase pump, which can simultaneously transport oil and gas with considerable efficiency, has been a crucial technology in petroleum extraction. A numerical approach with mesh generation and a Navier-Stokes equation solution is employed to evaluate the effects of gas volume fraction on energy performance and pressure fluctuations of a multiphase pump. Good agreement of experimental and calculation results indicates that the numerical approach can accurately simulate the multiphase flow in pumps. The pressure rise of a pump decreases with the increasing of flow rate, and the pump efficiency decreases with the increasing of GVF (the ratio of the gas volume to the whole volume). Results show that the dominant frequencies of pressure fluctuation in the impeller and diffuser are eleven and three times those of the impeller rotational frequency, respectively. Due to the larger density of water and centrifugal forces, the water aggregates to the shroud and the gas gathers to the hub, which renders the distribution of GVF in the pump uneven. A vortex develops at the blade suction side, near the leading edge, induced by the leakage flow, and further affects the pressure fluctuation in the impeller. The obvious vortex in the diffuser indicates that the design of the divergence angle of the diffuser is not optimal, which induces flow separation due to large diffusion ratio. A uniform flow pattern in the impeller indicates good hydraulic performance of the pump.
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