This article presents a research that demonstrates the need for experimental validation of computational fluid dynamics (CFD) models for complex processes, such as blending. An additional result of the study is that it provided researchers a better understanding of how to use CFD models in general. The principle for blending is the same for all blender-pump designs: the business end of a centrifugal pump will be submerged in the salt solutions in the tank. Lab researchers found that, although CFD provided good estimates of an average blending time, experimental blending times varied significantly from the average. The issue of experimental uncertainty is inherent in CFD modeling as well as in many empirical equations used for modeling and design methods. In order to bring all of this research together, the process variables investigated were the fluid velocities in the tanks and the times required to blend the fluids. The large scatter in experimental data shows that large errors can be obtained from CFD models in the absence of experimental correction factors.

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