Coupled Water and Heat Flow with SVFlux™ and SVHeat™

Freezing Pipe
Coupled conductive and convective heat modeling now available in 1D, 2D, or 3D analysis

SASKATOON, March 2010 – SoilVision Systems Ltd. would like to announce the addition of fully coupled heat and water flow introduced in the SVFlux™ and SVHeat™ software packages. This addition allows the fully coupled modeling of both conductive and convective heat flow in groundwater. The coupling has been implemented in 1D, 2D, Axisymmetric, and 3D modeling and is enabled to work with the Professional versions of the software. Applications of this new modeling ability include geothermal heat exchangers, mine stope groundwater interactions, cover modeling through the winter months, thermal flow regimes around buried hot pipes in permafrost areas, thermosyphon performance, and freezing beneath highways.

The benchmarking of coupled processes becomes progressively more difficult as the complexity of the coupling increases. The development process began with a literature review of publications related to this area. Once the relevant literature was assembled a number of appropriate benchmarks were established to prove the formulation, which was then implemented in SVFlux™ and SVHeat™. All software "modules" in SVOffice™ 2009 are part of the same code. Setting up a coupled problem merely requires the user to use the "Add coupling..." option when in either SVFlux™ and SVHeat™ to add the secondary process. The user can then flip back and forth between the two software packages to define material properties and boundary conditions which are unique to each process. The geometry remains consistent between the two coupled processes.

Using this unique design methodology the setting up of coupled models is i) highly simplified and ii) generally no different than setting up individual uncoupled models. All of the existing CAD model design features as well as other aspects such as automatic mesh refinement continue to be available and highly applicable to solving a coupled model. The user interface is state-of-the-art and allows fast and easy model creation.

Processes of conduction and convection are both solved for simultaneously in a coupled model. Modeling the convection process means that the heat or cold carried along with the flow of the water is simulated. The correct solution of these coupled processes was verified through a series of identified benchmarks. These benchmarks are presented in the SVHeat™ Verification Manual. The complete theoretical development of the coupled equations may be found in the SVHeat™ Theory Manual. SoilVision Systems Ltd. also distributes a large database of numerical models. All the verification models as well as a few example models are available in the group of distribution models:

GeoThermalContains latest coupled heat and flow models
MineStopesGeothermal models of mine stopes
FoundationsContains thermal models of building foundations
EarthCoversContains the "FreezingProfile_wClimate" model which illustrates progression of a freezing front in a 1D simulation.
PondsA few models showing freezing beneath a pond are included
RoadwaysFreezing beneath roadways is illustrated in these models

It should be noted that all SVHeat™ distribution models can be filtered by selecting SVHeat™ as the Application under the List Criteria once the SVOffice™ 2009 software is opened.

If you are interested in applying a coupled flow and thermal model to your situation please contact us directly. Our products can now be ordered directly on-line from here.

About SoilVision Systems Ltd.

SoilVision Systems Ltd. was formed in 1997 by Murray Fredlund, Ph.D., P.Eng. to provide high level software tools to meet the needs of geo-professionals attempting to model the behavior of complex saturated and unsaturated soil systems.