Pneumatic oil barriers (so called “bubble oil boom (BOB)”) are based on the rise of air bubbles which are injected from the submerged parallel line spargers (McClimans et al., 2012). Local outward flows are formed when the bubbles and entrained water reach the sea surface, and thereby could counterbalance the opposing sea current to retain the spilled oil. It could function alone or work together with a traditional oil boom to improve the recovery effectiveness. A multiphase Computational Fluid Dynamic model, which couples volume of fluid (VOF) and discrete phase model (DPM) approach together with an enhanced k-epsilon model, is developed. Trajectories of bubbles are computed in the Lagrangian frame of reference, exchanging momentum and turbulent energy with water and oil slick, represented in the Eulerian frame of reference. The interface between atmosphere, water and oil slick is captured by the VOF model. The model is applied to meso-scale experiments in McClimans et al. (2012) for validation. The validated numerical model can provide improved basis for the further design of BOB system.

This content is only available as a PDF.