A CFD Study Assisted with Experimental Confirmation for Liquid Shape Control of Electromagnetically Levitated Bulk Materials

  • X. Cai
  • H. P. WangEmail author
  • M. X. Li
  • Y. H. Wu
  • B. Wei


Two types of optimized electromagnetic levitators were designed to achieve the free surface shape control of metallic melts as the combined results of the Lorentz force, sample gravity, and surface tension. The levitation behavior of bulk melts was investigated using computational fluid dynamics (CFD) modeling coupled with high-frequency electromagnetic field analysis and the arbitrary Lagrangian–Eulerian (ALE) method. The difference in the oscillation behavior between the solid and molten samples was explained by the damping of the electromagnetic induction and liquid viscosity. The motion of the mass center, melt shape, flow pattern, and Lorentz force in the levitated melt were determined within a wide excitation current range. With the increase in the applied current, the melt’s centroid position rose sharply in the area with low current but displayed a slow increase in the area with high current. Meanwhile, the stable shape of the bulk melt showed the typical transition from a long taper through a short taper and then into a rhombus. The internal flow pattern transformed from a simple double-loop structure to a complex configuration with three or four loops. The dependence of the deformation on the Bond number was analyzed in the two types of levitators. In addition, the stable shape and swing process of the bulk Al melt within the two types of electromagnetic levitation (EML) systems were quantitatively studied under protective inert gas conditions. The melt contour could be well described by the 10th Legendre polynomial function with a deviation of less than 0.5 pct.



This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos. 51522102, 51474175, 51327901 and 51734008).


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Copyright information

© The Minerals, Metals & Materials Society and ASM International 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • X. Cai
    • 1
  • H. P. Wang
    • 1
    Email author
  • M. X. Li
    • 1
  • Y. H. Wu
    • 1
  • B. Wei
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Applied PhysicsNorthwestern Polytechnical UniversityXi’anP.R. China

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