Meso-scale particles for quantitative prediction of powder transfer by pneumatic conveying

Oguzhan Erken

Host Institutions

University of Edinburgh [ 24 months ]
Procter & Gamble Technical Centres Ltd [ 12 months ]


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I am Oguzhan Erken and come from Turkey. I obtained my BSc in Mechanical Engineering at Bogazici University. Then, I finished my MSc at Koc University Mechanical Engineering Department under supervision of Prof. Dr. Metin Muradoglu. My Master’s project was about computational modelling of airway closure, and I used a Direct Numerical Method, called Front Tracking Method in this project (more details can be found here in my Google Scholar Page). Now, I am a part of TUSAIL and working on usage of meso-scale particles in pneumatic conveying. I am currently at The University of Edinburgh, and I will be at Procter & Gamble in the last year of my project. My supervisors are Dr. Kevin Hanley and Prof. Jin Ooi from The University of Edinburgh, and Dr. Prashant Gupta from Procter & Gamble.

The aim of my project is to reduce the computational expense of CFD–DEM simulations of pneumatic conveying by developing a quantitative and predictive simulation method using meso-scale particles, correctly accounting for the fundamental gas–solid interactions. For this purpose, experimental data from lab- and pilot-scale pneumatic conveyors will be used to derive appropriate scaling relations that will be incorporated into the simulation codes. The desired output of the project is a practically useful approach to design and optimise pneumatic conveyors for a broad range of industrial applications at an acceptable computational cost.

Project Description

Pneumatic conveying is widely used for transporting granular materials. DEM–CFD provides a multi-scale hybrid approach to simulate such systems but is very computationally expensive. The scientific challenge is to take the fundamental fluid–solid interactions into account to develop a quantitative, predictive method for conveying using upscaled particles, enabling faster simulations and creating a practically useful tool to design and optimise pneumatic conveyors.

Specific objectives are:
  1. Obtain experimental pneumatic conveying data using Procter & Gamble and NTE Process’s lab/pilot plant facilities;
  2. Extend current scaling laws for pneumatic conveying to include factors like particle shape and surface characteristics for fluid–solid interactions;
  3. Evaluate up-scaling approach using both particles of realistic diameter and coarser ones and validate against experiments.
Expected Results:
  1. A set of high-quality pneumatic conveying data from lab and pilot-scale facilities;
  2. Advanced scaling laws for pneumatic conveying applied to a wide range of particle sizes, shapes and flow regimes
  3. Validation of scaled pneumatic conveying simulations using pneumatic conveying pilot plant at NTE Process.
Essential Criteria:
  • An undergraduate degree in Chemical, Civil or Mechanical Engineering, Physics or a related discipline.
  • An Honours degree at 2:1 or above (or international equivalent) is required, possibly supported by an MSc Degree.
  • Meeting the School of Engineering PhD requirements, (see “Entry Requirements” at, including English language requirements.