A simulation model for emulsification in high pressure homogenization (HPH), based on a population balance approach, is developed assuming it to be controlled by three simultaneous processes; fragmentation, coalescence and adsorption of a macromolecular emulsifier. The aim is to investigate the implications of adding a set of models together; studying the effects of dynamics, size effects and process interactions.
For fragmentation, turbulent inertial and turbulent viscous forces are included using a dynamic model based on the Weber and Capillary number. It was extended to include a deformation time scale.
The rate of adsorption and coalescence is assumed to be controlled by the collision rate of macromolecular stabilizer and bare interface, modeled using convective and diffusive transport in turbulent flow.
By comparing simulation results to general trends found in the literature, it can be concluded that the models can reproduce the general HPH process well. By dividing the active region of emulsification in the homogenizing valve into discrete steps, the dynamic process could also be examined, indicating the homogenization process being composed of three stages with coalescence predominantly found in the last one.
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