Lattice-Boltzmann flow simulation of an oil-in-water emulsion through a coalescing filter: Effects of filter structure

Yasushi Mino, Ayano Hasegawa, Hiroyuki Shinto, Hideto Matsuyama

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)


The permeation of an oil-in-water (O/W) emulsion through a coalescing filter was numerically studied using the lattice Boltzmann method (LBM). A numerical simulation model for the coalescing phenomena was developed based on the free-energy LBM. We investigated the effects of the wettability of fibers, filter porosity, and fiber diameter on the coalescing behaviors by performing two-dimensional permeation simulations for the O/W emulsions through modeled fibrous filters. We mainly focused on hydrophilic filters because they did not generate small secondary droplets during oil droplet detachment from the filter, and this is preferred for precise separation of oil and water. Our simulations demonstrated that filters with larger pore spacings enable formation of larger droplets but allow more droplets to pass without coalescing. To solve this problem, we designed bi-layered filters composed of a small-pore filter to accurately catch the droplets and a large-pore filter to enlarge the droplets; we demonstrated the effectiveness of the bilayer structure for membrane coalescence.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)210-217
Number of pages8
JournalChemical Engineering Science
Publication statusPublished - Feb 23 2018


  • Coalescence
  • Computational fluid dynamics
  • Lattice Boltzmann method
  • Membrane
  • Oil-in-water emulsion
  • Oil-water separation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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