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10.3 Flow in Multiple Rotating Reference Frames

Many problems involve multiple moving parts or contain stationary surfaces which are not surfaces of revolution (and therefore cannot be used with the Single Reference Frame modeling approach). For these problems, you must break up the model into multiple fluid/solid cell zones, with interface boundaries separating the zones. Zones which contain the moving components can then be solved using the moving reference frame equations (Section  10.2.2), whereas stationary zones can be solved with the stationary frame equations. The manner in which the equations are treated at the interface lead to two approaches which are supported in FLUENT:

Both the MRF and mixing plane approaches are steady-state approximations, and differ primarily in the manner in which conditions at the interfaces are treated. These approaches will be discussed in the sections below. The sliding mesh model approach is, on the other hand, inherently unsteady due to the motion of the mesh with time. This approach is discussed in Chapter  11.

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