Development of a Numerical Simulation Tool for Quantification and Optimization of Air Freshener Performance

Project: Research project

Project Details


Development of a Numerical Simulation Tool for Quantification and Optimization of Air Freshener Performance Development of a Numerical Simulation Tool for Quantification and Optimization of Air Freshener Performance Project Summary In Phase One of this project, we have performed analyses for air flow in a typical residential room and around several current and newly-designed gel-based and liquid-based Non-Electric Continuous Action (NECA) air fresheners. The focus of Phase Two of this air freshener project is to develop a comprehensive three-dimensional (3D) numerical simulation tool based on combined air flow and mass transfer analysis that can be used to assess and quantify the performance of any NECA air freshener, newly designed or current, in terms of such quantitative measures as the time-history of the fragrance evaporation-rate, and the duration of constant performance. The tool can be used to extract key design principles in terms of a few key design parameters; and to conduct virtual experiments by numerically simulating the entire life-span of a NECA air freshener with a turn-around time in days instead of weeks as with traditional laboratory experiments. The tool can also be used to optimize the design of key elements in a NECA air freshener to maximize the performance of an air freshener. An evaporation model, as well as a dynamic wicking (capillary flow) model in the case of liquid-based fragrance, will be developed in Phase Two and coupled to the air flow analysis. The simulation tool to be developed will be comprised of custom-designed user-defined files to be used in conjunction with the commercial Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) software package FLUENT from ANSYS. The models will be benchmarked and validated with available experimental measurements, and the tool will then be used to evaluate and optimize new air freshener designs. Performance history curves for several canonical geometries for gel-based and liquid-based air fresheners (gel cone; wick plate, etc.) will be computed for different housing spacing parameters and evaporating surface sizes. These performance curves serve as key design principles which can be used as the initial guidelines for new designs. The dynamic wicking model for liquid-based fragrance will be used to correlate the evaporation-rate at the wick surface to the fragrance amount remaining in the reservoir, the pore-structure and the geometric shape of the wick. The combination of the air flow, evaporation and dynamic wicking gives the tool the capability to design wicks (pore structure and wick geometry) that optimize the air freshener performance. 2 The developed simulation toolbox will provide Henkel with a sound, science and engineering-based quantitative assessment tool to shorten the air freshener development cycle; to discover simple design principles; to conduct virtual experiments on a computer via numerical simulation with a fast turn-around time; and to rapidly create innovative and leading air freshener products. This could give Henkel a significant competitive edge in the air freshener marketplace for years to come.
Effective start/end date10/1/139/30/15


  • INDUSTRY: Domestic Company: $139,288.00


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