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The main topic of this study is the mathematical modelling of bubble size distributions in an aerated stirred tank using the population balance method. The air-water system consisted of a fully baffled vessel with a diameter of 0.29 m, which was equipped with a six-bladed Rushton turbine. The secondary phase was introduced through a ring sparger situated under the impeller. Calculations were performed with the CFD software CFX 14.5. The turbulent quantities were predicted using the standard k-ε turbulence model. Coalescence and breakup of bubbles were modelled using the MUSIG method with 24 bubble size groups. For the bubble size distribution modelling, the breakup model by Luo and Svendsen (1996) typically has been used in the past. However, this breakup model was thoroughly reviewed and its practical applicability was questioned. Therefore, three different breakup models by Martínez-Bazán et al. (1999a, b), Lehr et al. (2002) and Alopaeus et al. (2002) were implemented in the CFD solver and applied to the system. The resulting Sauter mean diameters and local bubble size distributions were compared with experimental data.
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