Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science


Mechanical Engineering

First Advisor

Richard H. Pletcher


Numerical simulation methods for axisymmetric laminar pipe and orifice flow by the primitive variable approach and the stream function vorticity approach were introduced in this thesis. These numerical simulation methods were validated by comparing the simulation results for axisymmetric laminar pipe flow with corresponding analytical solutions. Numerical simulations were carried out to simulate low Reynolds number flow through orifices with orifice/pipe diameter ratios of 0.5 and 0.2 by both approaches. The simulation results matched the experimental and numerical simulation results provided by other researchers. Numerical simulations for low Reynolds number flow through an orifice with a very small orifice/pipe diameter ratio (diameter ratio of 0.0445) were carried out by FLUENT and the stream function vorticity approach. The numerical simulation results at low orifice Reynolds numbers were compared with the theoretical prediction given by Dagan et al. and the experimental results obtained by other Iowa State University (ISU) investigators. It was found that the simulation results by both FLUENT and the stream function vorticity approach were consistent with the theoretical prediction at low orifice Reynolds numbers, and the ISU experimental results were much lower than the numerical simulation results. A simple non-Newtonian modeling was used in FLUENT to simulate the low orifice Reynolds number flow through the orifice with the diameter ratio of 0.0445. The non-Newtonian results were closer to the ISU experimental results compared to the Newtonian results.



Digital Repository @ Iowa State University,

Copyright Owner

Chunjian Ni



OCLC Number


File Format


File Size

175 pages