Curved channels are very often present in real hydraulic systems, e.g. curved diffusers of hydraulic turbines, S-shaped bulb turbines, fittings, etc. Curvature brings change of velocity profile, generation of vortices and production of hydraulic losses. Flow simulation using CFD techniques were performed to understand these phenomena. Cases ranging from single elbow to coupled elbows in shapes of U, S and spatial right angle position with circular cross-section were modeled for Re = 60000. Spatial development of the flow was studied and consequently it was deduced that minor losses are connected with the transformation of pressure energy into kinetic energy and vice versa. This transformation is a dissipative process and is reflected in the amount of the energy irreversibly lost. Least loss coefficient is connected with flow in U-shape elbows, biggest one with flow in Sshape elbows. Finally, the extent of the flow domain influenced by presence of curvature was examined. This is important for proper placement of mano- and flowmeters during experimental tests. Simulations were verified with experimental results presented in literature.
curvature, hydraulic loss, vortex , Coriolis number, energy transformation