Study of Laminar Flow Forced Convection Heat Transfer Behavior of a Phase Change Material Fluid
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The heat transfer behavior of phase change material fluid under laminar flow conditions in circular tubes and internally longitudinal finned tubes are presented in this study. Two types of boundary conditions, including uniform axial heat flux with constant peripheral temperature and uniform axial and peripheral temperature, were considered in the case of circular tubes. An effective specific heat technique was used to model the phase change process assuming a hydrodynamically fully-developed flow at the entrance of the tube. Results were also obtained for the phase change process under hydro dynamically and thermally fully developed conditions. In case of a smooth circular tube with phase change material (PCM) fluid, results of Nusselt number were obtained by varying the bulk Stefan number. The Nusselt number results were found to be strongly dependent on the Stefan number. In the case of a finned tube two types of boundary conditions were studied. The first boundary condition had a uniform axial heat flux along the axis of the tube with a variable temperature on the peripheral surface of the tube. The second boundary condition had a constant temperature on the outer surface of the tube. The effective specific heat technique was again implemented to analyze the phase change process under both the boundary conditions. The Nusselt number was determined for a tube with two fins with different fin height ratios and fin thermal conductivity values. It was determined that the Nusselt number was strongly dependent on the Stefan number, fin thermal conductivity value, and height of the fins. It was also observed that for a constant heat axial flux boundary condition with peripherally varying temperature, the phase change slurry with the internally finned tube performed better than the one without fins. A similar trend was observed during the phase change process with internal fins under the constant wall temperature boundary condition.