Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 10

microchannel Related Abstracts

10 CFD Modeling of Boiling in a Microchannel Based On Phase-Field Method

Authors: Rahim Jafari, Tuba Okutucu-Özyurt


The hydrodynamics and heat transfer characteristics of a vaporized elongated bubble in a rectangular microchannel have been simulated based on Cahn-Hilliard phase-field method. In the simulations, the initially nucleated bubble starts growing as it comes in contact with superheated water. The growing shape of the bubble compared with the available experimental data in the literature.

Keywords: Simulation, Boiling, microchannel, Cahn-Hilliard method

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9 An Experimental Study on the Effects of Aspect Ratio of a Rectangular Microchannel on the Two-Phase Frictional Pressure Drop

Authors: J. A. Louw Coetzee, Josua P. Meyer


The thermodynamic properties of different refrigerants in combination with the variation in geometrical properties (hydraulic diameter, aspect ratio, and inclination angle) of a rectangular microchannel determine the two-phase frictional pressure gradient. The effect of aspect ratio on frictional pressure drop had not been investigated enough during adiabatic two-phase flow and condensation in rectangular microchannels. This experimental study was concerned with measurement of the frictional pressure gradient in a rectangular microchannel, with hydraulic diameter of 900 μm. The aspect ratio of this microchannel was varied over a range that stretched from 0.3 to 3 in order to capture the effect of aspect ratio variation. A commonly used refrigerant, R134a, was used in the tests that spanned over a mass flux range of 100 to 1000 kg m-2 s-1 as well as the whole vapour quality range. This study formed part of a refrigerant condensation experiment and was therefore conducted at a saturation temperature of 40 °C. The study found that there was little influence of the aspect ratio on the frictional pressure drop at the test conditions. The data was compared to some of the well known micro- and macro-channel two-phase pressure drop correlations. Most of the separated flow correlations predicted the pressure drop data well at mass fluxes larger than 400 kg m-2 s-1 and vapour qualities above 0.2.

Keywords: aspect ratio, two-phase, pressure gradient, microchannel

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8 Numerical Analysis of Roughness Effect on Mini and Microchannels: Hydrodynamics and Heat Transfer

Authors: El-Ghalia Filali, Cherif Gadouche, Mohamed Tahar


A three-dimensional numerical simulation of flow through mini and microchannels with designed roughness is conducted here. The effect of the roughness height (surface roughness), geometry, Reynolds number on the friction factor and the Nusselt number is investigated. The study is carried out by employing CFD software, CFX. Our work focuses on a water flow inside a circular mini-channel of 1 mm and microchannels of 500 and 100 μm in diameter. The speed entry varies from 0.1 m/s to 20 m/s. The general trend can be observed that bigger sizes of roughness element lead to higher flow resistance. It is found that the friction factor increases in a nonlinear fashion with the increase in obstruction height. Particularly, the effect of roughness can no longer be ignored at relative roughness height higher than 3%. A significant increase in Poiseuille number is detected for all configurations considered. The same observation can be done for Nusselt number. The transition zone between laminar and turbulent flow depends on the channel diameter.

Keywords: Heat Transfer, Hydrodynamics, roughness, minichannel, microchannel

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7 Reducing Pressure Drop in Microscale Channel Using Constructal Theory

Authors: K. X. Cheng, A. L. Goh, K. T. Ooi


The effectiveness of microchannels in enhancing heat transfer has been demonstrated in the semiconductor industry. In order to tap the microscale heat transfer effects into macro geometries, overcoming the cost and technological constraints, microscale passages were created in macro geometries machined using conventional fabrication methods. A cylindrical insert was placed within a pipe, and geometrical profiles were created on the outer surface of the insert to enhance heat transfer under steady-state single-phase liquid flow conditions. However, while heat transfer coefficient values of above 10 kW/m2·K were achieved, the heat transfer enhancement was accompanied by undesirable pressure drop increment. Therefore, this study aims to address the high pressure drop issue using Constructal theory, a universal design law for both animate and inanimate systems. Two designs based on Constructal theory were developed to study the effectiveness of Constructal features in reducing the pressure drop increment as compared to parallel channels, which are commonly found in microchannel fabrication. The hydrodynamic and heat transfer performance for the Tree insert and Constructal fin (Cfin) insert were studied using experimental methods, and the underlying mechanisms were substantiated by numerical results. In technical terms, the objective is to achieve at least comparable increment in both heat transfer coefficient and pressure drop, if not higher increment in the former parameter. Results show that the Tree insert improved the heat transfer performance by more than 16 percent at low flow rates, as compared to the Tree-parallel insert. However, the heat transfer enhancement reduced to less than 5 percent at high Reynolds numbers. On the other hand, the pressure drop increment stayed almost constant at 20 percent. This suggests that the Tree insert has better heat transfer performance in the low Reynolds number region. More importantly, the Cfin insert displayed improved heat transfer performance along with favourable hydrodynamic performance, as compared to Cfinparallel insert, at all flow rates in this study. At 2 L/min, the enhancement of heat transfer was more than 30 percent, with 20 percent pressure drop increment, as compared to Cfin-parallel insert. Furthermore, comparable increment in both heat transfer coefficient and pressure drop was observed at 8 L/min. In other words, the Cfin insert successfully achieved the objective of this study. Analysis of the results suggests that bifurcation of flows is effective in reducing the increment in pressure drop relative to heat transfer enhancement. Optimising the geometries of the Constructal fins is therefore the potential future study in achieving a bigger stride in energy efficiency at much lower costs.

Keywords: pressure drop, microchannel, constructal theory, enhanced heat transfer

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6 AC Electro-Kinetics, Bipolar Current and Concentration-Polarization in a Microchannel-Nafion Membrane System

Authors: Sinwook Park, Gilad Yossifon


The presence of a floating electrode array located within the depletion layer formed due to concentration-polarization (CP) across a microchannel-membrane device, produces not only induced-charge electro-osmosis (ICEO) vortex and but also a bipolar current resulting from faradaic reactions. It has been shown that there exists an optimal SiO2 layer thickness of ~50nm which is sufficient to suppress bipolar currents (at least up to 5V applied voltage) but still enables ICEO vortices that stir the depletion layer, thereby affecting its I-V response. This effect is pronounced beyond the limiting current where the existence of the depletion layer results in increased local electric field due to decreased solution conductivity. This comprehensive study of the interaction of embedded electrodes with the induced CP in microchannel-perm selective medium systems, allows one to choose the thickness of the thin dielectric coating to either enhance the mixing as a means to control the diffuse layer, or suppress it, for example, in the case where electrodes are intended for local measurements of the solution conductivity with minimal invasion. In addition, the use of alternating-current electro-osmosis by activating electrodes results in further enhancement of the fluid stirring and opens new routes for on-demand spatiotemporal control of the CP length. In addition, the use of embedded heaters within the depletion layer generates electro-thermal vortices that in turn also control the CP length.

Keywords: microchannel, AC electrokinetics, concentration-polarization, bipolar current

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5 CFD-DEM Modelling and Analysis of the Continuous Separation of Sized Particles Using Inertial Microfluidics

Authors: Yuan Wang, Aibing Yu, Hui Zhu, Shibo Kuang


The inertial difference induced by the microfluidics inside a curved micro-channel has great potential to provide a fast, inexpensive, and portable solution to the separation of micro- and sub-micro particles in many applications such as aerosol collections, airborne bacteria and virus detections, as well as particle sortation. In this work, the separation behaviors of different sized particles inside a reported curved micro-channel have been studied by a combined approach of computational fluid dynamics for gas and discrete element model for particles (CFD-DEM). The micro-channel is operated by controlling the gas flow rates at all of its branches respectively used to load particles, introduce gas streams, collect particles of various sizes. The validity of the model has been examined by comparing by the calculated separation efficiency of different sized particles against the measurement. On this basis, the separation mechanisms of the inertial microfluidic separator are elucidated in terms of the interactions between particles, between particle and fluid, and between particle and wall. The model is then used to study the effect of feed solids concentration on the separation accuracy and efficiency. The results obtained from the present study demonstrate that the CFD-DEM approach can provide a convenient way to study the particle separation behaviors in micro-channels of various types.

Keywords: separation, microchannel, CFD-DEM, inertial effect

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4 Liquid-Liquid Plug Flow Characteristics in Microchannel with T-Junction

Authors: Anna Yagodnitsyna, Alexander Kovalev, Artur Bilsky


The efficiency of certain technological processes in two-phase microfluidics such as emulsion production, nanomaterial synthesis, nitration, extraction processes etc. depends on two-phase flow regimes in microchannels. For practical application in chemistry and biochemistry it is very important to predict the expected flow pattern for a large variety of fluids and channel geometries. In the case of immiscible liquids, the plug flow is a typical and optimal regime for chemical reactions and needs to be predicted by empirical data or correlations. In this work flow patterns of immiscible liquid-liquid flow in a rectangular microchannel with T-junction are investigated. Three liquid-liquid flow systems are considered, viz. kerosene – water, paraffin oil – water and castor oil – paraffin oil. Different flow patterns such as parallel flow, slug flow, plug flow, dispersed (droplet) flow, and rivulet flow are observed for different velocity ratios. New flow pattern of the parallel flow with steady wavy interface (serpentine flow) has been found. It is shown that flow pattern maps based on Weber numbers for different liquid-liquid systems do not match well. Weber number multiplied by Ohnesorge number is proposed as a parameter to generalize flow maps. Flow maps based on this parameter are superposed well for all liquid-liquid systems of this work and other experiments. Plug length and velocity are measured for the plug flow regime. When dispersed liquid wets channel walls plug length cannot be predicted by known empirical correlations. By means of particle tracking velocimetry technique instantaneous velocity fields in a plug flow regime were measured. Flow circulation inside plug was calculated using velocity data that can be useful for mass flux prediction in chemical reactions.

Keywords: Hydrodynamics, Flow Patterns, microchannel, liquid-liquid flow

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3 Investigation of Heat Transfer of Nanofluids in Circular Microchannels

Authors: Bayram Sahin, Emre Mandev, Murat Ceylan, Hourieh Bayramian


In industrial applications, the demand for the enhancement of heat transfer is a common engineering problem. The use of additives to heat transfer fluid is a technique applied to enhance the heat transfer performance of base fluids. In this study, the thermal performance of nanofluids consisting of SiO2 particles and deionized water in circular microchannels was investigated experimentally. SiO2 nanoparticles with diameter of 15 nm were added to water to prepare nanofluids with 0.2% and 0.4% volume fractions. Heat transfer characteristics were calculated by using temperature, flow and pressure measurements. The thermal conductivity and viscosity values required for the calculations are measured separately. It is observed that the Nusselt number increases at the all volume fraction of particles, by increasing the Reynolds number and the volumetric ratios of the particles. The highest heat transfer enhancement is obtained at Re = 2160 and 0.4 % vol. by 14% under the condition of a constant pumping power.

Keywords: Heat Transfer, Nanofluid, microchannel, SiO2-water nanofluid

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2 Oscillatory Electroosmotic Flow in a Microchannel with Slippage at the Walls and Asymmetric Wall Zeta Potentials

Authors: José Arcos, Oscar Bautista


In this work, we conduct a theoretical analysis of an oscillatory electroosmotic flow in a parallel-plate microchannel taking into account slippage at the microchannel walls. The governing equations given by the Poisson-Boltzmann (with the Debye-Huckel approximation) and momentum equations are nondimensionalized from which four dimensionless parameters appear; a Reynolds angular number, the ratio between the zeta potentials of the microchannel walls, the electrokinetic parameter and the dimensionless slip length which measures the competition between the Navier slip length and the half height microchannel. The principal results indicate that the slippage has a strong influence on the magnitude of the oscillatory electroosmotic flow increasing the velocity magnitude up to 50% for the numerical values used in this work.

Keywords: microchannel, oscillatory flow, electroosmotic flows, slippage

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1 Numerical Study of Fluid Flow and Heat Transfer in Microchannel with Thin Obstacles

Authors: Malorzata Kmiotek, Anna Kucaba-Pietal, Robert Smusz


Due to the miniaturisation process, in many technical devices, microchannels are used in cooling systems. Because of the small size of microchannels, the flow inside is laminar, which caused a slow heat exchange. In order to intensify the heat exchange, the flow must be disturbed, for example, by introducing obstacles. We present results on the influence of a thin obstacle, placed on microchannel wall, on the fluid and heat flow in the aspect of their use by constructors of heat exchangers. The obstacle is called 'thin' when its geometrical parameter (o=w/h, w- width, h - height of the obstacle) satisfies inequality: o < 0.5. In this work, we report numerical results on heat and mass transfer in the microchannels of 400 micrometer height (H - height of the microchannel), where thin obstacles are immersed on the walls, to disturb the flow. The Reynolds number of the flow in microchannel varies between 20 and 200 and is typical for the flow in micro heat exchangers. The equations describing the fluid and heat flows in microchannels were solved numerically by using the finite element method with an application of CFD&FSI package of ADINA R&D, Inc. 9.4 solver. In the case of flows in the microchannels with sequences of thin rectangular obstacles placed on the bottom and the top wall of a microchannel, the influence of distances s (s is the distance between two thin obstacles) and heights of obstacles on the fluid and heat transfer was investigated. Thermal and flow conditions of the application area of microchannels in electronic cooling systems, i.e., wall temperature of 60 °C, the fluid temperature of 20°C were used to solve equations. Additionally, the distance s between the thin obstacles in microchannels as a multiple of the amount of the channel height was determined. Results show that placing thin obstacles on microchannel walls increase the length of recirculation zones of the flow and improves the heat transfer.

Keywords: Mechanical Engineering, Heat Transfer, Finite Element Method, microchannel

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