RESEARCH PAPERS: Phase-Change and Multiphase Heat Transfer

The Onset of Flow Instability for Downward Flow in Vertical Channels

[+] Author and Article Information
R. Stelling, E. V. McAssey

Villanova University, Villanova, PA 19085

T. Dougherty, B. W. Yang

Columbia University, New York, NY 10027

J. Heat Transfer 118(3), 709-714 (Aug 01, 1996) (6 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2822690 History: Received December 04, 1995; Revised April 26, 1996; Online December 05, 2007


A simple analytical model to predict the onset of Ledinegg instability in vertical channels under downflow conditions has been developed and evaluated. The model divides the flow field into three regions based upon the fluid temperature. The pressure drop is then found by solving an appropriate set of equations for each region. The theoretical results are compared to an extensive set of experimental data covering a range of channel diameters and operating conditions. Agreement is excellent, and the prediction of the velocity at which the minimum point in the demand curve occurs is within 12 percent over the range of experimental results. A parameter, the ratio between the surface heat flux and the heat flux required to achieve saturation at the channel exit for a given flow rate, is found to be a very accurate indicator of the minimum point velocity.

Copyright © 1996 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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