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RESEARCH PAPERS: Heat Exchangers

An Experimental Investigation of Convective Heat Transfer From Wire-On-Tube Heat Exchangers

[+] Author and Article Information
J. L. Hoke, A. M. Clausing, T. D. Swofford

Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1206 W. Green St., Urbana, IL 61801

J. Heat Transfer 119(2), 348-356 (May 01, 1997) (9 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2824231 History: Received March 19, 1996; Revised December 05, 1996; Online December 05, 2007

Abstract

An experimental investigation of the air-side convective heat transfer from wire-on-tube heat exchangers is described. The study is motivated by the desire to predict the performance, in a forced flow, of the steel wire-on-tube condensers used in most refrigerators. Previous investigations of wire-on-tube heat exchangers in a forced flow have not been reported in the literature. The many geometrical parameters (wire diameter, tube diameter, wire pitch, tube pitch, etc.), the complex conductive paths in the heat exchanger, and the importance of buoyant forces in a portion of the velocity regime of interest make the study a formidable one. A key to the successful correlation of the experimental results is a definition of the convective heat transfer coefficient, hw , that accounts for the temperature gradients in the wires as well as the vast difference in the two key characteristic lengths—the tube and wire diameters. Although this definition results in the need to solve a transcendental equation in order to obtain hw from the experimental data, the use of the resulting empirical correlation is straightforward. The complex influence of the mixed convection regime on the heat transfer from wire-on-tube heat exchangers is shown, as well as the effects of air velocity and the angle of attack. The study covers a velocity range of 0 to 2 m/s (the Reynolds number based on wire diameter extends to 200) and angles of attack varying from 0 deg (horizontal coils) to ±90 deg. Heat transfer data from seven different wire-on-tube heat exchangers are correlated so that 95 percent of the data below a Richardson number of 0.004, based on the wire diameter, lie within ±16.7 percent of the proposed correlation.

Copyright © 1997 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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