Three-Dimensional Free Convection Boundary Layers in Porous Media Induced by a Heated Surface With Spanwise Temperature Variations

[+] Author and Article Information
D. A. S. Rees

Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Bath, Claverton Down, Bath BA2 7AY, United Kingdom

J. Heat Transfer 119(4), 792-798 (Nov 01, 1997) (7 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2824184 History: Received September 03, 1996; Revised April 11, 1997; Online December 05, 2007


In this paper we consider the effect of a nonuniform surface temperature distribution on the steady laminar free convection boundary layer flow induced by a vertical plate embedded in a fluid-saturated porous medium. The surface temperature profile exhibits sinusoidal variations in the spanwise (horizontal) direction, but the minimum temperature remains above or equal to that of the ambient medium. The resulting boundary layer flow is three-dimensional, and the governing equations are solved using a combination of a spanwise spectral decomposition and the Keller-box method. Detailed results in terms of the evolution of the rates of heat transfer and the developing thermal field are presented. The numerical work is supplemented by an asymptotic analysis valid far downstream where it is found that the effect of nonuniform heating becomes confined to a thin layer of uniform thickness embedded within the main growing boundary layer.

Copyright © 1997 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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