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Research Papers: Heat Exchangers

An Experimentally Validated Numerical Modeling Technique for Perforated Plate Heat Exchangers

[+] Author and Article Information
M. J. White1

Accelerator Division/Cryogenic Systems, Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, Batavia, IL 60510

G. F. Nellis, S. A. Klein

Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI 53703

W. Zhu, Y. Gianchandani

Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, Ann Arbor, MI 48109

1

Corresponding author.

J. Heat Transfer 132(11), 111801 (Aug 10, 2010) (9 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4000673 History: Received February 04, 2009; Revised October 01, 2009; Published August 10, 2010; Online August 10, 2010

Cryogenic and high-temperature systems often require compact heat exchangers with a high resistance to axial conduction in order to control the heat transfer induced by axial temperature differences. One attractive design for such applications is a perforated plate heat exchanger that utilizes high conductivity perforated plates to provide the stream-to-stream heat transfer and low conductivity spacers to prevent axial conduction between the perforated plates. This paper presents a numerical model of a perforated plate heat exchanger that accounts for axial conduction, external parasitic heat loads, variable fluid and material properties, and conduction to and from the ends of the heat exchanger. The numerical model is validated by experimentally testing several perforated plate heat exchangers that are fabricated using microelectromechanical systems based manufacturing methods. This type of heat exchanger was investigated for potential use in a cryosurgical probe. One of these heat exchangers included perforated plates with integrated platinum resistance thermometers. These plates provided in situ measurements of the internal temperature distribution in addition to the temperature, pressure, and flow rate measured at the inlet and exit ports of the device. The platinum wires were deposited between the fluid passages on the perforated plate and are used to measure the temperature at the interface between the wall material and the flowing fluid. The experimental testing demonstrates the ability of the numerical model to accurately predict both the overall performance and the internal temperature distribution of perforated plate heat exchangers over a range of geometry and operating conditions. The parameters that were varied include the axial length, temperature range, mass flow rate, and working fluid.

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Copyright © 2010 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Figures

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Figure 1

Qualitative temperature distribution in a spacer/heat transfer plate unit (2)

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Figure 2

Schematic of a single plate

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Figure 3

Distribution of the nodes used to simulate a single plate

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Figure 4

Integration of plates and spacers in order to simulate a perforated plate heat exchanger

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Figure 5

Simplified flow schematic of the cryogenic test facility used for testing the MEMS heat exchangers. The temperature at each port was measured using a platinum resistor (PRT) and a type E thermocouple (TC). The absolute pressure (P) was measured at the warm end ports of the heat exchanger and the differential pressure drop (ΔP) was measured on each side of the heat exchanger. A heater (HTR) was used to control the cryocooler temperature and a flow meter (FM) was used to measure the mass flow rate.

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Figure 6

(a) Single die with integrated PRT, (b) perforated plate heat exchanger, and (c) perforated plate heat exchanger integrated with headers

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Figure 7

Measured and predicted effectiveness based on the hot and cold streams as a function of the mass flow rate for the 16 die heat exchanger tested with helium

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Figure 8

Measured and predicted effectiveness based on the hot and cold streams as a function of the mass flow rate for the 43 die heat exchanger tested with helium. Also shown are the test results for the 16 die heat exchanger, shown in Fig. 7.

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Figure 9

Measured and predicted hot and cold fluid temperatures as a function of position (expressed in terms of plate number) for the lowest mass flow rate data point taken with helium, shown in Fig. 8

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Figure 10

Measured and predicted hot and cold fluid temperatures as a function of position (expressed in terms of plate number) for the highest mass flow rate data point taken with helium, shown in Fig. 8

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Figure 11

Measured and predicted effectiveness based on the hot and cold streams as a function of the mass flow rate for the 43 die heat exchanger tested with ethane

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Figure 12

Measured and predicted hot and cold fluid temperatures as a function of position (expressed in terms of plate number) for the lowest mass flow rate data point taken with ethane, shown in Fig. 1

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Figure 13

Measured and predicted hot and cold fluid temperatures as a function of position (expressed in terms of plate number) for the highest mass flow rate data point taken with ethane, shown in Fig. 1

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