Research Papers: Evaporation, Boiling, and Condensation

Heat Transport Characteristics in a Miniature Flat Heat Pipe With Wire Core Wicks

[+] Author and Article Information
A. J. Jiao, J. K. Critser

Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, University of Missouri-Columbia, Columbia, MO 65211

H. B. Ma1

Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, University of Missouri-Columbia, Columbia, MO 65211mah@missouri.edu


Corresponding author.

J. Heat Transfer 130(5), 051501 (Apr 10, 2008) (9 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2887858 History: Received December 17, 2006; Revised July 23, 2007; Published April 10, 2008

A mathematical model predicting the heat transport capability in a miniature flat heat pipe (FHP) with a wired wick structure was developed to analytically determine its maximum heat transport rate including the capillary limit. The effects of gravity on the profile of the thin-film-evaporation region and the distribution of the heat flux along a curved surface were investigated. The heat transfer characteristics of the thin-film evaporation on the curved surface were also analyzed and compared with that on a flat surface. Combining the analysis on the thin-film-condensation heat transfer in the condenser, the model can be used to predict the total temperature drop between the evaporator and condenser in the FHP. In order to verify the model, an experimental investigation was conducted. The theoretical results predicted by the model agree well with the experimental data for the heat transfer process occurring in the FHP with the wired wick structure. Results of the investigation will assist in the optimum design of the curved-surface wicks to enlarge the thin-film-evaporation region and a better understanding of heat transfer mechanisms in heat pipes.

Copyright © 2008 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Figure 1

Schematic of the FHP

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Figure 2

Thin-film regions in the evaporator of FHP with wire core wicks

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Figure 9

Comparison between the theoretical prediction and experimental data of the evaporator and condenser temperature response versus heat load input (working fluid, water; charged amount=0.6g)

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Figure 8

Curved-surface effect on the heat flux distribution (Tw−Tv=1.5K)

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Figure 7

Superheat effect on the thin-film profile and heat flux distribution on the upper curved surface (Case I, α=30deg)

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Figure 6

Thin-film profiles for (a) Case I, (b) Case II, and (c) Case III (Tw−Tv=1.0K)

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Figure 5

Heat load effects on (a) average radius of evaporator at different contact angles; (b) λ at α=30deg

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Figure 4

Schematic of the experimental system

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Figure 3

Condensation heat transfer in the condenser



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