Conduction through Droplets during Dropwise Condensation

[+] Author and Article Information
Charles J. Hurst

Department of Mechanical Engineering, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, Va.

Donald R. Olson

Department of Mechanical Engineering, Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pa.

J. Heat Transfer 95(1), 12-19 (Feb 01, 1973) (8 pages) doi:10.1115/1.3449985 History: Received November 30, 1970; Revised July 19, 1971; Online August 11, 2010


An experimental investigation was undertaken in which dropwise condensation was caused to occur on the upper side of a 0.001-in-thick horizontal copper condensing surface. The lower side of the condensing wall was convectively cooled, and the cooled-side temperatures under growing droplets were measured using infrared-radiation techniques. Temperature measurements showed good agreement with the results of a finite-element analysis of the droplet and condensing surface. Both experimental and analytical results pointed to the existence of an area of very high heat transfer right around the droplet perimeter, and to the importance of the condensing wall as a heat-diffusing mechanism in dropwise condensation.

Copyright © 1973 by ASME
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