Research Papers: Natural and Mixed Convection

Simulation of Heat Transfer and System Behavior in a Supercritical CO2 Based Thermosyphon: Effect of Pipe Diameter

[+] Author and Article Information
Lin Chen

Department of Energy and Resources Engineering,  College of Engineering, Peking University, Beijing 100871, China

Xin-Rong Zhang1

Department of Energy and Resources Engineering, College of Engineering, Peking University, Beijing 100871, China; Energy Conversion Research Center, Department of Mechanical Engineering,  Doshisha University, Kyo-Tanabeshi, Kyoto 610-0321, Japanzhxrduph@yahoo.com


Corresponding author.

J. Heat Transfer 133(12), 122505 (Oct 12, 2011) (8 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4004434 History: Received November 20, 2010; Revised June 11, 2011; Published October 12, 2011; Online October 12, 2011

This paper deals with the natural convective circulation thermosyphon with supercritical CO2 flow. New heat transport model aiming at supercritical thermosyphon heat transfer and stability is proposed and numerically studied. Two-dimensional rectangular natural circulation loop model is set up and the effect of pipe diameter is systematically analyzed. Finite volume method is used to solve the conservative equations with supercritical turbulence model incorporated. It is found that supercritical CO2 thermosyphon can achieve high Reynolds flow as 104–105 even temperature differences between source and sink is small. Stabilized flow is found for larger pipe diameter group due to the developed flow field and enhanced heat transfer. Heat transport at cooler side can be enhanced at higher operating temperature and be critical for the stabilization of the supercritical thermosyphon. Correlations of flow and heat transfer are reexamined and good agreements with classical reports are also obtained in the present study.

Copyright © 2011 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Figure 1

Thermal physical properties of CO2 at 9.0MPa

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Figure 2

Schematic of the problem (thermosyphon) studied

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Figure 3

Velocity monitored of cases, (a) D = 6 mm group; (b) D = 15 mm group

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Figure 4

Reynolds number of each case

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Figure 5

Nusselt Number of cases, (a) D = 6 mm group; (b) D = 15 mm group

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Figure 6

Flow field of cases, (a) Heater temperature 343 K; (b) Heater temperature 523 K; (c) Heater temperature 843 K; (d) Heater temperature 1023 K

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Figure 7

Temperature differences across heater and cooler, (a) D = 6 mm group; (b) D = 15 mm group

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Figure 8

Correlated plots for the Reynolds number and modified Grosholf number of cases



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