Research Papers: Forced Convection

Stable Nanofluids for Convective Heat Transfer Applications

[+] Author and Article Information
Abhinandan Chiney

e-mail: abhinandan.chiney@gmail.com

Vivek Ganvir

e-mail: vivek.ganvir8@gmail.com

Beena Rai

e-mail: beena.rai@tcs.com


e-mail: pradip.p@tcs.com
Tata Research Development and Design Centre,
54B Hadapsar Industrial Estate,
Pune, Maharashtra 411013, India

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Heat Transfer Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF HEAT TRANSFER. Manuscript received December 19, 2012; final manuscript received August 12, 2013; published online November 14, 2013. Assoc. Editor: Wilson K. S. Chiu.

J. Heat Transfer 136(2), 021704 (Nov 14, 2013) (7 pages) Paper No: HT-12-1666; doi: 10.1115/1.4025502 History: Received December 19, 2012; Revised August 12, 2013

Nanofluids are stable dispersions of ultrafine or nanoscale metallic, metal oxide, ceramic particles in a given base fluid. It is reported that nanofluids register an extraordinarily high level of thermal conductivity, and thus possess immense potential in improvement of heat transfer and energy efficiency of several industrial applications including vehicular cooling in transportation, nuclear reactors, and microelectronics. The key issues with nanofluids are: (i) a robust, cost-effective and scalable method to produce nanofluids to industrial scale has not yet been developed, (ii) stability in industrial applications is not yet established, and (iii) meaningful data in flow based heat transfer process do not exist. The present work attempts to address all these three issues. We have developed an in-situ technique for preparation of stable nanofluids by wet-milling of the metal oxide powder in the base fluid, and in the presence of a suitable dispersant. The nanofluids thus produced are tested for heat transfer efficiency under flow conditions in double pipe heat exchangers. Alumina nanofluids have been found to show enhancements of around 10–60% for various base fluids flown under different flow conditions. Thermal enhancements have been found to depend on the flow-rate, particle concentration, type of base fluid, and material of the thermal contact surface of the heat exchanger. The nanofluids thus obtained exhibit sustained stability (>30 months) and their stability remains unaltered for several heating-cooling cycles.

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Fig. 1

Heat exchanger circuit used for testing properties of nanofluids

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Fig. 2

Size distribution of alumina nanoparticles in various base fluids

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Fig. 3

TEM image of alumina nanoparticles dispersed in water (arrows indicate particles)

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Fig. 4

Citrate molecule on alumina (001) surface with water as solvent

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Fig. 5

Effect of particle concentration on viscosity of alumina-water nanofluid at shear rate of 132 s−1

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Fig. 6

Effect of base fluid on the enhancement in overall heat transfer coefficient of the system

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Fig. 7

Effect of nanoparticles loading on overall heat transfer coefficient at nanofuids flow rate of 50 kg/h

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Fig. 8

Effect of flow rate on the heat transfer enhancement

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Fig. 9

Effect of heat transfer surface on the overall heat transfer coefficient

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Fig. 10

Photographs of 12 month old samples confirming no sedimentation



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