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Research Papers

Experimental Investigation of Flow Boiling Pressure Drop of R134A in a Microscale Horizontal Smooth Tube

[+] Author and Article Information
Cristiano Bigonha Tibiriçá

Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of São Paulo, Avenida Trabalhador São Carlense 400, 13566-970 São Carlos, SP, Brazilbigonha@sc.usp.br.

Jaqueline Diniz da Silva

Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of São Paulo, Avenida Trabalhador São Carlense 400, 13566-970 São Carlos, SP, Braziljaqueline@sc.usp.br

Gherhardt Ribatski

Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of São Paulo, Avenida Trabalhador São Carlense 400, 13566-970 São Carlos, SP, Brazilribatski@sc.usp.br

J. Thermal Sci. Eng. Appl 3(1), 011006 (Apr 04, 2011) (8 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4003728 History: Received September 13, 2010; Revised February 15, 2011; Published April 04, 2011; Online April 04, 2011

This paper presents new experimental flow boiling pressure drop results in a microscale tube. The experimental data were obtained under diabatic conditions in a horizontal smooth tube with an internal diameter of 2.32 mm. Experiments were performed with R134a as working fluid, mass velocities ranging from 100kg/m2s to 600kg/m2s, heat flux ranging from 10kW/m2 to 55kW/m2, saturation temperatures of 31°C, and exit vapor qualities from 0.20 to 0.99. Flow pattern characterization was also performed from images obtained by high-speed filming. Pressure drop gradients up to 48 kPa/m were measured. These data were carefully analyzed and compared against 13 two-phase frictional pressure drop prediction methods, including both macro- and microscale methods. Comparisons against these methods based on the data segregated according to flow patterns were also performed. Overall, the method by Cioncolini (2009, “Unified Macro-to-Microscale Method to Predict Two-Phase Frictional Pressure Drops of Annular Flows  ,” Int. J. Multiphase Flow, 35, pp. 1138–1148) provided quite accurate predictions of the present database.

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Figures

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Figure 1

Comparison by Felcar and Ribatski (3) between the experimental results from literature and predictions provided by the homogeneous model with the two-phase dynamic viscosity according to Cicchitti (4)

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Figure 2

Schematic diagram of the refrigerant circuit

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Figure 3

Flow pattern visualizations for the present database and their nomenclature, D=2.32 mm(8)

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Figure 4

Evaluation of the heat losses for single-phase flow

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Figure 5

Comparison between the experimental and predicted single-phase pressure drop (Tout=31°C, R245fa (15))

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Figure 6

Mass velocity and vapor quality effects on the frictional pressure drop for Tsat=31°C

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Figure 7

Heat flux effect on the frictional pressure drop for diabatic flow for a saturation temperature at the exit of test section of 31°C

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Figure 8

Comparison of the experimental data and the predictive method of Cioncolini (21) for microscale channels

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Figure 9

Comparison of the experimental data and the predictive method of Lockhart and Martinelli (28)

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Figure 10

Comparison of the experimental data and the predictive method of Mishima and Hibiki (31)

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Figure 11

Comparison of the experimental data and the (27) predictive method of Müller-Steinhagen and Heck

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Figure 12

Comparison of the experimental data and the homogeneous model with the two-phase viscosity proposed by Cicchitti (4)

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