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Numerical investigation of several twisted tubes with non-conventional tube cross sections on heat transfer and pressure drop

  • B. IndurainEmail author
  • D. Uystepruyst
  • F. Beaubert
  • S. Lalot
  • Á. Helgadóttir
Article
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Abstract

Numerical simulations were performed with the open-source CFD software OpenFOAM to investigate the ability of several configurations of short-length twisted tube geometries with non-circular cross section connected to tubes with circular cross section to induce a swirling flow. The heat transfer and the pressure drop linked to the generated swirling flow are also calculated. The swirling flow is modeled using a k-ω SST turbulence model with a low-Reynolds approach. It is shown that a short-length twisted tube with an elliptical cross section (STE) is able to generate a swirling flow, but its intensity greatly depends on its twist pitch and its aspect ratio. The lower the aspect ratio, the higher the swirl intensity. For a Reynolds number ranging from 10,000 to 100,000, the results reveal that compared to a plain tube, the STE with the lowest aspect ratio achieves enhancing the heat transfer from 22 to 90% at the cost of an increased pressure drop of, respectively, 63 and 129%. The second part of the study is focused on a short-length twisted tube with a three-lobed cross section, and the results reveal that the generated swirling flow is even more intense than with the STE and that the heat transfer enhancement goes from 30 to 105% at the cost of an increased pressure drop from 137 to 180%.

Keywords

Twisted tubes Elliptical Three-lobed Decaying swirling flow Heat transfer CFD 

List of symbols

a

Major axis of the ellipse, m

A

Wetted area, m2

b

Minor axis of the ellipse, m

c

Aspect ratio of the ellipse, dimensionless

cp

Specific heat capacity, J kg−1 K−1

Cf

Skin friction coefficient, dimensionless

Δp

Pressure drop, Pa

Dh

Hydraulic diameter, m

e

Quantity to evaluate for the GCI

f

Friction factor coefficient, dimensionless

GCI

Grid convergence index

h

Heat transfer coefficient, W m−2 K−1

I

Turbulence intensity, dimensionless

k

Turbulent kinetic energy, J kg−1

l

Turbulent mixing length, m

L

Total length of the tested tube, m

m

Mass flow rate, kg s−1

Nu

Nusselt number, dimensionless

P

Twist pitch, m

r

Refinement ratio, dimensionless

Re

Reynolds number, dimensionless

S

Swirl number, dimensionless

T

Temperature, K

U

Fluid velocity, m s−1

Q

Heat flux, W

z

Axial position, m

z*

Dimensionless axial position (z Dh−1)

z1*

Downstream dimensionless axial position z* = 24

α

Order of accuracy for the GCI, dimensionless

λ

Thermal conductivity, W m−1 K−1

μ

Dynamic viscosity, Pa.s

ρ

Fluid density, kg m−3

τw

Wall shear stress, Pa

ω

Turbulent kinetic energy dissipation rate, s−1

Subscript

0

Inlet value

b

Bulk

down

Downstream tube

LMTD

Logarithmic mean temperature difference

in

Inlet of energy balance (z* = 0)

out

Outlet of energy balance (z* = 51)

p

Plain tube

STE

Short element of twisted oval tube

ST3L

Short element of twisted three-lobed tube

tr

Transition tube

up

Upstream tube

w

Wall

Superscripts

¯

Area averaged quantity

Notes

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to thank the financial support of the Association Nationale Recherche Technologie (ANRT) through the CIFRE Grant No. 2017/1437.

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Copyright information

© Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest, Hungary 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • B. Indurain
    • 1
    Email author
  • D. Uystepruyst
    • 1
  • F. Beaubert
    • 1
  • S. Lalot
    • 1
  • Á. Helgadóttir
    • 2
  1. 1.LAMIH UMR CNRS 8201Polytechnic University Hauts-de-FranceValenciennesFrance
  2. 2.Faculty of Industrial Engineering, Mechanical Engineering and Computer ScienceUniversity of IcelandReykjavíkIceland

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