Measurements of Three-Dimensional Turbulent Air Flow in the Exit Head Section of a Heat Exchanger


Measurements of three-dimensional turbulent flow in the exit head section of a shell-and-tube heat exchanger were performed using three-component laser Doppler velocimeter. The test geometry is half of a hemispherical cap with two outlet-tubes and with a cylindrical inlet section. Distributions of the velocity vector field, the three mean velocity components, and the Reynolds stress components are reported, and the complex nature of flow in the head section and in the neighborhood of the outlet-tube is quantified. The radial and the streamwise velocity components are of the same order of magnitude in the neighboring region of the outlet-tubes, and they are not symmetric relative to the center plane intersection of the outlet-tubes. The friction factor that was measured across the exit head section of the heat exchanger decreases as the Reynolds number increases from 25,000 to 50,000. These results are useful for validating turbulent flow simulation codes and are needed for improving the design of the exit head section of shell-and-tube heat exchangers.


Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Keywords and Phrases

Friction; Heat Exchangers; Pipe Flow; Turbulence

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Document Type

Article - Journal

Document Version


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© 2004 American Institute of Physics (AIP), All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Jan 2004