Title

Performance of a Biologically-Inspired Heat Exchanger with Hierarchical Bifurcating Flow Passages

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2013

Publication Title

Journal of Thermophysics and Heat Transfer

DOI

10.2514/1.T3950

ISSN

1533-6808

Abstract

The performance of a heat exchanger with tree-like flow passages has been examined. The hierarchical bifurcating flow passages in the heat exchanger mimic those seen in the vascular systems of plants and animals. Overall system performance was examined computationally. The results, cast in terms of commonly defined dimensionless parameters, show that system performance can be characterized in a manner similar to traditional compact heat exchanger designs. Previous use of hierarchical bifurcating flow passages for heat exchanger applications has typically been limited to microscale flow networks. The mesoscale flow network examined in this paper resulted in pressure and wall temperature distributions similar to previously studied microscale networks. The mesoscale flow network resulted in a total pressure drop two orders of magnitude smaller and a bulk fluid temperature increase an order of magnitude larger than the microscale flow network under the conditions studied.

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