Articles written in Sadhana
Volume 38 Issue 6 December 2013 pp 1135-1171
Vapor-to-liquid phase change in the form of discrete drops on or underneath a substrate is called dropwise condensation. The process is hierarchical in the sense that it occurs over a wide range of length and timescales. As the associated heat transfer coefficient is much higher than the film and mixed mode of condensation, it is of considerable interest in applications. The present study is focused on mathematical modelling of dropwise condensation process at multiple scales. The model includes formation of drops at the atomistic scale, droplet growth, coalescence, instability, slide off and fall-off, followed by fresh nucleation of liquid droplets. The model shows that the largest stable cluster size in the atomic model matches the minimum drop radius estimated from thermodynamic considerations. The minimum drop radius is insensitive to surface texturing and does not provide controllability at larger length and timescales. A closer examination of droplet distribution over the substrate reveals that small drops are locations of high heat transfer rates, which diminishes with increasing drop radius. The largest drop diameter depends on its stability and hence, the interfacial forces at phase boundaries. Therefore, drop instability controls the heat transfer coefficient in dropwise condensation. Enhancement of heat transfer necessitates that these drops grow with time, become unstable and be swept away as quickly as possible. Enhancement may be achieved either by
inclining the substrate or
by creating an interfacial force at the three-phase contact line by a wettability gradient over the horizontal substrate, inducing drop motion.
Wall heat transfer and shear stress under moving drops have been determined using a CFD model. A simple model of coalescence has been adopted in this work. Simulation studies on the effect of fluid properties, surface inclination and its wettability condition on drop size distribution, cycle time, heat transfer coefficient, and wall shear stress are comprehensively discussed in the present article.
Volume 42 Issue 4 April 2017 pp 607-624
Single-phase as well as two-phase fluid flows inside mini/micro-channels and capillary tubes are of practical importance in many miniaturized engineering systems. While several issues related to single-phase transport are fairly well understood, two-phase systems still pose challenges for engineering design. Thepresence of gas–liquid interfaces, dominance of surface forces, moving contact lines, wettability, dynamic contact angle hysteresis and flow in confined geometries are some of the unique features of two-phase systems,which manifest into complex transport phenomena. While Taylor plug/bubble flow is a fairly common flow pattern in several micro-fluidic devices operating at low Bond number, the ensuing transport characteristics are complex and still not fully discerned. This review paper aims at highlighting the nuances and features of a unit cell of a Taylor plug flow, especially focusing on partially wetting systems, which are more common in engineering applications. Emphasis is given to a ‘unit cell’ flow system consisting of an isolated liquid Taylor plug with adjacent gas phase, confined in a capillary tube. Such a seemingly simple flow condition posesconsiderable challenges for discerning and modelling local thermo-hydrodynamic transport coefficients. Relevant background information and fundamentals are carefully scrutinized while summarizing the state-of-the-art. The role of wettability and dissipation near the contact line is highlighted via available experimental andsimulation results. Local momentum and heat transfer exchange processes during the motion of an isolated plug of partially wetting liquid moving inside a capillary tube are delineated.