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Experimental Study on the Hydrophilic Porous Film Coating for Evaporative Cooling Enhancement  

Lee, Dae-Young (Thermal/Flow Control Research Center, Korea Institute of Science and Technology)
Lee, Jae-Wan (Graduate School of Mechanical Engineerig, Kookmin University)
Kang, Byung-Ha (School of Mechanical and automotive Engineering, Kookmin University)
Publication Information
International Journal of Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration / v.13, no.2, 2005 , pp. 99-106 More about this Journal
Falling film heat transfer has been widely used in many applications in which heat and mass transfer occur simultaneously, such as evaporative coolers, cooling towers, absorption chillers, etc. In such cases, it is desirable that the falling film spreads widely on the surface to form a thin liquid film to enlarge contact surface and to reduce the thermal resistance across the film and/or the flow resistance to the vapor stream over the film. In this respect, hydrophilic treatment of the surface has been tried to improve the surface wettability by decreasing the contact angle between the liquid and the surface. However, the hydrophilic treatment was found not very effective to increase the surface wettedness of inclined surfaces, since the liquid flow forms rivulet patterns instead of a thin film as it flows down the inclined surface and accelerates gradually by the gravity. In this work, a novel method is suggested to improve the surface wettedness enormously. In this work, the surface is treated to have a thin hydrophilic porous layer on the surface. With this treatment, the liquid can spread widely on the surface by the capillary force resulting from the porous structure. In addition to this, the liquid can be held within the porous structure to improve surface wettedness regardless of the surface inclination. The experiment on the evaporative cooling of inclined surfaces has been conducted to verify the effectiveness of the surface treatment. It is measured that the latent heat transfer increases almost by $80\%$ at the hydrophilic porous layer coated surface as compared with the untreated surface.
Evaporative cooling; Wettedness; Porous film coating; Surface characteristics;
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