Two-Phase Heat Transfer in Thermosyphon Evacuated-Tube Solar Collectors

[+] Author and Article Information
Karen R. Den Braven

Mechanical Engineering Department, University of Idaho, Moscow, ID 83843

J. Sol. Energy Eng 111(4), 292-297 (Nov 01, 1989) (6 pages) doi:10.1115/1.3268324 History: Received September 30, 1988; Revised May 23, 1989; Online November 11, 2009


This work analyzes the heat transfer within a tilted thermosyphon and its use in a heat pipe evacuated-tube solar collector. A detailed examination is made of the laminar film condensation process, including the effects of interfacial shear due to the moving vapor. Effects of film surface waves are later included. Including the shear term in the constitutive equations changes the predicted film thickness in the condenser portion of the device by less than one percent, depending on location along the surface. This change causes only a slight increase in the predicted heat transfer. Accounting for surface waves increases the heat transfer rate 10 percent to 50 percent in the Reynolds number range studied. The condenser results are combined with a simple trough model for the evaporator portion of the thermosyphon to give the effective heat-transfer coefficient for the entire tube. Predicted performances of the condenser, the evaporator, and the entire tube compare favorably with available data.

Copyright © 1989 by ASME
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