An experimental investigation of the port flow maldistribution in small and large plate package heat exchangers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


An experimental investigation has been carried out to find the flow and the pressure difference across the port to channel in plate heat exchangers for a wide range of Reynolds number. 1000-17000. In the present study, low corrugation angle plates have been used for different number of channels, namely, 20 and 80. Water has been used as working fluid for both hot and cold fluids. The pressure probes are inserted through the plate gasket into both the inlet and exit ports of the channel. The pressure drop is recorded at the first, middle and last channels for each plate package of the heat exchanger. Also. the overall pressure drop has been measured for various flow rates. This overall pressure drop is a function of the flow rate, the cross-sectional area ratio of channel to port and number of channels per fluid. A simplified non-dimensional channel velocity has been suggested based on the channel pressure drop and the mean channel pressure drop of plate package, to measure the deviation of the particular channel flow rate from the mean channel flow rate. The results indicated that the flow maldistribution increases with increasing overall pressure drop in the plate heat exchangers. The experimental results are verified with M.K. Bassiouny and H. Martin's [Chemical Engineering Science 39(4) (1984) 693 and 701] analytical results. (c) 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Energy Engineering


  • process, exchangers, plate heat, pressure drop, maldistribution, flow distribution
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1919-1926
JournalApplied Thermal Engineering
Issue number16
Publication statusPublished - 2006
Publication categoryResearch