Parametric study and multiple correlations on air-side heat transfer and friction characteristics of fin-and-tube heat exchangers with large number of large-diameter tube rows
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In the present study, for industrial applications of large inter-coolers employed in multi-stage compressor systems the air-side laminar heat transfer and fluid flow characteristics of plain fin-and-tube heat exchangers with large number of tube rows and large diameter of the tubes arc investigated numerically through three-dimensional simulations based on the SIMPLE algorithm in Cartesian coordinates. The effects of parameters such as Reynolds number, the number of tube rows, tube diameter, tube pitches and fin pitch are examined, and the variations of heat transfer due to variations of fin materials are also observed. It is found that the heat transfer and fluid flow approach fully developed conditions when the number of tube rows is greater than six, and the tube diameter as well as the fin pitch have much more significant effects than the tube pitches, and the heat transfer of high-conductivity material is larger than that of low-conductivity material especially in the high Reynolds number regime. Due to the fact that the existing correlations are not valid for large tube diameters and number of tube rows, the heat transfer and flow friction of the presented heat exchangers are correlated in the multiple forms. The correlation is so obtained that it can be used for further studies such as performance prediction or geometrical optimization. (c) 2008 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.