Heat transfer

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Simulation of thermal convection in the Earth's mantle. Colors span from red and green to blue with decreasing temperatures. A hot, less-dense lower boundary layer sends plumes of hot material upwards, and cold material from the top moves downwards. Convection-snapshot.png
Simulation of thermal convection in the Earth's mantle. Colors span from red and green to blue with decreasing temperatures. A hot, less-dense lower boundary layer sends plumes of hot material upwards, and cold material from the top moves downwards.

Heat transfer is a discipline of thermal engineering that concerns the generation, use, conversion, and exchange of thermal energy (heat) between physical systems. Heat transfer is classified into various mechanisms, such as thermal conduction, thermal convection, thermal radiation, and transfer of energy by phase changes. Engineers also consider the transfer of mass of differing chemical species, either cold or hot, to achieve heat transfer. While these mechanisms have distinct characteristics, they often occur simultaneously in the same system.

Thermal Engineering is a specialized sub-discipline of mechanical engineering that deals with the movement of heat energy and transfer. The energy can be transformed between two mediums or transferred into other forms of energy. A thermal engineer will have knowledge of thermodynamics and the process to convert generated energy from thermal sources into chemical, mechanical, or electrical energy. Many process plants use a wide variety of machines that utilize components that use heat transfer in some way. Many plants use heat exchangers in their operations. A thermal engineer must allow the proper amount of energy to be transferred for correct use. To much and the components could fail, too little and the system will not function at all. Thermal engineers must have an understanding of economics and the components that they will be servicing or interacting with. Some components that a thermal engineer could work with include heat exchangers, heat sinks, bi-metals strips, radiators and many more. Some systems that require a thermal engineer include; Boilers, heat pumps, water pumps, engines, and more.

Thermal energy internal energy present in a system due to its temperature; is not a state function

Thermal energy can refer to several distinct thermodynamic quantities, such as the internal energy of a system; heat or sensible heat, which are defined as types of transfer of energy ; or for the characteristic energy of a degree of freedom in a thermal system , where is temperature and is the Boltzmann constant.

Heat energy transfer process, or its amount (and direction), that is associated with a temperature difference

In thermodynamics, heat is energy in transfer to or from a thermodynamic system, by mechanisms other than thermodynamic work or transfer of matter. The mechanisms include conduction, through direct contact of immobile bodies, or through a wall or barrier that is impermeable to matter; or radiation between separated bodies; or isochoric mechanical work done by the surroundings on the system of interest; or Joule heating by an electric current driven through the system of interest by an external system; or a combination of these. When there is a suitable path between two systems with different temperatures, heat transfer occurs necessarily, immediately, and spontaneously from the hotter to the colder system. Thermal conduction occurs by the stochastic (random) motion of microscopic particles. In contrast, thermodynamic work is defined by mechanisms that act macroscopically and directly on the system's whole-body state variables; for example, change of the system's volume through a piston's motion with externally measurable force; or change of the system's internal electric polarization through an externally measurable change in electric field. The definition of heat transfer does not require that the process be in any sense smooth. For example, a bolt of lightning may transfer heat to a body.

Contents

Heat conduction, also called diffusion, is the direct microscopic exchange of kinetic energy of particles through the boundary between two systems. When an object is at a different temperature from another body or its surroundings, heat flows so that the body and the surroundings reach the same temperature, at which point they are in thermal equilibrium. Such spontaneous heat transfer always occurs from a region of high temperature to another region of lower temperature, as described in the second law of thermodynamics.

Temperature physical property of matter that quantitatively expresses the common notions of hot and cold

Temperature is a physical quantity expressing hot and cold. It is measured with a thermometer calibrated in one or more temperature scales. The most commonly used scales are the Celsius scale, Fahrenheit scale, and Kelvin scale. The kelvin is the unit of temperature in the International System of Units (SI), in which temperature is one of the seven fundamental base quantities. The Kelvin scale is widely used in science and technology.

Two physical systems are in thermal equilibrium if there is no net flow of thermal energy between them when they are connected by a path permeable to heat. Thermal equilibrium obeys the zeroth law of thermodynamics. A system is said to be in thermal equilibrium with itself if the temperature within the system is spatially uniform and temporally constant.

Second law of thermodynamics law of physics stating that systems spontaneously evolve towards states of higher entropy

The second law of thermodynamics states that the total entropy of an isolated system can never decrease over time. The total entropy of a system and its surroundings can remain constant in ideal cases where the system is in thermodynamic equilibrium, or is undergoing a (fictive) reversible process. In all processes that occur, including spontaneous processes, the total entropy of the system and its surroundings increases and the process is irreversible in the thermodynamic sense. The increase in entropy accounts for the irreversibility of natural processes, and the asymmetry between future and past.

Heat convection occurs when bulk flow of a fluid (gas or liquid) carries heat along with the flow of matter in the fluid. The flow of fluid may be forced by external processes, or sometimes (in gravitational fields) by buoyancy forces caused when thermal energy expands the fluid (for example in a fire plume), thus influencing its own transfer. The latter process is often called "natural convection". All convective processes also move heat partly by diffusion, as well. Another form of convection is forced convection. In this case the fluid is forced to flow by use of a pump, fan or other mechanical means.

Thermal radiation occurs through a vacuum or any transparent medium (solid or fluid or gas). It is the transfer of energy by means of photons in electromagnetic waves governed by the same laws. [1]

Vacuum Space that is empty of matter

Vacuum is space devoid of matter. The word stems from the Latin adjective vacuus for "vacant" or "void". An approximation to such vacuum is a region with a gaseous pressure much less than atmospheric pressure. Physicists often discuss ideal test results that would occur in a perfect vacuum, which they sometimes simply call "vacuum" or free space, and use the term partial vacuum to refer to an actual imperfect vacuum as one might have in a laboratory or in space. In engineering and applied physics on the other hand, vacuum refers to any space in which the pressure is lower than atmospheric pressure. The Latin term in vacuo is used to describe an object that is surrounded by a vacuum.

An optical medium is material through which electromagnetic waves propagate. It is a form of transmission medium. The permittivity and permeability of the medium define how electromagnetic waves propagate in it. The medium has an intrinsic impedance, given by

Solid solid object

Solid is one of the four fundamental states of matter. In solids molecules are closely packed. It is characterized by structural rigidity and resistance to changes of shape or volume. Unlike liquid, a solid object does not flow to take on the shape of its container, nor does it expand to fill the entire volume available to it like a gas does. The atoms in a solid are tightly bound to each other, either in a regular geometric lattice or irregularly. Solids cannot be compressed with little pressure whereas gases can be compressed with little pressure because in gases molecules are loosely packed.

Overview

Earth's long wave thermal radiation intensity, from clouds, atmosphere and surface. Erbe.gif
Earth's long wave thermal radiation intensity, from clouds, atmosphere and surface.

Heat is defined in physics as the transfer of thermal energy across a well-defined boundary around a thermodynamic system. The thermodynamic free energy is the amount of work that a thermodynamic system can perform. Enthalpy is a thermodynamic potential, designated by the letter "H", that is the sum of the internal energy of the system (U) plus the product of pressure (P) and volume (V). Joule is a unit to quantify energy, work, or the amount of heat.

Thermodynamic system precisely specified macroscopic region of the universe, defined by boundaries

A thermodynamic system is a group of material and/or radiative contents. Its properties may be described by thermodynamic state variables such as temperature, entropy, internal energy, and pressure.

Thermodynamic free energy

The thermodynamic free energy is a concept useful in the thermodynamics of chemical or thermal processes in engineering and science. The change in the free energy is the maximum amount of work that a thermodynamic system can perform in a process at constant temperature, and its sign indicates whether a process is thermodynamically favorable or forbidden. Since free energy usually contains potential energy, it is not absolute but depends on the choice of a zero point. Therefore, only relative free energy values, or changes in free energy, are physically meaningful.

Enthalpy measurement of energy in a thermodynamic system; thermodynamic quantity equivalent to the total heat content of a system

Enthalpy, a property of a thermodynamic system, is equal to the system's internal energy plus the product of its pressure and volume. In a system enclosed so as to prevent matter transfer, for processes at constant pressure, the heat absorbed or released equals the change in enthalpy.

Heat transfer is a process function (or path function), as opposed to functions of state; therefore, the amount of heat transferred in a thermodynamic process that changes the state of a system depends on how that process occurs, not only the net difference between the initial and final states of the process.

Process function property of a thermodynamic process; depends on the historical path of system states, not just on the current system state

In thermodynamics, a quantity that is well defined so as to describe the path of a process through the equilibrium state space of a thermodynamic system is termed a process function, or, alternatively, a process quantity, or a path function. As an example, mechanical work and heat are process functions because they describe quantitatively the transition between equilibrium states of a thermodynamic system.

Thermodynamic process energetic development of a thermodynamic system proceeding from an initial state to a final state

Classical thermodynamics considers three main kinds of thermodynamic process: change in a system, cycles in a system, and flow processes.

Thermodynamic state state of a thermodynamic system at some point in time; variables/properties comprising the state

For thermodynamics, a thermodynamic state of a system is its condition at a specific time sheik, that is fully identified by values of a suitable set of parameters known as state variables, state parameters or thermodynamic variables. Once such a set of values of thermodynamic variables has been specified for a system, the values of all thermodynamic properties of the system are uniquely determined. Usually, by default, a thermodynamic state is taken to be one of thermodynamic equilibrium. This means that the state is not merely the condition of the system at a specific time, but that the condition is the same, unchanging, over an indefinitely long duration of time.

Thermodynamic and mechanical heat transfer is calculated with the heat transfer coefficient, the proportionality between the heat flux and the thermodynamic driving force for the flow of heat. Heat flux is a quantitative, vectorial representation of heat-flow through a surface. [2]

Mechanical engineering discipline of engineering

Mechanical engineering is the discipline that applies engineering, physics, engineering mathematics, and materials science principles to design, analyze, manufacture, and maintain mechanical systems. It is one of the oldest and broadest of the engineering disciplines.

The heat transfer coefficient or film coefficient, or film effectiveness, in thermodynamics and in mechanics is the proportionality constant between the heat flux and the thermodynamic driving force for the flow of heat :

Proportionality (mathematics) In mathematics, two variables are proportional if a change in one is always accompanied by a change in the other, and if the changes are always related by use of a constant.

In mathematics, two varying quantities are said to be in a relation of proportionality, if they are multiplicatively connected to a constant, that is, when either their ratio or their product yields a constant. The value of this constant is called the coefficient of proportionality or proportionality constant.

In engineering contexts, the term heat is taken as synonymous to thermal energy. This usage has its origin in the historical interpretation of heat as a fluid (Caloric) that can be transferred by various causes, [3] and that is also common in the language of laymen and everyday life.

The transport equations for thermal energy (Fourier's law), mechanical momentum (Newton's law for fluids), and mass transfer (Fick's laws of diffusion) are similar, [4] [5] and analogies among these three transport processes have been developed to facilitate prediction of conversion from any one to the others. [5]

Thermal engineering concerns the generation, use, conversion, and exchange of heat transfer. As such, heat transfer is involved in almost every sector of the economy. [6] Heat transfer is classified into various mechanisms, such as thermal conduction, thermal convection, thermal radiation, and transfer of energy by phase changes.

Mechanisms

The fundamental modes of heat transfer are:

Advection
Advection is the transport mechanism of a fluid from one location to another, and is dependent on motion and momentum of that fluid.
Conduction or diffusion
The transfer of energy between objects that are in physical contact. Thermal conductivity is the property of a material to conduct heat and evaluated primarily in terms of Fourier's Law for heat conduction.
Convection
The transfer of energy between an object and its environment, due to fluid motion. The average temperature is a reference for evaluating properties related to convective heat transfer.
Radiation
The transfer of energy by the emission of electromagnetic radiation.

Advection

By transferring matter, energy—including thermal energy—is moved by the physical transfer of a hot or cold object from one place to another. [7] This can be as simple as placing hot water in a bottle and heating a bed, or the movement of an iceberg in changing ocean currents. A practical example is thermal hydraulics.[ citation needed ] This can be described by the formula:

where

Conduction

On a microscopic scale, heat conduction occurs as hot, rapidly moving or vibrating atoms and molecules interact with neighboring atoms and molecules, transferring some of their energy (heat) to these neighboring particles. In other words, heat is transferred by conduction when adjacent atoms vibrate against one another, or as electrons move from one atom to another. Conduction is the most significant means of heat transfer within a solid or between solid objects in thermal contact. Fluids—especially gases—are less conductive. Thermal contact conductance is the study of heat conduction between solid bodies in contact. [8] The process of heat transfer from one place to another place without the movement of particles is called conduction. Example: Heat transfer through Metal rods.[ clarification needed ]Steady state conduction (see Fourier's law) is a form of conduction that happens when the temperature difference driving the conduction is constant, so that after an equilibration time, the spatial distribution of temperatures in the conducting object does not change any further. [9] In steady state conduction, the amount of heat entering a section is equal to amount of heat coming out. [8]

Transient conduction (see Heat equation) occurs when the temperature within an object changes as a function of time. Analysis of transient systems is more complex and often calls for the application of approximation theories or numerical analysis by computer. [8]

Convection

The flow of fluid may be forced by external processes, or sometimes (in gravitational fields) by buoyancy forces caused when thermal energy expands the fluid (for example in a fire plume), thus influencing its own transfer. The latter process is often called "natural convection". All convective processes also move heat partly by diffusion, as well. Another form of convection is forced convection. In this case the fluid is forced to flow by using a pump, fan or other mechanical means.

Convective heat transfer, or convection, is the transfer of heat from one place to another by the movement of fluids, a process that is essentially the transfer of heat via mass transfer. Bulk motion of fluid enhances heat transfer in many physical situations, such as (for example) between a solid surface and the fluid. [10] Convection is usually the dominant form of heat transfer in liquids and gases. Although sometimes discussed as a third method of heat transfer, convection is usually used to describe the combined effects of heat conduction within the fluid (diffusion) and heat transference by bulk fluid flow streaming. [11] The process of transport by fluid streaming is known as advection, but pure advection is a term that is generally associated only with mass transport in fluids, such as advection of pebbles in a river. In the case of heat transfer in fluids, where transport by advection in a fluid is always also accompanied by transport via heat diffusion (also known as heat conduction) the process of heat convection is understood to refer to the sum of heat transport by advection and diffusion/conduction.

Free, or natural, convection occurs when bulk fluid motions (streams and currents) are caused by buoyancy forces that result from density variations due to variations of temperature in the fluid. Forced convection is a term used when the streams and currents in the fluid are induced by external means—such as fans, stirrers, and pumps—creating an artificially induced convection current. [12]

Convection-cooling

Convective cooling is sometimes described as Newton's law of cooling:

The rate of heat loss of a body is proportional to the temperature difference between the body and its surroundings.

However, by definition, the validity of Newton's law of Cooling requires that the rate of heat loss from convection be a linear function of ("proportional to") the temperature difference that drives heat transfer, and in convective cooling this is sometimes not the case. In general, convection is not linearly dependent on temperature gradients, and in some cases is strongly nonlinear. In these cases, Newton's law does not apply.

Convection vs. conduction

In a body of fluid that is heated from underneath its container, conduction and convection can be considered to compete for dominance. If heat conduction is too great, fluid moving down by convection is heated by conduction so fast that its downward movement will be stopped due to its buoyancy, while fluid moving up by convection is cooled by conduction so fast that its driving buoyancy will diminish. On the other hand, if heat conduction is very low, a large temperature gradient may be formed and convection might be very strong.

The Rayleigh number () is the product of the Grashof () and Prandtl () numbers. It is a measure which determines the relative strength of conduction and convection. [13]

where

The Rayleigh number can be understood as the ratio between the rate of heat transfer by convection to the rate of heat transfer by conduction; or, equivalently, the ratio between the corresponding timescales (i.e. conduction timescale divided by convection timescale), up to a numerical factor. This can be seen as follows, where all calculations are up to numerical factors depending on the geometry of the system.

The buoyancy force driving the convection is roughly , so the corresponding pressure is roughly . In steady state, this is canceled by the shear stress due to viscosity, and therefore roughly equals , where V is the typical fluid velocity due to convection and the order of its timescale.[ citation needed ] The conduction timescale, on the other hand, is of the order of .

Convection occurs when the Rayleigh number is above 1,000–2,000.

Radiation

Red-hot iron object, transferring heat to the surrounding environment through thermal radiation Hot metalwork.jpg
Red-hot iron object, transferring heat to the surrounding environment through thermal radiation

Thermal radiation occurs through a vacuum or any transparent medium (solid or fluid or gas). It is the transfer of energy by means of photons in electromagnetic waves governed by the same laws. [1]

Thermal radiation is energy emitted by matter as electromagnetic waves, due to the pool of thermal energy in all matter with a temperature above absolute zero. Thermal radiation propagates without the presence of matter through the vacuum of space. [14]

Thermal radiation is a direct result of the random movements of atoms and molecules in matter. Since these atoms and molecules are composed of charged particles (protons and electrons), their movement results in the emission of electromagnetic radiation, which carries energy away from the surface.

The Stefan-Boltzmann equation, which describes the rate of transfer of radiant energy, is as follows for an object in a vacuum :

For radiative transfer between two objects, the equation is as follows:

where

Radiation is typically only important for very hot objects, or for objects with a large temperature difference.

Radiation from the sun, or solar radiation, can be harvested for heat and power. [16] Unlike conductive and convective forms of heat transfer, thermal radiation can be concentrated in a small spot by using reflecting mirrors, which is exploited in concentrating solar power generation. [17] For example, the sunlight reflected from mirrors heats the PS10 solar power tower and during the day it can heat water to 285 °C (545 °F).[ citation needed ]

Phase transition

Lightning is a highly visible form of energy transfer and is an example of plasma present at Earth's surface. Typically, lightning discharges 30,000 amperes at up to 100 million volts, and emits light, radio waves, X-rays and even gamma rays. Plasma temperatures in lightning can approach 28,000 kelvins (27,726.85 degC) (49,940.33 degF) and electron densities may exceed 10 m . Lightning in Arlington.jpg
Lightning is a highly visible form of energy transfer and is an example of plasma present at Earth's surface. Typically, lightning discharges 30,000 amperes at up to 100 million volts, and emits light, radio waves, X-rays and even gamma rays. Plasma temperatures in lightning can approach 28,000 kelvins (27,726.85 °C) (49,940.33 °F) and electron densities may exceed 10 m .

Phase transition or phase change, takes place in a thermodynamic system from one phase or state of matter to another one by heat transfer. Phase change examples are the melting of ice or the boiling of water. The Mason equation explains the growth of a water droplet based on the effects of heat transport on evaporation and condensation.

Phase transitions involve the four fundamental states of matter:

Boiling

Nucleate boiling of water. Kochendes wasser02.jpg
Nucleate boiling of water.

The boiling point of a substance is the temperature at which the vapor pressure of the liquid equals the pressure surrounding the liquid [19] [20] and the liquid evaporates resulting in an abrupt change in vapor volume.

Saturation temperature means boiling point. The saturation temperature is the temperature for a corresponding saturation pressure at which a liquid boils into its vapor phase. The liquid can be said to be saturated with thermal energy. Any addition of thermal energy results in a phase transition.

At standard atmospheric pressure and low temperatures, no boiling occurs and the heat transfer rate is controlled by the usual single-phase mechanisms. As the surface temperature is increased, local boiling occurs and vapor bubbles nucleate, grow into the surrounding cooler fluid, and collapse. This is sub-cooled nucleate boiling, and is a very efficient heat transfer mechanism. At high bubble generation rates, the bubbles begin to interfere and the heat flux no longer increases rapidly with surface temperature (this is the departure from nucleate boiling, or DNB).

At similar standard atmospheric pressure and high temperatures, the hydrodynamically-quieter regime of film boiling is reached. Heat fluxes across the stable vapor layers are low, but rise slowly with temperature. Any contact between fluid and the surface that may be seen probably leads to the extremely rapid nucleation of a fresh vapor layer ("spontaneous nucleation"). At higher temperatures still, a maximum in the heat flux is reached (the critical heat flux, or CHF).

The Leidenfrost Effect demonstrates how nucleate boiling slows heat transfer due to gas bubbles on the heater's surface. As mentioned, gas-phase thermal conductivity is much lower than liquid-phase thermal conductivity, so the outcome is a kind of "gas thermal barrier".

Condensation

Condensation occurs when a vapor is cooled and changes its phase to a liquid. During condensation, the latent heat of vaporization must be released. The amount of the heat is the same as that absorbed during vaporization at the same fluid pressure. [21]

There are several types of condensation:

Dropwise condensation is difficult to sustain reliably; therefore, industrial equipment is normally designed to operate in filmwise condensation mode.

Melting

Ice melting Melting icecubes.gif
Ice melting

Melting is a thermal process that results in the phase transition of a substance from a solid to a liquid. The internal energy of a substance is increased, typically with heat or pressure, resulting in a rise of its temperature to the melting point, at which the ordering of ionic or molecular entities in the solid breaks down to a less ordered state and the solid liquefies. Molten substances generally have reduced viscosity with elevated temperature; an exception to this maxim is the element sulfur, whose viscosity increases to a point due to polymerization and then decreases with higher temperatures in its molten state. [22]

Modeling approaches

Heat transfer can be modeled in various ways.

Heat equation

The heat equation is an important partial differential equation that describes the distribution of heat (or variation in temperature) in a given region over time. In some cases, exact solutions of the equation are available; [23] in other cases the equation must be solved numerically using computational methods.

Lumped system analysis

Lumped system analysis often reduces the complexity of the equations to one first-order linear differential equation, in which case heating and cooling are described by a simple exponential solution, often referred to as Newton's law of cooling.

System analysis by the lumped capacitance model is a common approximation in transient conduction that may be used whenever heat conduction within an object is much faster than heat conduction across the boundary of the object. This is a method of approximation that reduces one aspect of the transient conduction system—that within the object—to an equivalent steady state system. That is, the method assumes that the temperature within the object is completely uniform, although its value may be changing in time.

In this method, the ratio of the conductive heat resistance within the object to the convective heat transfer resistance across the object's boundary, known as the Biot number , is calculated. For small Biot numbers, the approximation of spatially uniform temperature within the object can be used: it can be presumed that heat transferred into the object has time to uniformly distribute itself, due to the lower resistance to doing so, as compared with the resistance to heat entering the object. [24]

Climate models

Climate models study the radiant heat transfer by using quantitative methods to simulate the interactions of the atmosphere, oceans, land surface, and ice.

Engineering

Heat exposure as part of a fire test for firestop products Nelson tulsa test.jpg
Heat exposure as part of a fire test for firestop products

Heat transfer has broad application to the functioning of numerous devices and systems. Heat-transfer principles may be used to preserve, increase, or decrease temperature in a wide variety of circumstances.[ citation needed ] Heat transfer methods are used in numerous disciplines, such as automotive engineering, thermal management of electronic devices and systems, climate control, insulation, materials processing, and power station engineering.

Insulation, radiance and resistance

Thermal insulators are materials specifically designed to reduce the flow of heat by limiting conduction, convection, or both. Thermal resistance is a heat property and the measurement by which an object or material resists to heat flow (heat per time unit or thermal resistance) to temperature difference.

Radiance or spectral radiance are measures of the quantity of radiation that passes through or is emitted. Radiant barriers are materials that reflect radiation, and therefore reduce the flow of heat from radiation sources. Good insulators are not necessarily good radiant barriers, and vice versa. Metal, for instance, is an excellent reflector and a poor insulator.

The effectiveness of a radiant barrier is indicated by its reflectivity, which is the fraction of radiation reflected. A material with a high reflectivity (at a given wavelength) has a low emissivity (at that same wavelength), and vice versa. At any specific wavelength, reflectivity=1 - emissivity. An ideal radiant barrier would have a reflectivity of 1, and would therefore reflect 100 percent of incoming radiation. Vacuum flasks, or Dewars, are silvered to approach this ideal. In the vacuum of space, satellites use multi-layer insulation, which consists of many layers of aluminized (shiny) Mylar to greatly reduce radiation heat transfer and control satellite temperature.[ citation needed ]

Devices

Schematic flow of energy in a heat engine. Heat engine.png
Schematic flow of energy in a heat engine.

A heat engine is a system that performs the conversion of a flow of thermal energy (heat) to mechanical energy to perform mechanical work. [25] [26]

A thermocouple is a temperature-measuring device and widely used type of temperature sensor for measurement and control, and can also be used to convert heat into electric power.

A thermoelectric cooler is a solid state electronic device that pumps (transfers) heat from one side of the device to the other when electric current is passed through it. It is based on the Peltier effect.

A thermal diode or thermal rectifier is a device that causes heat to flow preferentially in one direction.

Heat exchangers

A heat exchanger is used for more efficient heat transfer or to dissipate heat. Heat exchangers are widely used in refrigeration, air conditioning, space heating, power generation, and chemical processing. One common example of a heat exchanger is a car's radiator, in which the hot coolant fluid is cooled by the flow of air over the radiator's surface.[ citation needed ] [27]

Common types of heat exchanger flows include parallel flow, counter flow, and cross flow. In parallel flow, both fluids move in the same direction while transferring heat; in counter flow, the fluids move in opposite directions; and in cross flow, the fluids move at right angles to each other. Common types of heat exchangers include shell and tube, double pipe, extruded finned pipe, spiral fin pipe, u-tube, and stacked plate. Each type has certain advantages and disadvantages over other types.[ further explanation needed ]

A heat sink is a component that transfers heat generated within a solid material to a fluid medium, such as air or a liquid. Examples of heat sinks are the heat exchangers used in refrigeration and air conditioning systems or the radiator in a car. A heat pipe is another heat-transfer device that combines thermal conductivity and phase transition to efficiently transfer heat between two solid interfaces.

Applications

Architecture

Efficient energy use is the goal to reduce the amount of energy required in heating or cooling. In architecture, condensation and air currents can cause cosmetic or structural damage. An energy audit can help to assess the implementation of recommended corrective procedures. For instance, insulation improvements, air sealing of structural leaks or the addition of energy-efficient windows and doors. [28]

Climate engineering

An example application in climate engineering includes the creation of Biochar through the pyrolysis process. Thus, storing greenhouse gases in carbon reduces the radiative forcing capacity in the atmosphere, causing more long-wave (infrared) radiation out to Space. Biochar.jpg
An example application in climate engineering includes the creation of Biochar through the pyrolysis process. Thus, storing greenhouse gases in carbon reduces the radiative forcing capacity in the atmosphere, causing more long-wave (infrared) radiation out to Space.

Climate engineering consists of carbon dioxide removal and solar radiation management. Since the amount of carbon dioxide determines the radiative balance of Earth atmosphere, carbon dioxide removal techniques can be applied to reduce the radiative forcing. Solar radiation management is the attempt to absorb less solar radiation to offset the effects of greenhouse gases.

Greenhouse effect

A representation of the exchanges of energy between the source (the Sun), the Earth's surface, the Earth's atmosphere, and the ultimate sink outer space. The ability of the atmosphere to capture and recycle energy emitted by the Earth surface is the defining characteristic of the greenhouse effect. The green house effect.svg
A representation of the exchanges of energy between the source (the Sun), the Earth's surface, the Earth's atmosphere, and the ultimate sink outer space. The ability of the atmosphere to capture and recycle energy emitted by the Earth surface is the defining characteristic of the greenhouse effect.

The greenhouse effect is a process by which thermal radiation from a planetary surface is absorbed by atmospheric greenhouse gases, and is re-radiated in all directions. Since part of this re-radiation is back towards the surface and the lower atmosphere, it results in an elevation of the average surface temperature above what it would be in the absence of the gases.

Heat transfer in the human body

The principles of heat transfer in engineering systems can be applied to the human body in order to determine how the body transfers heat. Heat is produced in the body by the continuous metabolism of nutrients which provides energy for the systems of the body. [29] The human body must maintain a consistent internal temperature in order to maintain healthy bodily functions. Therefore, excess heat must be dissipated from the body to keep it from overheating. When a person engages in elevated levels of physical activity, the body requires additional fuel which increases the metabolic rate and the rate of heat production. The body must then use additional methods to remove the additional heat produced in order to keep the internal temperature at a healthy level.

Heat transfer by convection is driven by the movement of fluids over the surface of the body. This convective fluid can be either a liquid or a gas. For heat transfer from the outer surface of the body, the convection mechanism is dependent on the surface area of the body, the velocity of the air, and the temperature gradient between the surface of the skin and the ambient air. [30] The normal temperature of the body is approximately 37 °C. Heat transfer occurs more readily when the temperature of the surroundings is significantly less than the normal body temperature. This concept explains why a person feels cold when not enough covering is worn when exposed to a cold environment. Clothing can be considered an insulator which provides thermal resistance to heat flow over the covered portion of the body. [31] This thermal resistance causes the temperature on the surface of the clothing to be less than the temperature on the surface of the skin. This smaller temperature gradient between the surface temperature and the ambient temperature will cause a lower rate of heat transfer than if the skin were not covered.

In order to ensure that one portion of the body is not significantly hotter than another portion, heat must be distributed evenly through the bodily tissues. Blood flowing through blood vessels acts as a convective fluid and helps to prevent any buildup of excess heat inside the tissues of the body. This flow of blood through the vessels can be modeled as pipe flow in an engineering system. The heat carried by the blood is determined by the temperature of the surrounding tissue, the diameter of the blood vessel, the thickness of the fluid, velocity of the flow, and the heat transfer coefficient of the blood. The velocity, blood vessel diameter, and the fluid thickness can all be related with the Reynolds Number, a dimensionless number used in fluid mechanics to characterize the flow of fluids.

Latent heat loss, also known as evaporative heat loss, accounts for a large fraction of heat loss from the body. When the core temperature of the body increases, the body triggers sweat glands in the skin to bring additional moisture to the surface of the skin. The liquid is then transformed into vapor which removes heat from the surface of the body. [32] The rate of evaporation heat loss is directly related to the vapor pressure at the skin surface and the amount of moisture present on the skin. [30] Therefore, the maximum of heat transfer will occur when the skin is completely wet. The body continuously loses water by evaporation but the most significant amount of heat loss occurs during periods of increased physical activity.

Cooling techniques

Evaporative cooling

A traditional air cooler in Mirzapur, Uttar Pradesh, India Air cooler.jpg
A traditional air cooler in Mirzapur, Uttar Pradesh, India

Evaporative cooling happens when water vapor is added to the surrounding air. The energy needed to evaporate the water is taken from the air in the form of sensible heat and converted into latent heat, while the air remains at a constant enthalpy. Latent heat describes the amount of heat that is needed to evaporate the liquid; this heat comes from the liquid itself and the surrounding gas and surfaces. The greater the difference between the two temperatures, the greater the evaporative cooling effect. When the temperatures are the same, no net evaporation of water in air occurs; thus, there is no cooling effect.

Laser cooling

In quantum physics, laser cooling is used to achieve temperatures of near absolute zero (−273.15 °C, −459.67 °F) of atomic and molecular samples to observe unique quantum effects that can only occur at this heat level.

  • Doppler cooling is the most common method of laser cooling.
  • Sympathetic cooling is a process in which particles of one type cool particles of another type. Typically, atomic ions that can be directly laser-cooled are used to cool nearby ions or atoms. This technique allows cooling of ions and atoms that cannot be laser cooled directly.[ citation needed ]

Magnetic cooling

Magnetic evaporative cooling is a process for lowering the temperature of a group of atoms, after pre-cooled by methods such as laser cooling. Magnetic refrigeration cools below 0.3K, by making use of the magnetocaloric effect.

Radiative cooling

Radiative cooling is the process by which a body loses heat by radiation. Outgoing energy is an important effect in the Earth's energy budget. In the case of the Earth-atmosphere system, it refers to the process by which long-wave (infrared) radiation is emitted to balance the absorption of short-wave (visible) energy from the Sun. Convective transport of heat and evaporative transport of latent heat both remove heat from the surface and redistribute it in the atmosphere.

Thermal energy storage

Thermal energy storage includes technologies for collecting and storing energy for later use. It may be employed to balance energy demand between day and nighttime. The thermal reservoir may be maintained at a temperature above or below that of the ambient environment. Applications include space heating, domestic or process hot water systems, or generating electricity.

See also

Related Research Articles

Evaporation Type of vaporization of a liquid that occurs from its surface; surface phenomenon

Evaporation is a type of vaporization that occurs on the surface of a liquid as it changes into the gas phase. The surrounding gas must not be saturated with the evaporating substance. When the molecules of the liquid collide, they transfer energy to each other based on how they collide with each other. When a molecule near the surface absorbs enough energy to overcome the vapor pressure, it will escape and enter the surrounding air as a gas. When evaporation occurs, the energy removed from the vaporized liquid will reduce the temperature of the liquid, resulting in evaporative cooling.

Heat engine system that performs the conversion of heat or thermal energy to mechanical work

In thermodynamics and engineering, a heat engine is a system that converts heat or thermal energy—and chemical energy—to mechanical energy, which can then be used to do mechanical work. It does this by bringing a working substance from a higher state temperature to a lower state temperature. A heat source generates thermal energy that brings the working substance to the high temperature state. The working substance generates work in the working body of the engine while transferring heat to the colder sink until it reaches a low temperature state. During this process some of the thermal energy is converted into work by exploiting the properties of the working substance. The working substance can be any system with a non-zero heat capacity, but it usually is a gas or liquid. During this process, a lot of heat is lost to the surroundings and so cannot be converted to work.

Convection movement of groups of molecules within fluids such as liquids or gases, and within rheids; takes place through advection, diffusion or both

Convection is the heat transfer due to the bulk movement of molecules within fluids such as gases and liquids, including molten rock (rheid). Convection includes sub-mechanisms of advection, and diffusion.

Thermal insulation technique used to minimize the heating demand of buildings

Thermal insulation is the reduction of heat transfer between objects in thermal contact or in range of radiative influence. Thermal insulation can be achieved with specially engineered methods or processes, as well as with suitable object shapes and materials.

Thermal conduction is the transfer of heat by microscopic collisions of particles and movement of electrons within an organ. The microscopically colliding particles, that include molecules, atoms and electrons, transfer disorganized microscopic kinetic and potential energy, jointly known as internal energy. Conduction takes place in all phases of matter including solids, liquids, gases and waves. The rate at which energy is conducted as heat between two bodies is a function of the temperature difference between the two bodies and the properties of the conductive medium through which the heat is transferred.

Newton's law of cooling states that the rate of heat loss of a body is directly proportional to the difference in the temperatures between the body and its surroundings provided the temperature difference is small and the nature of radiating surface remains same. As such, it is equivalent to a statement that the heat transfer coefficient, which mediates between heat losses and temperature differences, is a constant. This condition is generally true in thermal conduction, but it is often only approximately true in conditions of convective heat transfer, where a number of physical processes make effective heat transfer coefficients somewhat dependent on temperature differences. Finally, in the case of heat transfer by thermal radiation, Newton's law of cooling is not true.

Heat exchanger piece of equipment built for efficient heat transfer from one medium to another

A heat exchanger is a device used to transfer heat between two or more fluids. Heat exchangers are used in both cooling and heating processes. The fluids may be separated by a solid wall to prevent mixing or they may be in direct contact. They are widely used in space heating, refrigeration, air conditioning, power stations, chemical plants, petrochemical plants, petroleum refineries, natural-gas processing, and sewage treatment. The classic example of a heat exchanger is found in an internal combustion engine in which a circulating fluid known as engine coolant flows through radiator coils and air flows past the coils, which cools the coolant and heats the incoming air. Another example is the heat sink, which is a passive heat exchanger that transfers the heat generated by an electronic or a mechanical device to a fluid medium, often air or a liquid coolant.

Latent heat

Latent heat is thermal energy released or absorbed, by a body or a thermodynamic system, during a constant-temperature process — usually a first-order phase transition.

The lapse rate is the rate at which an atmospheric variable, normally temperature in Earth's atmosphere, changes with altitude. Lapse rate arises from the word lapse, in the sense of a gradual change. It corresponds to the vertical component of the spatial gradient of temperature. Although this concept is most often applied to the Earth's troposphere, it can be extended to any gravitationally supported parcel of gas.

Heat pipe

A heat pipe is a heat-transfer device that combines the principles of both thermal conductivity and phase transition to effectively transfer heat between two solid interfaces.

Rankine cycle Model that is used to predict the performance of steam turbine systems

The Rankine cycle is a model used to predict the performance of steam turbine systems. It was also used to study the performance of reciprocating steam engines. The Rankine cycle is an idealized thermodynamic cycle of a heat engine that converts heat into mechanical work while undergoing phase change. It is an idealized cycle in which friction losses in each of the four components are neglected. The heat is supplied externally to a closed loop, which usually uses water as the working fluid. It is named after William John Macquorn Rankine, a Scottish polymath and Glasgow University professor.

Superheated steam is a steam at a temperature higher than its vaporization (boiling) point at the absolute pressure where the temperature is measured.

Temperature control

Temperature control is a process in which change of temperature of a space, or of a substance, is measured or otherwise detected, and the passage of heat energy into or out of the space or substance is adjusted to achieve a desired temperature.

Thermal hydraulics is the study of hydraulic flow in thermal fluids. The area can be mainly divided into three parts: thermodynamics, fluid mechanics, and heat transfer, but they are often closely linked to each other. A common example is steam generation in power plants and the associated energy transfer to mechanical motion and the change of states of the water while undergoing this process. Thermal-hydraulic analysis can determine important parameters for reactor design such as plant efficiency and coolability of the system.

Thermosiphon

Thermosiphon is a method of passive heat exchange, based on natural convection, which circulates a fluid without the necessity of a mechanical pump. Thermosiphoning is used for circulation of liquids and volatile gases in heating and cooling applications such as heat pumps, water heaters, boilers and furnaces. Thermosiphoning also occurs across air temperature gradients such as those utilized in a wood fire chimney or solar chimney.

Wet-bulb temperature temperature read by a thermometer covered in water-soaked cloth

The wet-bulb temperature (WBT) is the temperature read by a thermometer covered in water-soaked cloth over which air is passed. At 100% relative humidity, the wet-bulb temperature is equal to the air temperature and it is lower at lower humidity. It is defined as the temperature of a parcel of air cooled to saturation by the evaporation of water into it, with the latent heat supplied by the parcel. A wet-bulb thermometer indicates a temperature close to the true (thermodynamic) wet-bulb temperature. The wet-bulb temperature is the lowest temperature that can be reached under current ambient conditions by the evaporation of water only.

Atmospheric thermodynamics is the study of heat-to-work transformations that take place in the earth's atmosphere and manifest as weather or climate. Atmospheric thermodynamics use the laws of classical thermodynamics, to describe and explain such phenomena as the properties of moist air, the formation of clouds, atmospheric convection, boundary layer meteorology, and vertical instabilities in the atmosphere. Atmospheric thermodynamic diagrams are used as tools in the forecasting of storm development. Atmospheric thermodynamics forms a basis for cloud microphysics and convection parameterizations used in numerical weather models and is used in many climate considerations, including convective-equilibrium climate models.

An evaporator is a device in a process used to turn the liquid form of a chemical substance such as water into its gaseous-form/vapor. The liquid is evaporated, or vaporized, into a gas form of the targeted substance in that process.

Convective heat transfer

Convective heat transfer, often referred to simply as convection, is the transfer of heat from one place to another by the movement of fluids. Convection is usually the dominant form of heat transfer in liquids and gases. Although often discussed as a distinct method of heat transfer, convective heat transfer involves the combined processes of unknown conduction and advection.

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