Experimental investigation of heat transport in homogeneous bubbly flow

28 Feb 2018  ·  Gvozdic Biljana, Almeras Elise, Mathai Varghese, Zhu Xiaojue, van Gils Dennis P. M., Verzicco Roberto, Huisman Sander G., Sun Chao, Lohse Detlef ·

We present results on the global and local characterisation of heat transport in homogeneous bubbly flow. Experimental measurements were performed with and without the injection of $\sim 2.5$ mm diameter bubbles (corresponding to $Re_b \approx 600$) in a rectangular water column heated from one side and cooled from the other... The gas volume fraction $\alpha$ was varied in the range $0\% - 5\%$, and the Rayleigh number $Ra_H$ in the range $4.0 \times 10^9 - 1.2 \times 10^{11}$. We find that the global heat transfer is enhanced up to 20 times due to bubble injection. Interestingly, for bubbly flow, for our lowest concentration $\alpha = 0.5\% $ onwards, the Nusselt number $\overline{Nu}$ is nearly independent of $Ra_H$, and depends solely on the gas volume fraction~$\alpha$. We observe the scaling $\overline{Nu} \propto \alpha^{0.45}$, which is suggestive of a diffusive transport mechanism. Through local temperature measurements, we show that the bubbles induce a huge increase in the strength of liquid temperature fluctuations, e.g. by a factor of 200 for $\alpha = 0.9\%$. Further, we compare the power spectra of the temperature fluctuations for the single- and two-phase cases. In the single-phase cases, most of the spectral power of the temperature fluctuations is concentrated in the large-scale rolls. However, with the injection of bubbles, we observe intense fluctuations over a wide range of scales, extending up to very high frequencies. Thus, while in the single-phase flow the thermal boundary layers control the heat transport, once the bubbles are injected, the bubble-induced liquid agitation governs the process from a very small bubble concentration onwards. read more

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Fluid Dynamics