LES study on forced convection heat transfer to water at supercritical pressure in a trapezoid annulus

[+] Author and Article Information
Muhsin Mohd Amin

The University of Sheffield Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Sheffield, Sheffield S1 3JD, UK

Yu Duan

Imperial College London Department Mechanical Engineering, Imperial College London, London, SW7 2AZ, UK

Shuisheng He

The University of Sheffield Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Sheffield, Sheffield S1 3JD, UK

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4038161 History: Received April 30, 2017; Revised September 21, 2017


It is now well known that heat transfer to fluid at supercritical pressure shows complex behaviours. This is due to the strong variations of the thermal physical properties resulting from the changes of pressure and temperature. To improve the reliability and efficiency of the supercritical water-cooled reactors to be designed, the understanding of supercritical fluid flow in the fuel assemblies is very important. The study reported here reconsiders a simplified geometry, including a trapezoid channel enclosing an inner rod to simulate the triangular arrangement of a fuel assembly. Large eddy simulation (LES) with the WALE model is used to simulate the forced convection flow in the channel. Supercritical water at 25MPa is used as the working fluid. The Reynolds number based on the hydraulic diameter and the bulk velocity was 10540, while the heat flux from the inner rod wall was varied from 10kW/m^2 to 75kW/m^2. Due to the non-uniformity of the cross-section of the flow channel, large unsteady flow structures are observed. The characteristics of the flow structures and their effect on the local heat transfer are analysed using the instantaneous velocities, spectrum analysis and correlation analysis. The swinging flow structures in the wide gap are much weaker than those in the narrow gap. The behaviours of such large flow structures are influenced by the strong spatial and temporal variations of the properties. When the temperature distribution follows T_b<T_pc<T_w, the mixing parameters are also significantly influenced.

Copyright (c) 2017 by ASME
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