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Numerical Investigation of Convective Heat Transfer to Supercritical Pressure Hydrogen in a Straight Tube

[+] Author and Article Information
Yu Ji

Key Laboratory of Advanced Reactor Engineering
and Safety of Ministry of Education,
Collaborative Innovation Center of Advanced
Nuclear Energy Technology,
Institute of Nuclear and New Energy Technology,
Tsinghua University,
Beijing 100084, China
e-mail: jiyu1994joe11@163.com

Jun Sun

Key Laboratory of Advanced Reactor Engineering
and Safety of Ministry of Education,
Collaborative Innovation Center of Advanced
Nuclear Energy Technology,
Institute of Nuclear and New Energy Technology,
Tsinghua University,
Beijing 100084, China
e-mail: sunjun@tsinghua.edu.cn

Lei Shi

Key Laboratory of Advanced Reactor Engineering
and Safety of Ministry of Education,
Collaborative Innovation Center of Advanced
Nuclear Energy Technology,
Institute of Nuclear and New Energy Technology,
Tsinghua University,
Beijing 100084, China
e-mail: shlinet@tsinghua.edu.cn

1Corresponding author.

Manuscript received October 26, 2017; final manuscript received February 23, 2018; published online May 16, 2018. Assoc. Editor: Walter Ambrosini.

ASME J of Nuclear Rad Sci 4(3), 031012 (May 16, 2018) (6 pages) Paper No: NERS-17-1193; doi: 10.1115/1.4039600 History: Received October 26, 2017; Revised February 23, 2018

Hydrogen is adopted as coolant for regenerative cooling nozzle and reactor core in nuclear thermal propulsion (NTP), which is a promising technology for human space exploration in the near future due to its large thrust and high specific impulse. During the cooling process, the hydrogen alters its state from subcritical to supercritical, accompanying with great variations of fluid properties and heat transfer characteristics. This paper is intended to study heat transfer processes of supercritical pressure hydrogen under extremely high heat flux by using numerical approach. To begin with, the models explaining the variation of density, specific heat capacity, viscosity, and thermal conductivity are introduced. Later on, the convective heat transfer to supercritical pressure hydrogen in a straight tube is investigated numerically by employing a computational model, which is simplified from experiments performed by Hendricks et al. During the simulation, the standard k–ε model combining the enhanced wall treatment is used to formulate the turbulent viscosity, and the results validates the approach through successful prediction of wall temperature profile and bulk temperature variation. Besides, the heat transfer deterioration which may occur in the heat transport of supercritical fluids is also observed. According to the results, it is deduced that the flow acceleration to a flat velocity profile in the near wall region due to properties variation of hydrogen contributes to the suppression of turbulence and the heat transfer deterioration, while the “M-shaped” velocity profile is more often correlated to the starting of a recovery phase of turbulence production and heat transfer.

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References

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Figures

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Fig. 2

Schematic view of computational model and boundary conditions

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Fig. 3

Heat flux enforced at the heated section in the present simulation

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Fig. 4

Distribution of computed wall temperature for different mesh densities

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Fig. 8

Streamwise development of radial velocity profile at selected axial locations

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Fig. 7

Local heat transfer coefficient along axial direction

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Fig. 5

Comparison between computed inner wall temperature and the reference data

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Fig. 6

Comparison between computed bulk temperature and the reference data

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Fig. 1

Flow chart and phase diagram of hydrogen in NTP

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Fig. 9

Production of turbulence kinetic energy due to shear stress at selected axial locations

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Fig. 10

Radial profile of density at selected axial locations

Tables

Errata

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