Improving Vortex Generators to Enhance the Performance of Air-Cooled Condensers in a Geothermal Power Plant

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This report summarizes work at the Idaho National Laboratory to develop strategies to enhance air-side heat transfer in geothermal air-cooled condensers such that it should not significantly increase pressure drop and parasitic fan pumping power. The work was sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy, NEDO (New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization) of Japan, Yokohama National University, and the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, India. A combined experimental and numerical investigation was performed to investigate heat transfer enhancement techniques that may be applicable to largescale air-cooled condensers such as those used in geothermal power applications. A transient heat transfer ... continued below

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Sohal, Manohar S. September 1, 2005.

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Description

This report summarizes work at the Idaho National Laboratory to develop strategies to enhance air-side heat transfer in geothermal air-cooled condensers such that it should not significantly increase pressure drop and parasitic fan pumping power. The work was sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy, NEDO (New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization) of Japan, Yokohama National University, and the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, India. A combined experimental and numerical investigation was performed to investigate heat transfer enhancement techniques that may be applicable to largescale air-cooled condensers such as those used in geothermal power applications. A transient heat transfer visualization and measurement technique was employed in order to obtain detailed distributions of local heat transfer coefficients on model fin surfaces. Pressure drop measurements were obtained for a variety of tube and winglet configurations using a single-channel flow apparatus that included four tube rows in a staggered array. Heat transfer and pressure drop measurements were also acquired in a separate multiple-tube row apparatus in the Single Blow Test Facility. In addition, a numerical modeling technique was developed to predict local and average heat transfer for these low-Reynolds number flows, with and without winglets. Representative experimental and numerical results were obtained that reveal quantitative details of local finsurface heat transfer in the vicinity of a circular tube with a single delta winglet pair downstream of the cylinder. Heat transfer and pressure-drop results were obtained for flow Reynolds numbers based on channel height and mean flow velocity ranging from 700 to 6500. The winglets were of triangular (delta) shape with a 1:2 or 1:3 height/length aspect ratio and a height equal to 90% of the channel height. Overall mean fin-surface heat transfer results indicate a significant level of heat transfer enhancement (in terms of Colburn j-factor) associated with deployment of the winglets with circular as well as oval tubes. In general, toe-in (common flow up) type winglets appear to have better performance than the toe-out (common flow down) type winglets. Comparisons of heat transfer and pressure drop results for the elliptical tube versus a circular tube with and without winglets are provided. During the course of their independent research, all of the researchers have established that about 10 to 30% enhancement in Colburn j-factor is expected. However, actual increase in heat transfer rate from a heat exchanger employing finned tubes with winglets may be smaller, perhaps on the order of 2 to 5%. It is also concluded that for any specific application, more full-size experimentation is needed to optimize the winglet design for a specific heat exchanger application. If in place of a circular tube, an oval tube can be economically used in a bundle, it is expected that the pressure drop across the tube bundle with the application of vortex generators (winglets) will be similar to that in a conventional circular tube bundle. It is hoped that the results of this research will demonstrate the benefits of applying vortex generators (winglets) on the fins to improve the heat transfer from the air-side of the tube bundle.

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  • Report No.: INL/EXT-05-00627
  • Grant Number: DE-AC07-99ID-13727
  • DOI: 10.2172/911582 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 911582
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc891240

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Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) is the Department of Energy (DOE) office that collects, preserves, and disseminates DOE-sponsored research and development (R&D) results that are the outcomes of R&D projects or other funded activities at DOE labs and facilities nationwide and grantees at universities and other institutions.

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  • September 1, 2005

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Sept. 22, 2016, 2:13 a.m.

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  • Dec. 15, 2016, 3:10 p.m.

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Sohal, Manohar S. Improving Vortex Generators to Enhance the Performance of Air-Cooled Condensers in a Geothermal Power Plant, report, September 1, 2005; [Idaho Falls, Idaho]. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc891240/: accessed November 18, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.