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Research Papers

Boiling Heat Transfer and Flow Regimes in Microchannels—A Comprehensive Understanding

[+] Author and Article Information
Tannaz Harirchian

School of Mechanical Engineering and Birck Nanotechnology Center, Purdue University, 585 Purdue Mall, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2088

Suresh V. Garimella2

School of Mechanical Engineering and Birck Nanotechnology Center, Purdue University, 585 Purdue Mall, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2088sureshg@purdue.edu

2

Corresponding author.

J. Electron. Packag 133(1), 011001 (Mar 02, 2011) (10 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4002721 History: Received January 24, 2010; Revised May 17, 2010; Published March 02, 2011; Online March 02, 2011

Flow boiling in microchannels has been investigated extensively over the past decade for electronics cooling applications; however, the implementation of microchannel heat sinks operating in the two-phase regime in practical applications has lagged due to the complexity of boiling phenomena at the microscale. This has led to difficulties in predicting the heat transfer rates that can be achieved as a function of the governing parameters. From extensive experimental work and analysis performed in recent years, a clear picture has emerged that promises to enable prediction of flow boiling heat transfer over a wide parameter space. Experiments have been conducted to determine the effects of important geometric parameters such as channel width, depth, and cross-sectional area, operating conditions such as mass flux, heat flux, and vapor quality, as well as fluid properties, on flow regimes, heat transfer coefficients, and pressure drops in microchannels. A detailed mapping of flow regimes occurring under different conditions has been facilitated with high-speed flow visualizations. In addition, quantitative criteria for the transition between macro- and microscale boiling behaviors have been identified. In this paper, these recent advances toward a comprehensive understanding of flow boiling in microchannels are summarized.

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Copyright © 2011 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Figures

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Figure 1

(a) A representative microchannel test chip and (b) a schematic of the test chip cross section with integrated heaters and temperature sensors (11)

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Figure 2

Description of observed flow boiling regimes (12)

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Figure 3

Summary of boiling flow patterns in the microchannel test pieces; the microchannel dimensions are presented as width (μm)×depth (μm) with a single-channel cross-sectional area (mm2) in parentheses (14)

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Figure 4

Flow patterns in the 2200×400 μm2 microchannels at the three different heat fluxes; G=630 kg/m2 s(11)

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Figure 5

Transition from confined flow to unconfined flow (14)

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Figure 6

Effect of microchannel dimensions (width (μm)×depth (μm)) on heat transfer coefficients (11)

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Figure 7

Effect of mass flux on heat transfer coefficients; the arrows mark the heat fluxes at which suppression of nucleate boiling is observed (12)

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Figure 8

Effect of microchannel dimensions (width (μm)×depth (μm)) on boiling curves (11)

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Figure 9

Effect of microchannel dimensions (width (μm)×depth (μm)) on pressure drop (11)

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Figure 10

Comprehensive flow regime map, including regime transitions, for FC-77 (14)

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