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Effect of condensate flow rate on retention angle on horizontal low-finned tubes

The paper reports experimental results using simulated condensation on eight horizontal integral finned tubes with different fin spacing but same root diameter. Condensation was simulated with low approaching zero vapor velocity of condensate using three liquids (water, ethylene glycol and R141b) supplied to the tube via small holes between the fins along the top of the tubes. Controlling parameters of the investigation were fin spacing of condensation tubes, flow rate of condensate and surface tension to density ratio of the condensate. The results indicate that the retention angle (measured from the top of the tube to the position where the inter-fin space is completely filled with liquid) increases with the increase in fin spacing. Also, retention angle increases as the density of the condensate increases but retention angle decreases with increase in surface tension. Interesting finding is seen as retention angle remains constant with increase in condensate flow rate, starting from very low (nearly zero) flow rate to the flow rate at which the tube gets fully flooded. The critical flow rate for eight tubes of defined fin density against three working fluids is measured. Results obtained from simulated condensation for almost zero condensate velocity are in good agreement with earlier data and theoretical model for retention angle on such tubes [1].
PAPER REVISED: 2016-03-28
PAPER ACCEPTED: 2016-08-27
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