Experimental study of laminar mixed convection in a rod bundle with mixing vane spacer grids

Lokanath Mohanta, Fan Bill Cheung, Stephen M. Bajorek, Kirk Tien, Chris L. Hoxie

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13 Scopus citations


Heat transfer by mixed convection in a rod bundle occurs when convection is affected by both the buoyancy and inertial forces. Mixed convection can be assumed when the Richardson number (Ri = Gr/Re2) is on the order of unity, indicating that both forced and natural convection are important contributors to heat transfer. In the present study, data obtained from the Rod Bundle Heat Transfer (RBHT) facility was used to determine the heat transfer coefficient in the mixed convection regime, which was found to be significantly larger than those expected assuming purely forced convection based on the inlet flow rate. The inlet Reynolds (Re) number for the tests ranged from 500 to 1300, while the Grashof (Gr) number varied from 1.5 × 105 to 3.8 × 106 yielding 0.25 < Ri < 4.3. Using results from RBHT test along with the correlation from the FLECHT-SEASET test program for laminar forced convection, a new correlation ​is proposed for mixed convection in a rod bundle. The new correlation accounts for the enhancement of heat transfer relative to laminar forced convection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)99-105
Number of pages7
JournalNuclear Engineering and Design
StatePublished - Feb 1 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Nuclear Energy and Engineering
  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Mechanical Engineering


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