Effective material usage in a compact heat exchanger with periodic micro–channels
Kleynhans, Bertus George
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All modern High Temperature Reactors (HTR) thermal cycles have one thing in common: the use of some form of heat exchanger. This heat exchanger is used to pre-heat or cool the primary loop gas, from where the secondary power generation cycle is driven. The Compact Heat Exchanger (CHE) type offers high heat loads in smaller volumes. Various studies have been done to improve the heat transfer in the flow channels of these CHEs but little focus has been placed on the thermal design of surrounding material in such a heat exchanger. The focus of this study is on the effective material usage in a CHE. Three test cases were investigated (trapezoidal, serpentine and zigzag layouts with semi-circular cross-sections) all under the same boundary conditions. Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) was used to simulate these test cases and the results were evaluated according to four factors, the volume ratio, heat spots, temperature difference and the combined enhancement factor. From the results it was concluded that the zigzag layout performs best when evaluated according to the volume ratio and the temperature difference and gave the best overall enhancement factor. The serpentine layout performed the worst when evaluated according to the enhancement factor.
- Engineering