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Characteristics of an Evaporating Thin Film in a Microchannel

[+] Author Affiliations
Hao Wang, Suresh V. Garimella, Jayathi Y. Murthy

Purdue University

Paper No. IMECE2006-13899, pp. 235-242; 8 pages
  • ASME 2006 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Heat Transfer, Volume 2
  • Chicago, Illinois, USA, November 5 – 10, 2006
  • Conference Sponsors: Heat Transfer Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4785-3 | eISBN: 0-7918-3790-4
  • Copyright © 2006 by ASME


The thin-film region of an evaporating meniscus is investigated through an augmented Young-Laplace model and the kinetic theory-based expression for mass transport across a liquid-vapor interface. A fourth-order differential equation for the thickness profile is developed and the boundary conditions at the beginning of the thin-film region are discussed in detail. A perturbation on the initial thickness is employed to avoid the evaporation being totally suppressed all along the meniscus. The role of capillary pressure in controlling the meniscus profile and rate of liquid supply is detailed. The evaporation heat transfer coefficient is greatly suppressed at the beginning of the thin-film region due to disjoining pressure; in the intrinsic meniscus, evaporation is suppressed due to capillary pressure, especially for low wall superheat. The importance of the thin-film region in determining the overall heat transfer is shown to depend on the channel size and degree of superheat.

Copyright © 2006 by ASME



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