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Modeling a Loop Heat Pipe With a Capillary Wick in the Condenser

[+] Author Affiliations
H. Arthur Kariya, Catherine Koveal, Matthew McCarthy, John G. Brisson, Evelyn N. Wang

Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA

Paper No. IHTC14-22854, pp. 411-416; 6 pages
  • 2010 14th International Heat Transfer Conference
  • 2010 14th International Heat Transfer Conference, Volume 5
  • Washington, DC, USA, August 8–13, 2010
  • Conference Sponsors: Heat Transfer Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4940-8 | eISBN: 978-0-7918-3879-2
  • Copyright © 2010 by ASME


We present a model to predict the behavior of a novel loop heat pipe with a capillary wick in the condenser. The heat pipe consists of a single evaporator and multiple vertically-stacked condensers interdigitated with radial-outflow fan blades of a blower. The resulting heat exchanger assembly maximizes heat transfer area by integrating the heat sink and blower together. As a result of the stacked design, the lowest condenser has the highest liquid pressure in the presence of gravity. The capillary pressure generated by the condenser wick is used to compensate for the difference in the liquid pressures among the condensers. This paper focuses on modeling and designing the heat pipe to form receding menisci in the condensers. The effect of the compensation chamber pressure and viscous losses on the meniscus orientation is examined. The results of the model show that an advancing meniscus is formed at lower heat inputs and a threshold heat input must be exceeded to form a receding meniscus. Guidelines for selecting appropriate wicks for the evaporator and condenser are reported.

Copyright © 2010 by ASME



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