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Thermal Conductivity and Thermal Contact Resistance of Metal Foams

[+] Author Affiliations
Ehsan Sadeghi, Nedjib Djilali

University of Victoria, Victoria, BC, Canada

Majid Bahrami

Simon Fraser University, Victoria, BC, Canada

Paper No. HT2009-88557, pp. 355-365; 11 pages
  • ASME 2009 Heat Transfer Summer Conference collocated with the InterPACK09 and 3rd Energy Sustainability Conferences
  • Volume 2: Theory and Fundamental Research; Aerospace Heat Transfer; Gas Turbine Heat Transfer; Computational Heat Transfer
  • San Francisco, California, USA, July 19–23, 2009
  • Conference Sponsors: Heat Transfer Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4357-4 | eISBN: 978-0-7918-3851-8
  • Copyright © 2009 by ASME


Unique specifications of metal foams such as relatively low cost, ultra-low density, high surface-area-to-volume ratio, and most importantly, the ability to mix the passing fluid provide them a great potential for a variety of thermal-fluidics applications. In the present study, a compact analytical model for evaluating the effective thermal conductivity of metal foams is developed. The medium structure is represented as orthogonal cylindrical ligaments that are equally spaced and sized. A unit cell is taken to represent the metal foam. The model accounts for varying cross-sectional ligaments which is consistent with microscopic images. A numerical analysis is performed to verify the proposed analytical models. The model predictions are in good agreement with existing experimental data and the present numerical results. A parametric study is then performed to investigate the effects of variation in ligament cross-section geometry, uniformity, and aspect ratio over a wide range of porosities. Moreover, Thermal contact resistance phenomenon is included in the analysis.

Copyright © 2009 by ASME



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