The development and validation of mechanistic boiling heat transfer models has been a focal point in the efforts to improve the efficiency and profitability of power generation systems, e.g. nuclear reactors. The primary goal of these models is improving the accuracy of boiling heat transfer simulations and reducing the uncertainty margins that affect both the design and the safety of a system. However, the emergence of these models has also stimulated the need for high-fidelity experiments and experimental data for validation and verification.

In this work we present first-of-a-kind data of heat flux partitioning in boiling heat transfer, obtained using cutting-edge diagnostics and post-processing techniques. A HSV camera was used to visualize the boiling surface at 10,000 frames per second with simultaneous front and side views of the two-phase flow. A high-speed IR camera was used to capture the 2-D radiative signal from the boiling surface to visualize bubble nucleation, growth and detachment at a 115 μm/pixel resolution at 2,500 frames per second. A coupled radiation-conduction calibration model was used to calibrate the IR data and extract the full local temperature and heat flux distributions on the boiling surface, which enable a direct measurement of the partitioned heat fluxes.

Here we report the results of investigations performed in flow boiling conditions with a mass flux of 500 kg/m2/s, at atmospheric pressure and 10 K of subcooling. These data will be leveraged to inform the development and validation of the next generation of mechanistic boiling heat transfer models, to be used in Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) codes for the design and the safety analysis of nuclear reactors.

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