The surface energy of the material used in the construction of capillary covers is an important element to increase the boiling heat transfer on the coverings. There are a variety of methodologies for measuring the surface energy of solids, but few could be used with the construction materials tested. The sessile drop methodology allows the evaluation of either the surface energy of solids or the interfacial energy of liquids. The methodology uses an image digitalization system for measuring the contact angle of liquids on the solid’s surface. The contact angles thus measured are used to calculate the superficial and interfacial energies. This methodology was tested with an experimental set up built for this study. The accuracy of the set up was obtained with clean and greased surfaces of high heat conductivity metals. The surface energies calculated were in accordance with previous experimental results. The surface energies of metal foils used for construction of capillary coverings were similar to the values calculated for the parental solid metal. The surfaces with different grease thickness get values of surface energy close to the value for the adhered hydrocarbons. The same methodology is used for measuring interfacial energies of pure and mixtures of liquids. The liquids studied include those used for increasing boiling heat transfer. Ethanol-water mixtures were analyzed. The mixture with 16% ethanol by weight had the lowest contact angle (associated to the lowest interfacial energy) and produced the highest convective heat transfer coefficient, h. A minimum in the value of the contact angle around the 16% weight ethanol mixtures follows the maximum in the value of h around this composition, and a maximum in the wettability. Similarly, the surfactant sodium-lauryl-sulfate (SLS) produced an increment of the wettability of the mixture on the solid surface. The reduction of the contact angle is obtained with the addition of 100 ppm of SLS or less, depending on the base metal, but above this concentration, the surfactant does not modify the value of the contact angle. The h values increased with the addition of surfactant up to 100 ppm but do not change if the concentration of surfactant is higher than that value.

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