This paper discusses a pulsating heat pipe (PHP) using a self-rewetting fluid. Unlike other common liquids, self-rewetting fluids have the property that the surface tension increases with temperature. The increasing surface tension at a higher temperature can cause the liquid to be drawn toward a heated surface if a dry spot appears and thus to improve boiling heat transfer. In experiments, 1-butanol and 1-pentanol were added to water at a concentration of less than 1 wt % to make self-rewetting fluid. A pulsating heat pipe made from an extruded multiport tube was partially filled with the self-rewetting fluid water mixture and tested for its heat transport capability at different input power levels. The experiments showed that the maximum heat transport capability was enhanced by a factor of 4 when the maximum heater temperature was limited to 110°C. Thus, the use of a self-rewetting fluid in a PHP was shown to be highly effective in improving the heat transport capability of pulsating heat pipes.

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