Abstract

High porosity, high pore-density (pores per inch: PPI) metal foams are a popular choice in high heat flux cooling applications as they offer large heat transfer area over a given volume, however, accompanied by a concomitant increase in pumping power requirements. Present experimental study aims towards developing a novel metal-foam based cooling configuration featuring thin copper foams (3 mm) subjected to orthogonal air jet array impingement. The foam configurations allowed strategic and selective placement of high pore-density (90 PPI) and high porosity (~ 96%) copper foam on the heated surface with respect to the jet array in the form of foam stripes aiming to enhance heat transfer and reduce pressure drop penalty. The thermal-hydraulic performance was evaluated over range of Reynolds numbers, jet-to-jet (x/dj ,y/dj) and jet-to-target (z/dj) spacings and compared with a baseline smooth surface. The effect of pore-density was further analyzed by studying 40 PPI copper foam and compared with corresponding 90 PPI foam arrangement. The thermal-hydraulic performance was found to be governed by combinational interaction of three major factors: heat transfer area, ease of jet penetration and foam volume usage. Strategic placement of metal foam stripes allowed better utilization of the foam heat transfer area and available foam volume by aiding penetration of coolant fluid through available foam thickness. Thus, performing better than the case where entire heat transfer area was covered with foam. For a fixed pumping power of 10 W, the optimal metal foam-jet configuration showed ~50% higher heat transfer with negligible increase in pumping power requirements.

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