Nanofluids, solid-liquid suspensions with solid particles of size of the order of few nanometers, have created interest in many researchers because of their enhancement in thermal conductivity and convective heat transfer characteristics. Many studies have been done on the pool boiling characteristics of nanofluids, most of which have been with nanofluids containing oxide nanoparticles owing to the ease in their preparation. Deterioration in boiling heat transfer was observed in some studies. Metallic nanofluids having metal nanoparticles, which are known for their good heat transfer characteristics in bulk regime, reported drastic enhancement in thermal conductivity. The present paper investigates into the pool boiling characteristics of metallic nanofluids, in particular of Cu-H2O nanofluids, on flat copper heater surface. The results indicate that at comparatively low heat fluxes, there is deterioration in boiling heat transfer with very low particle volume fraction of 0.01%, and it increases with volume fraction and shows enhancement with 0.1%. However, the behavior is the other way around at high heat fluxes. The enhancement at low heat fluxes is due to the fact that the effect of formation of thin sorption layer of nanoparticles on heater surface, which causes deterioration by trapping the nucleation sites, is overshadowed by the increase in microlayer evaporation, which is due to enhancement in thermal conductivity. Same trend has been observed with variation in the surface roughness of the heater as well.

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