A voltage applied across a uniform plate results in a uniform ohmic heat dissipation, useful for conducting heat transfer experiments or preventing unacceptably low temperatures on spacecraft components. Most experiments to date involve application of a known uniform heat flux to the surface of a model. Measurement of the resulting temperature distribution facilitates calculation of the heat transfer coefficient, h. The dependence of h on the boundary condition, however, may necessitate a specified nonuniform heat flux. In this paper, a novel methodology is developed for designing a nonuniform thickness heat flux plate to provide a specified spatially variable heat flux. The equations are derived to solve the two dimensional heat flux with a variable cross sectional area. After showing that this inverse heat transfer problem cannot be readily linearized, a methodology utilizing a smooth surface polynomial was applied. Then, for a prescribed, desired heat flux distribution, a 7th order polynomial (including 36 terms) yielded a normalized root mean squared error of 1% over the surface. This distributed heat flux could result in significant power and thus cost savings for a variety of applications.
Achieving a Specific Nonuniform Heat Flux With an Electrical Heat Flux Plate
Contributed by the Heat Transfer Division of ASME for publication in the Journal of Heat Transfer. Manuscript received June 22, 2012; final manuscript received March 27, 2013; published online July 11, 2013. Assoc. Editor: Bruce L. Drolen.
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Rutledge, J. L., and Polanka, M. D. (July 11, 2013). "Achieving a Specific Nonuniform Heat Flux With an Electrical Heat Flux Plate." ASME. J. Heat Transfer. August 2013; 135(8): 084502. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.4024277
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