Heat transfer from a spherical heating element by forced convection occurs in many situations of practical importance. While the present investigation stems from interest in spherical fuel elements for liquid-cooled nuclear reactors, similar heat-transfer conditions may prevail in chemical process reactors and in other engineering applications. Previously reported measurements of convective heat-transfer coefficients from spheres to liquids have been limited to low Reynolds numbers and to negligibly small temperature differences. This paper correlates these earlier data with new measurements taken at much higher Reynolds numbers and with substantial temperature difference between the heating surface and the liquid. The significance of the larger temperature difference is twofold: Since the viscosity variation of liquids with temperature is usually strong, there may be an important viscosity change across the boundary layer. Furthermore, natural convection effects may not be ignored in regions of large temperature difference and low or moderate Reynolds number. Both of these effects are discussed in the paper.

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