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Heat Transfer

Prof. Geoff Silcox

Spring 2005

Solution to Homework Assignment 3

Due Wednesday, 2 February, by 17:00.

Problem 1

In class on Monday, 24 J anuary, we estimated the time scale of an infinite plate

of thickness 2L as

( )

2

2

2

L Bi

Bi

τ

α

+

=

where Bi =hL/k and α is the thermal diffusivity, k/ρc. Test the validity of this

approximation using a fully implicit, node-centered, numerical solution to the

following equations.

( )

( )

( )

( )

2

2

,0

0,

0

,

,

i

T T

t x

T x T

T t

x

T L t

k h T L t T

x

α

∞

∂ ∂

=

∂ ∂

=

∂

=

∂

∂

⎡ ⎤ − = −

⎣ ⎦

∂

Perform your calculations for Bi =0.01, 0.1, 0.2, 0.5, 1, 10, 100, 1000. In each

case, use the amount of energy conducted to the plate (W/m

2

) as the function

whose maximum slope you are estimating in order to obtain the time scale via

max min

max

Q Q

dQ

dt

τ

−

=

Include a summary of all calculations and a listing of your MATLAB code with

your solution, with sample output.

Solution: Numerical calculations performed with the m-file, tplate.m, at Bi =0.01,

1, and 1000, verify the validity of the first approach for all Bi. The second

approach begins to fail when Bi is much greater than 1. In fact, for Bi =1000, the

second approach gives a time scale of about 3 s when the actual value is 50 s.

The reasons for this are clearly visible in the plot below that shows the fractional

heat loss as a function of Fo for the numerical solution (green) and the one-term

analytical solution. There are clearly multiple time scales for the green function -

the initial slope is extremely steep and this agrees with the time scale of 3 s.

0 0.5 1 1.5

0

0.1

0.2

0.3

0.4

0.5

0.6

0.7

0.8

0.9

1

Heat loss profile (green-num, red-one-term)

Fourier number

F

r

a

c

t

i

o

n

a

l

h

e

a

t

l

o

s

s

Problem 2

Read the article by Yovanovich. It is on electronic reserve in the library. Use the

code developed in Problem 1 to critically evaluate the one term approximation for

the flat plat that he develops. The heart of that approximation is Equation 41 and

the critical Fourier numbers, Fo

c

, given in the introduction. The value of Fo

c

that

he reports for the infinite plate is 0.24. Is that value reasonable? What is the

error involved in using the one-term approximation when Fo

c

=0.24?

Solution: The value of Fo

c

=0.24 is consistent with the figure above with Bi >>1,

but I am not sure the two significant figures are justified. At Bi =1, Fo

c

=0.2 is

still appropriate. At Bi =0.01, Fo

c

is actually about 2, but at these conditions you

would want to use the lumped analysis anyway, so it doesn’t really matter.

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