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ME 315 - Heat Transfer Laboratory

Experiment No. 8
FORCED CONVECTION FROM A CIRCULAR CYLINDER
SUBJECTED TO CROSS FLOW
Nomenclature
As
surface area of cylinder (m2)
D
diameter of cylinder (m)
overall heat transfer coefficient (W/m2K)
h
k
thermal conductivity (W/mK)
L
length of cylinder (m)
Nu
Nusselt number (-)
q
amount of heat transferred to air (w)
Re
Reynolds number (-)
average surface temperature of cylinder (C)
Ts
Tf
film temperature (C)
T
free stream temperature (C)
U
free stream speed (m/s)
P
pressure drop (N/m2)

density of air (N/m3)


emissivity of cylinder (-)

Stefan-Boltzmann constant (W/m2 K4)

Reference
F.P. Incropera and D.P. DeWitt, Fundamentals of Heat and Mass Transfer, section 7.4 in 4th ed., 1996,
5th ed., 2002, , or 6th ed. 2007.
Objective
The purpose of this experiment is to experimentally determine the relationship between Nusselt number
and Reynolds number for a heated cylinder subjected to cooling by a cross flow of air and compare
results with correlations available in the text.
Concepts Emphasized
1. steady state convective heat transfer;
2. experimental approaches for determining free stream velocity and heat transfer coefficient;
3. importance of energy balances; and
4. role of radiative heat transfer.
Introduction
Flow across and heat transfer from a heated single, circular cylinder is frequently encountered in many
engineering applications. Examples of such applications include, among others, transmission lines for
electricity, heat exchangers and nuclear fuel elements. As we may recall, however, the corresponding
flow field is extremely complicated and the drag and heat transfer coefficients vary in an extremely
complex manner around the cylinder. In the experiment, we shall not be concerned with such
circumferential variation. Instead, we shall determine overall heat transfer coefficients, which are of
most practical interest in engineering calculations.

8.1

Pre-Lab Section: Theoretical Analysis


Consider a heated cylinder subjected to a cross flow of air, as shown in Fig. 1. We assume that the cross
flow is uniform and that forced convection is the primary mode of heat transfer. You may wish to review
the definitions of the Nusselt and Reynolds numbers.
1. The heat dissipated by the rod can be calculated by using the convective heat transfer equation.
q= h As(Ts-T)
where
q

h
As
D
L
Ts
T

=
=
=
=
=
=
=

steady-state heat transfer rate (W)


the overall heat transfer coefficient (W/m2K)
surface area of cylinder (m2) = DL
diameter of cylinder = 0.01905 m
Length of cylinder = 0.3048 m
surface temperature of cylinder (K)
ambient air temperature (K)

2. For this experiment it will be assumed that the power input into the cylinder is equal to the heat
dissipated by the rod. This assumption neglects other modes of heat transfer that may be present.
The rod is heated internally by an electric resistance heater. The input power is determined by
measuring the current and voltage and then calculating power according to the equation: Power =
Voltage, V Current, I
Power = V X I
Pressure
Manometer
Flow
Straighteners

Thermocouples
Heated
Cy linder
Plate

Intake

Pitot
Tube

Wind Tunnel

Exhaust

70 V
Signal
Conditioning

1 A

Card
Data Acquisition

Variable Power
Supply

Figure 1. Schematic diagram of the experimental setup.

8.2

3. The free stream velocity of the flow is determined by measuring the pressure difference P between
two locations in the flow with different velocities, and then applying Bernoulli's equation.

p 1V2

z const.
g 2 g
By using the Bernoulli's equation between a point in the free stream and a stagnation point, find an
expression for the free stream velocity. Knowing the velocity, the Reynolds Number can now be
determined. Compute the ReD for a velocity of 20 m/s at 25C in air at 1 atm. Will the boundary
layer around the cylinder be laminar or turbulent or a combination of both?
4. To determine the amount of power needed to maintain a certain cylinder surface temperature, Ts , the
heat transfer coefficient must first be determined. This is determined by finding the Nusselt number,
NuD , from the correlations in the Fundamentals of Heat and Mass Transfer textbook, Eqs. 7.52 (with
constants from Table 7.2 in the text) and 7.53 (note temperature at which properties are to be
evaluated). If the cylinder has a surface temperature of 80C, determine the NuD for the air flow
conditions given in step 3. Then solve for the heat transfer coefficient, h Nu D

k film
D

with kfilm

being the thermal conductivity of air evaluated at the film temperature, and for cylinder dimensions
given above.
5. Now determine the power needed to maintain a cylinder surface temperature Ts = 80C.
6. The amount of heat transferred by surface radiation was neglected in this analysis. Since the
radiation transfer qr T 4 , it is a nonlinear heat exchange process and therefore difficult to deal with
analytically. To simplify the analysis of the radiation transfer, it is often expressed in a linearized
form. To estimate the role of radiation first solve for the radiation heat transfer coefficient hrad:
hrad (Ts T )(Ts2 T2 )
= emissivity = 0.3 for polished copper
= Stefan-Boltzmann constant = 5.67 10-8 W/m2 K4

Use hrad to solve for the amount of heat transferred by radiation qrad hrad As (Ts T ) . What
percentage of the heat transferred by convection does this represent? In your engineering judgment,
is neglecting the radiation transfer justified? What is the importance of a polished copper surface?
By neglecting hrad , will a measured value of hconv (as will be done in the experiment) be higher or
lower than actual? If the copper surface is oxidized, thereby establishing an emissivity = 0.7, what
percentage increase in power would be required to maintain the 80C surface temperature?

8.3

DAQView Setup Parameters


Thermocouple Type:
Units:
Number of Thermocouples:
Start Condition:
Stop Condition:
Scan Rate:
Averaging:
Suggested Monitoring Method:

T
C
6 ( +CJC )
Manual Start
Manual Stop
1 scan/sec
Enabled: 100
Digital Meters/Chart

Experimental Procedures
Please have the TA explain the operation of the wind tunnel and the associated metering devices.
1. Configure the data acquisition software.
2. Several thermocouples will measure temperatures at the locations listed in Table 1. You will use
the average of temperatures at 4, 5, & 6 for the surface temperature, Ts.
TC Number
2
3
4
5
6
7

Location
ambient, outside test section
at Pitot tube, T
on cylinder surface, front
on cylinder surface, middle
on cylinder surface, back
inside wall of cylinder
(used as Ts in previous years)
Table 1. Thermocouple Locations

3. The inclined manometer measures the pressure difference, P , between static and stagnation
conditions through the use of a Pitot probe. Check that the manometer is level and that the fluid
meniscus is at 0. If either is not the case, ask the TA for assistance. Table 2, shown below, has
been set up as a guide to data taking. While you may use these sheets to record your data, you
should set up a similar table in Excel for your report. There you can do the necessary
calculations and construct the necessary graphs with ease.
4. Turn on the wind tunnel. Make sure the exhaust end is fully opened. Allow the manometer to
reach a constant P (i.e. small fluctuations will be ignored) and record this value in Table 2
under Open End (refers to the exhaust end of the wind tunnel, which will be restricted in size in
other runs). You will use this P to solve for the free stream velocity U . Use the perfect gas
law to calculate the air density at T.

U 2P / with =density of air at T and 1 atm pressure.


5. Turn on the power box. This box supplies voltage and current to a heater inside the copper
cylinder. Adjust the voltage drop to the first value given in Table 2 under Open End. Record the
voltage and current in the appropriate column of Table 2. Start the data acquisition program.

8.4

6. The cylinder must now be allowed to reach its steady-state temperature. For this experiment, the
temperature should remain constant for about 5 minutes to be considered steady state. The data
acquisition system can help in determining when steady state has been reached. It will plot the
temperatures from TCs 4, 5, & 6 as a function of time. You should be able to see the
temperatures begin to plateau to a steady state value. When the temperatures reach steady state,
record the values of P, V, I, T, T4, T5, & T6 in Table 2. At the end of run, once the steady
state values have been recorded, stop the data acquisition program by clicking the Stop button in
the Charts window and/or the Digital Meters window. You can then record the steady state
temperature values from the Digital Meters window.
7. The flow velocity can be varied by changing the restrictor plates which slide into position at the
downstream end of the wind tunnel. Repeat Step 5 for the three restrictor plates. It is best to
change the restrictor plates in turn before moving to another voltage setting. Be aware that due
to problems with memory allocation, you may have to STOP, QUIT, and restart the data
acquisition program for each run.
8. Repeat steps 5-8 for each voltage setting.
Data Reduction
1.
Calculate the power input to the heater according to the equation P=IV for each of the
experimental runs.
2.

Calculate a value of the overall heat transfer coefficient, h for each experimental run according
to the equation
h = Power / [As(Ts T )]

4.

Table 2 gives an outline of the order of calculations for each run. Calculate the Nusselt number,
NuD and Prandtl number, Pr for each column using the overall h , and kf , and other properties all
evaluated at the film temperature. You should use the curve fit equations given in Appendix I to
evaluate key properties of air. Does the Pr vary by more than 5% over the range of experimental
conditions?

5.

Plot the (NuD/Pr1/3) for each column versus the respective ReD, including data from both
experiments and the appropriate correlation.

6.

Using the curve fitting feature of Excel, determine a best fit power law curve, y=axb, to your
experimental data. Also, add a power law curve fit to your theoretical data. The results should
match your correlation. Compare the best fit values of the constant, C and exponent, n with
those suggested in your text for this range of ReD .

7.

Calculate the predicted uncertainty of (NuD/Pr1/3) and ReD. Discuss the meaning of the
uncertainty and the effect this result has on the apparent accuracy of the experiment.

8.

Complete your report, making comments on:


a. the comparison between the experimentally determined NuD number with the one obtained
for the correlation;
b. the role of the restrictor plates;

8.5

c.
d.
e.
f.
g.
h.
i.

the significance of the Re number;


measurement of free stream velocity;
the physical significance of the NuD number;
how the Re number relates to the NuD number;
the role of other modes of heat transfer and losses from the end of copper cylinder;
steady-state conditions; and
the overall educational experience of this experiment and areas for possible improvement in
the experiment as well as in this manual.

8.6

Table 2. Measured data and results of calculations for heated cylinder in cross flow.
FLOW
CASE

OPEN END

PLATE 1

PLATE 2

PLATE 3

P (in H2O)
P (Pascals)

U (m/s)
(Set 35 V)

(Set 35 V)

V (volts)
I (amp)
P (W)
T (C)

T4 (C)
T5 (C)
T6 (C)
Ts=Tavg (C)
Tf ilm (C)

Re D

UD

film

Prfilm

h (W/m2 K)
Nu D

hD
k film

Nu D
(Expt)
/3
Pr1film
Nu D
(Corr)
/3
Pr1film

8.7

(Set 35 V)

(Set 35 V)

Table 2. (continued)
FLOW
CASE

OPEN END

PLATE 1

PLATE 2

PLATE 3

P (in H2O)
P (Pascals)

U (m/s)
(Set 50 V)

(Set 50 V)

V (volts)
I (amp)
P (W)
T (C)

T4 (C)
T5 (C)
T6 (C)
Ts =Tavg (C)

Tf ilm (C)

Re D

UD

film

Prfilm

h (W/m2 K)

Nu D

hD
k film

Nu D
(Expt)
/3
Pr1film
Nu D
(Corr)
/3
Pr1film

8.8

(Set 50 V)

(Set 50 V)

Table 2. (continued)
FLOW
CASE

OPEN END

PLATE 1

PLATE 2

PLATE 3

P (in H2O)
P (Pascals)

U (m/s)
(Set 65 V)

(Set 65 V)

V (volts)
I (amp)
P (W)
T (C)

T4 (C)
T5 (C)
T6 (C)
Ts =Tavg (C)

Tf ilm (C)

Re D

UD

film

Prfilm

h (W/m2 K)

Nu D

hD
k film

Nu D
(Expt)
/3
Pr1film
Nu D
(Corr)
/3
Pr1film

8.9

(Set 65 V)

(Set 65 V)

APPENDIX I
Curve Fits to Property Data for Dry Air at 1 atm
1.

Thermal Conductivity, k = 7.640E-5T +3.270E-3 with T in K, k in W/(m-K)

2.

Kinematic Viscosity, = 1.040E-10T2 + 3.228E-8T 3.136E-6 with T in K, in m2/s

3.

Prandtl Number, Pr = 1.940E-4T + 0.7673 with T in K

8.10

M.E. 315 - Heat Transfer Lab


Evaluation Form
EXPERIMENT 8 -- Forced Convection from a Circular Cylinder Subjected to Cross Flow
This form is to be filled out by each student at the end of each lab experiment, and turned in with
the lab report. The purpose is to help the instructor(s) make changes or modifications for the future.
Your comments will in no way affect your grade--please be honest in your evaluation.

1.

Approximately how much time did you spend on this experiment?


________hours in-class time,

2.

3.

________hours outside of class time

What was your overall impression of the experiment? (You can elaborate on any of these in 3.
below.)
(a)

Terrible! I hated it! Why?

(b)

Didn't like it much, needs these improvements:

(c)

Satisfactory-some minor changes needed:

(d)

I enjoyed it and learned a lot. Comments?

(e)

Fantastic! I loved it! Why?

Please give any specific comments below which will help us improve the experiment for next
semester.

8.11