DigiBoil – Development of computational fluid dynamic boiling heat transfer models with applicability to high heat flux

Summary

Electrical components release large amounts of heat during operation. This is a big limiting factor in improving the technology of power systems used for transportation, or processes used in industry such as in the processing of metals. In fact, the heat released per unit area is so large that it cannot be removed using traditional ways of heat transfer using air or water, even in a circulating cooling system. For these applications, a more suitable way of removing heat is cooling by boiling. If the liquid is heated up to the point where it starts boiling, this allows much more heat to be transferred to the liquid while it turns to gas.

However, in order to successfully apply this method of removing heat to complex systems, we need to be able to predict how the system will perform. Therefore, with this project, we will develop a computational tool that will predict the heat transfer by boiling in a system. This will be based on understanding the physics behind the phenomenon. With this tool, we can then reduce the energy consumption, as the transfer of heat will be more efficient. This will reduce the negative impact on the environment. This tool can be applied to simulate the operation of large and complex systems in industrial applications where there is a large generation of heat. The project will be in partnership with Westinghouse Electric Sweden AB and ABB AB who want to increase the heat transfer efficiency in their applications.