Fall 2010 IAB
September 15 to 17

Plenary 1: Christopher W. Hogue

A Self-Nucleating Evaporator Surface: A Novel Approach to Stabilized, Low-Superheat Microscale Boiling

To enhance the performance and stability of the evaporator for the microColumnated Loop Heat Pipe (µC-LHP) system, an experimental investigation into the feasibility of a low-superheat, passive, self-nucleating evaporator surface was performed. The evaporator test surfaces were coated with polymer-encapsulated azobis-isobutyronitrile (AIBN), a chemical compound that releases gaseous nitrogen upon thermal decomposition between 64-100°C, while the control surfaces were coated with polymer alone. Cyclic pool boiling tests were performed at both saturated and subcooled conditions in a variety of dielectric refrigerants, and it was demonstrated that the self-nucleating evaporator surface reduced the required superheat for the onset of nucleate boiling by 10-15°C.