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Friction and heat transfer coefficients in smooth and rough pipes with dilute polymer solutions


Debrule, Paul M. (1972) Friction and heat transfer coefficients in smooth and rough pipes with dilute polymer solutions. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/0NA8-5133.


Measurements of friction and heat transfer coefficients were obtained with dilute polymer solutions flowing through electrically heated smooth and rough tubes. The polymer used was "Polyox WSR-301", and tests were performed at concentrations of 10 and 50 parts per million. The rough tubes contained a close-packed, granular type of surface with roughness-height-to-diameter ratios of 0.0138 and 0.0488 respectively. A Prandtl number range of 4.38 to 10.3 was investigated which was obtained by adjusting the bulk temperature of the solution. The Reynolds numbers in the experiments were varied from =10,000 (Pr= 10.3) to 250,000 (Pr= 4.38).

Friction reductions as high as 73% in smooth tubes and 83% in rough tubes were observed, accompanied by an even more drastic heat transfer reduction (as high as 84% in smooth tubes and 93% in rough tubes). The heat transfer coefficients with Polyox can be lower for a rough tube than for a smooth one.

The similarity rules previously developed for heat transfer with a Newtonian fluid were extended to dilute polymer solution pipe flows. A velocity profile similar to the one proposed by Deissler was taken as a model to interpret the friction and heat transfer data in smooth tubes. It was found that the observed results could be explained by assuming that the turbulent diffusivities are reduced in smooth tubes in the vicinity of the wall, which brings about a thickening of the viscous layer. A possible mechanism describing the effect of the polymer additive on rough pipe flow is also discussed.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:Engineering
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Engineering and Applied Science
Major Option:Engineering and Applied Science
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Sabersky, Rolf H.
Thesis Committee:
  • Unknown, Unknown
Defense Date:5 May 1972
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Department of the NavyN66001-72-C-0009
DuPont de Nemours Co.UNSPECIFIED
Record Number:CaltechTHESIS:04112016-132300001
Persistent URL:
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:9671
Deposited On:11 Apr 2016 21:32
Last Modified:09 Nov 2022 19:20

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