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Proceedings Paper

Biomimetic super-hydrophobic surfaces for use in enhanced dropwise condensation
Author(s): Kuok Cheng; Bong June Zhang; Chi Young Lee; Mike Kennedy; Sunwoo Kim; Hyungkee Yoon; Kwang J. Kim; Jiong Liu; Ganesh Skandan
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Paper Abstract

There have been many attempts to enhance heat transfer during the condensation (vapor to liquid) process since condensation is a critical heat transfer mechanism in many industrial processes. One conventional method of enhancing condensation heat transfer is to specially treat the condensing heat exchanger surface to adequately promote so-called "dropwise" condensation. Biomimetically constructed coating with hydrophobic materials is often employed for surface treatment. This coating on the condensing heat transfer surface effectively shifts the condensation mode from filmwise (the conventional heat transfer mode) to dropwise (similar to lotus leaves?), resulting in much higher condensation heat transfer. In this method the thickness of coatings is a key parameter governing the heat transfer rate. Thin coating benefits the heat transfer but can lead to weakening hydrophobicity and failure to have an acceptable life span. However, thick coating reduces or eliminates the merit of the dropwise condensation phenomenon because the coating introduces additional thermal resistance. Herein, we report an innovative biomimetic concept in connection with a surface treatment that potentially solves the aforementioned issues. Instead of using conventional dense coatings on the condensing surface, the concept of randomly arranged or structurally oriented nano or submicro-scale fins and/or porous surfaces similar to nature-invented hydrophobic surfaces allowing molecular clustering for effective steam condensation, is presented and experimentally verified.

Paper Details

Date Published: 23 March 2011
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 7975, Bioinspiration, Biomimetics, and Bioreplication, 79750Y (23 March 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.882189
Show Author Affiliations
Kuok Cheng, Univ. of Nevada, Reno (United States)
Bong June Zhang, Univ. of Nevada, Reno (United States)
Chi Young Lee, Univ. of Nevada, Reno (United States)
Mike Kennedy, Univ. of Nevada, Reno (United States)
Sunwoo Kim, Univ. of Nevada, Reno (United States)
Univ. of Alaska Fairbanks (United States)
Hyungkee Yoon, Univ. of Nevada, Reno (United States)
Korea Institute of Energy Research (Korea, Republic of)
Kwang J. Kim, Univ. of Nevada, Reno (United States)
Jiong Liu, NEI Corp. (United States)
Ganesh Skandan, NEI Corp. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7975:
Bioinspiration, Biomimetics, and Bioreplication
Raúl J. Martín-Palma; Akhlesh Lakhtakia, Editor(s)

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