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Research Papers: Flows in Complex Systems

Lift and Drag Characteristics of an Air-Cooled Heat Exchanger Axial Flow Fan

[+] Author and Article Information
Francois G. Louw

Department of Mechanical
and Mechatronic Engineering,
Stellenbosch University,
Stellenbosch 7600, Republic of South Africa
e-mail: francoisl@sun.ac.za

Theodore W. von Backström

Professor
Department of Mechanical
and Mechatronic Engineering,
Stellenbosch University,
Stellenbosch 7600, Republic of South Africa
e-mail: twvb@sun.ac.za

Sybrand J. van der Spuy

Senior Lecturer
Department of Mechanical
and Mechatronic Engineering,
Stellenbosch University,
Stellenbosch 7600, Republic of South Africa
e-mail: sjvdspuy@sun.ac.za

Contributed by the Fluids Engineering Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF FLUIDS ENGINEERING. Manuscript received July 2, 2014; final manuscript received March 9, 2015; published online April 28, 2015. Assoc. Editor: Edward M. Bennett.

J. Fluids Eng 137(8), 081101 (Aug 01, 2015) (9 pages) Paper No: FE-14-1348; doi: 10.1115/1.4030165 History: Received July 02, 2014; Revised March 09, 2015; Online April 28, 2015

Actuator-disk models (ADMs) use blade element theory to numerically simulate the flow field induced by axial fans. These models give a fair approximation at near design flow rates, but are of poor accuracy at low flow rates. Therefore, the lift/drag (LD) characteristics of two-dimensional (2D) sections along the span of an air-cooled heat exchanger (ACHE) axial fan are numerically investigated, with the future prospect of improving ADMs at these flow conditions. It is found that the blade sectional LD characteristics are similar in shape, but offset from the 2D LD characteristics of the reference airfoil (NASA LS 413 profile) at small angles of attack (αatt<5deg). A deviation between these characteristics is observed at higher angles of attack. The blade sectional lift coefficients for αatt>5deg always remain lower compared to the maximum lift coefficient of the reference airfoil. Conversely, the blade sectional drag coefficients are always higher compared to that of the reference airfoil for αatt>5deg.

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References

Figures

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Fig. 2

B2a-fan. Adapted from Ref. [20].

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Fig. 3

Computational domain for CFD modeling. Adapted from Ref. [20].

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Fig. 4

Comparison between experimentally and numerically obtained values for the fan performance characteristic in the form of the fan static pressure coefficient, ΨFs and fan static efficiency, ηFs. Adapted from Ref. [20].

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Fig. 5

Depiction of B2a-fan blade sector, velocity triangles and the data sampling locations

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Fig. 6

Flow chart depicting the Python routine used for data analyses

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Fig. 7

Time dependent LD coefficients for blade sections at: (a) sdim = 0.1, (b) sdim = 0.5, and (c) sdim = 0.9

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Fig. 8

Dimensionless velocity components and the angle of attack compared to dimensionless span for a range of flow coefficients

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Fig. 9

Surface limiting streamlines for Φd=0.168

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Fig. 10

Surface limiting streamlines for Φ=0.048

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Fig. 11

Numerically obtained LD coefficients of various blade span sectional profiles compared to flow coefficient

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Fig. 12

LD coefficients compared to dimensionless span for a range of flow coefficients

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Fig. 13

Numerically obtained LD coefficients of various blade span sectional profiles compared to the NASA LS 413 [14] airfoil profile

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