Item description

Simulation of heat transfer in a serial plate heat exchanger in Ansys Fluent

In air conditioning, one of the most important factors in determining the type of converter is the space available. In many cases, it is not possible to put tubular or cylindrical transducers. Plate heat exchangers due to low space occupancy and high efficiency have assigned a large proportion of markets.

In plate heat exchangers, hot and cold fluids inter to the duct network in the opposite directions. The cold and hot fluid plates are placed side by side in order to exchange heat between two fluids. On the two adjacent plates, the cold and hot stream flows in opposite directions along each other.

Because of the high turbulence of the fluid flow in the plate heat exchanger, heat exchanging is performed with higher efficiency. The heat transfer coefficients of the thermal plate heat exchangers are about 3 to 6 times of the tubular heat exchangers.

Due to the high heat transfer efficiency, plate heat exchangers require less space and occupy less space about 20 to 50 percent than shell heat exchangers. As a result, there is a good option in cases where space constraints exist.

In this analysis, it has been tried to simulate and analyze the flow inside a series plate heat exchanger by Ansys Fluent software.

Geometry and Mesh

Required geometry for this analysis consists of 2 cube volume with a very thin thickness. Geometry and also meshing has been modeled in the Gambit software. The type of meshing in this analysis is unstructured and the number of cells is equal to 2062578.


The heat transfer in such exchangers is a kind of forced convection heat transfer, therefore K-epsilon Realizable model is used to analyze the stream turbulency. Also, energy equations have been solved with the momentum equations.

Boundary Condition

Flow entry for the hot and cold fluid inlet is considered as the Mass Flow Inlet. Values for cold fluid are 0.00361 Kg/s at 276.5K and for hot fluid is 0.0045 kg/s at 286.2K. Thermal boundary condition of the internal wall is considered as COUPLED module according to the working conditions. The output of the converter is considered as Pressure-Outlet. External wall of the converter is also considered as an insulator.

Discretization of equations

By considering the type of heat transferring in this analysis, Pressure-Based solver has been used for solving equations. SIMPLE algorithm has been used to discretize the coupled equations of velocity and pressure. Momentum and energy equations have been discretized in form of Second Order Upwind.

Results have been shown as thermal, and velocity contours.

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