Mixed convection heat transfer from thermal sources mounted on horizontal and vertical surfaces

S. S. Tewari, Y. Jaluria

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An experimental study is carried out on the fundamental aspects of the conjugate, mixed convective heat transfer from two finite width heat sources, which are of negligible thickness, have a uniform heat flux input at the surface, and are located on a flat plate in the horizontal or the vertical orientation. The heat sources are wide in the transverse direction and, therefore, a two-dimensional flow circumstance is simulated. The mixed convection parameter is varied over a fairly wide range to include the buoyancy-dominated and the mixed convection regimes. The circumstances of pure natural convection are also investigated. The convective mechanisms have been studied in detail by measuring the surface temperatures and determining the heat transfer coefficients for the two heated strips, which represent isolated thermal sources. Experimental results indicate that a stronger upstream heat source causes an increase in the surface temperature of a relatively weaker heat source, located downstream, by reducing its convective heat transfer coefficient. The influence of the upstream source is found to be strongly dependent on the surface orientation, especially in the pure natural convection and the buoyancy dominated regimes. The two heat sources are found to be essentially independent of each other, in terms of thermal effects, at a separation distance of more than about three strip widths for both the orientations. The results obtained are relevant to many engineering applications, such as the cooling of electronic systems, positioning of heating elements in furnaces, and safety considerations in enclosure fires.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)975-987
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Heat Transfer
Issue number4
StatePublished - Nov 1990

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


  • Conjugate heat transfer
  • Electronic equipment
  • Mixed convection


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