Conjugate heat transfer les of thermal mixing in a T-junction

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    Turbulent mixing of hot and cold fluids may lead to high-cycle thermal fatigue in piping of nuclear power plants. In this work, the mixing in a T-junction experiment is studied by large-eddy simulation (LES). Conjugate heat transfer (CHT) between fluid and pipe wall is studied by replacing the plexiglass pipe of the experiment with a steel one. Different inlet and wall boundary conditions are first considered. Steady and turbulent inlets are compared, as well as adiabatic and CHT wall conditions. The turbulent inlets are created by using the vortex method which is validated for fully developed flow. The inlets are shown to have only small effect in bulk of the flow, but non-negligible effect near walls. The adiabatic and CHT cases show practically no difference in the logarithmic layer and upward, whereas near walls the difference becomes significant due to thermal inertia of the pipe wall. In bulk of the flow, the mean and fluctuating quantities show good agreement with the experiment. CHT simulations by using different meshes and flow velocities are then considered. A coarse mesh is found to yield qualitative agreement but significant errors in e.g. Reynolds stresses near walls. Temperature fluctuation intensity at the pipe inner surface is fairly similar for both meshes. Normalized profiles and spectra for different velocities are qualitatively similar, but some differences exist e.g. in distributions of wall temperature fluctuation intensity
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)483-496
    JournalNuclear Engineering and Design
    Publication statusPublished - 2014
    MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


    • CFD
    • conjugate heat transfer
    • LES
    • thermal fatigue
    • turbulent mixing


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