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World Academy of Science, Engineering and Technology

International Journal of Mathematical, Computational, Physical, Electrical and Computer Engineering Vol:7, No:2, 2013

Conjugate Heat Transfer in an Enclosure Containing


a Polygon Object

International Science Index, Mathematical and Computational Sciences Vol:7, No:2, 2013 waset.org/Publication/7036

Habibis Saleh and Ishak Hashim

AbstractConjugate natural convection in a differentially heated


square enclosure containing a polygon shaped object is studied
numerically in this article. The effect of various polygon types on the
uid ow and thermal performance of the enclosure is addressed for
different thermal conductivities. The governing equations are modeled
and solved numerically using the built-in nite element method of
COMSOL software. It is found that the heat transfer rate remains
stable by varying the polygon types.
KeywordsNatural convection, Polygon object, COMSOL

I. I NTRODUCTION
ATURAL convection heat transfer in a differentially
heated enclosures from side or below has received considerable attention over the past few decades, largely due to
a wide variety of applications, which include double pane
windows, electronic boxes, solar collector technology, energy
storage, nuclear reactor technology, etc. Another practical
application of natural convection is encountered when an
obstacle such as an inserted object placed inside the enclosure.
Many authors reported that this inserted object changes the
ow eld and the heat transfer characteristics of the enclosure.
Ref. [1] reported the heat transfer may be enhanced or
reduced by a square object with a thermal conductivity ratio
less or greater than unity. Ref. [2] found placing the solid
objects near to the walls reduce the rate of heat transfer due
to the blockage effects, but placing low conductor objects far
from the boundary layer region may enhance the rate of heat
transfer compared with enclosures without obstacles. Ref. [3]
reported a critical size of the adiabatic object below which the
increasing the size increases the heat transfer and above which
the increasing the size decreases the heat transfer. Ref. [4]
studied when the enclosure were given an inclination angle.
Ref. [5] moved to an inserted cylinder object in the center
of the enclosure. They concluded that the thermophysical
properties of the cylinder object were important on the overall
heat transfer process across the enclosure.
Present work aims to investigate the uid ow and heat
transfer for various polygon types placed inside the center
of the square enclosure. Complete two dimensional numerical
simulation and systematical generalization of the conjugate
heat transfer behavior occurring in the enclosure by varying
the obstacles shaped is carried out.

II. M ATHEMATICAL F ORMULATION


A schematic diagram of a square enclosure having a conductive regular polygon placed at the center is shown in in
H. Saleh and I. Hashim are with School of Mathematical Sciences,
Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, 43600 Bangi Selangor, Malaysia, e-mail:
Dr.habibissaleh@gmail.com and ishak h@ukm.my.
Manuscript received January , 2013; revised January , 2013.

International Scholarly and Scientific Research & Innovation 7(2) 2013

Fig. 1.

Schematic representation of the model

Fig. 1. The left surface is heated to a constant temperature


Th , and the right surface of the enclosure is cooled to a
constant temperature Tc , while the horizontal surfaces are kept
adiabatic. Thermophysical properties of the uid in the ow
eld are assumed to be constant except the density variations
causing a body force term in the momentum equation. The
Boussinesq approximation is invoked for the uid properties
to relate density changes to temperature changes, and to couple
in this way the temperature eld to the ow eld. Under the
above assumptions, the governing equations for steady natural
convection ow using conservation of mass, momentum and
energy can be written in its dimensionless form as follows:
U
+
X
U
U
+V
X
V
+V
U
X
U

V
Y
U
Y
V
Y

f
f
+V
X
Y

= 0
=
=

(1)

P
U
U
+ Pr
(2)
+
X
X 2
Y 2
 2

2V
P
V

+ Pr
+
2
Y
X
Y 2
+Ra P r f
(3)
 2

2 f
f
(4)
+
X 2
Y 2

and the energy equation for the conducting polygon is:


2 s
2 s
+
=0
2
X
Y 2

(5)

The values of the nondimensional velocity are zero in the


solid region and on the solid-uid interfaces. The boundary

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scholar.waset.org/1999.7/7036

World Academy of Science, Engineering and Technology


International Journal of Mathematical, Computational, Physical, Electrical and Computer Engineering Vol:7, No:2, 2013

4.7
2

6
.1 3
3.44.77
2.014
0.68

0.68

3.41
4.77

7.6

0.84

2.04

6.13

5.9
1

0.84
2.53

2.53

0.8

0.94

5.91
4.22

0.84

6.13
6.13

2.8

0.94

7.6

5.91
4.22
2.53

.4
3

.94

.6

.2

0.68

2.83

2.83

7.6

4.7

6.61
4.72

.9
5

8.4

4.72

3.4
4.77

6.1

5.91
4.22
2.53

6.61

0.94
2.83

0.68
2.04

3.41

7.6

8.49

6.61
4.72

8.4

5.91

0.84
2.53
4.22

6.61

4.77

4.77
6.13

8.4

0.94

4.72

6.61

2.83

.49

.53

4.2

7.6

0.68
2.04

3.4

0.68
2.04

4.72

6.61

2.53
4.22

5.91

13

.83

0.68

0.84

6
.

min =-6.816

0.84

0.84

2.83

0.94

2.83
4.72

0.94
2.83
4.72
6.6
1

min =-8.4462
0.84
2.53
2
4.2

0.94

0.94

2
.04

min =-9.4381
0.94

2.5

2.04

0.84

4.77
3.41
2.04

4.77
3.41
2.04

.68

0.68

0.68

5.23

2
3.74

6.7
0.85

.23

6.7
5.23

3.74
2.24
0.75

.7

0.75

0.85

6.7

5.2

0.85

2.24

3
.6

2.5

2.54

0.75

0.75

3.74
5.2
3
6.7
2

0.75
2.24

2.54

5.94

0.85

0.85
2.54
4.24
5.9
4
7.6
3

2
4.7

0.94

6.61

0.85
2.54

0.94
2.83
4.72
6.6
1

0.94
2.83

2.24

5.94

4.24

2.54

.85

0.94

7.63
5.94

4
4
2.2

4.24

6.7

3.7

2.83

0.94

.94

.9

2.83

5.23

.6

2.83

6.61
4.72

.63

0.75
2.24

3.74
5.23
2
6.7

4.24

8.5

4.72

4.24

8.5

6.61
4.72

8.5

0.94

4.72

8.5

6.61

5.94

7.63

6.61

0.75

3.74

.2

4
3.7

4.72

6.61

.
8

4.24

.83

2.24

2.54

4.24
5.94

0.75

0.85

4.2

2.83

min =-7.4717

0.85

.5

2.83
4.72

0.85
2.54

0.94

0.94

2.83

0.94

min =-8.4811
2

International Science Index, Mathematical and Computational Sciences Vol:7, No:2, 2013 waset.org/Publication/7036

(a) N = 3
min =-9.4485

5
3.74
2.24
0.75

(b) N = 4

0.8
2.4

7.2

2.61

4.34

2.6

0.87

4
2.4

7.2
5.6

2.4

7.2
5.6
4

2.4

2.4

.8

0.87

0.8

0.87

4.3

6.08
2.61

.8

0.95

7.82

6.08

.6

7.2

4.34

0.8

4
5.6

0.8
2.4

6.08
2
7.8

.82

0.95

4.7

0.87

0.87
2.61
4.3
4
6.0
8
7.82

0.87
2.61

2.85

6.64

0.95
2.85

2.8

0.95

.2

5.6

2.85

.95

6.64
4.74

2.85

4.74

6.0
4.34

8.5

6.64

4.34

8.54

6.64
4.74

8.54

0.95

4.74

8.54

7.8

7.2

6.08

7.82

0.8

.4

6.64

0.8
2.4
4
5.6

6.08

4.74

6.64

4.34

.6

.85

.5
8

2.61

4.34

0.8
2.4
4
5.6

0.87

2.85

min =-8.0054

0.87

2.85
4.74

0.95
2.85
4.74
6.6
4

min =-8.6875
0.87
2.61

0.95

0.95

2.61

min =-9.4844
0.95

0.8

0.8

(c) N = 5

2.83

0.94

0.94

0.81
2.44

2.61

2.61

.8

4.35

0.87

2.61

0.87

2.44

.8

.7

4.07

7.33
5.7
4.07

2.44
0.81

Streamlines for different polygon size, A and number of polygon sides, N at Kr = 1 and Ra = 105 .

International Scholarly and Scientific Research & Innovation 7(2) 2013

242

2.4

0.81

(d) N =
Fig. 2.

0.81

scholar.waset.org/1999.7/7036

0.81

6.08

5.7

4.3

6.08

4.07
2.44

7.3

7.3

5
4.35
0

7.3
3

4.07
5.7

0.81
2.44

6.08

7.82

0.87

0.87
2.61
4.3
5
6.0
8

7.82

0.94

4.7

2.8

.33

7.8
2

6.61

2.83

0.94
2.83
4.72
6
.61

0.94
2.83
.9

6.61
4.72

2.83
0

.82

.0
4

4.72

5.7

6.0
4.35

8.5

6.61

.0
4

7.8

4.35

8.5

6.61
4.72
8.5

0.94

4.72

8.5

7.33

6.08

7.82

0.81

6.61

0.81
2.44
4.07
5.7

.4
2

6.08

4.72

6.61
.5

4.35

1
.6

.83

2.61

4.35

0.81
2.44
4.07
5.7

0.87
2

2.83

min =-8.1459

0.87

0.87

0.94

2.83
4.72

0.87
2.61

0.94

0.87
2.61

0.94

min =-8.6912

2.61

min =-9.448

World Academy of Science, Engineering and Technology


International Journal of Mathematical, Computational, Physical, Electrical and Computer Engineering Vol:7, No:2, 2013

4.75

conditions for the non-dimensional temperatures are:


(6)

4.65

(7)
Nu

(8)

4.45
4.4
4.35
3

IV. R ESULTS AND D ISCUSSION


Fig. 2 illustrates the streamlines for various types of solid
polygon where the solid area attains the value /100, /25
and /16, respectively. The thermal conductivity ratio is xed
at Kr = 1 and the Rayleigh number at Ra = 105 . The uid
temperature adjoining the hot surface rises and move from
the left to the right, falling along the cold surface, then rising
again at the hot surface. This movement creates a clockwise
circulation cell in free space between the polygon and walls
enclosure. The cell shape near the polygon was distorted by
the presence polygon, N 5. The distortion takes higher
as the polygon size is made bigger. The strength of the ow
circulation decreases by increasing the solid area for the same
polygon type. It is obvious that increasing the A leads to

International Scholarly and Scientific Research & Innovation 7(2) 2013

169

121

10

11

(a)
4.6
4.55
4.5
4.45
4.4
Kr
Kr
Kr
Kr

4.35
4.3
0

= 0.1
= 0.5
= 2.0
= 10.0

400

289

225

81

36

16

(b)

III. C OMPUTATIONAL M ETHODOLOGY


The governing equations along with the boundary conditions are solved numerically by the CFD software package
COMSOL Multiphysics. COMSOL Multiphysics (formerly
FEMLAB) is a nite element analysis, solver and simulation
software package for various physics and engineering applications. We consider the following application modes in COMSOL Multiphysics. The Incompressible Navier-stokes Equations mode (ns) for Eqs. (1)(3), the ConvectionConduction
Equations mode (cc) for Eq. (4) and the Diffusion Equations
mode (di) for Eq. (5). In this study, mesh generation on
square enclosure containing polygon object is made by using
triangles. Several grid sensitivity tests were conducted to
determine the sufciency of the mesh scheme and to ensure
that the results are grid independent. We use a ner mesh sizes
for all the computations done in this paper.

4.55
4.5

(9)

where Kr = ks /kf is the thermal conductivity ratio. All sides


of the solid polygon are equal in length. Number of sides
is denoted by N , where for N = 3 the shape is triangle,
for N = 4 the shape is quadrilateral, for N = 5 the shape
is pentagon, for N = 6 the shape is hexagon, for N = 7
the shape is heptagon, for N = 8 the shape is hexagon, for
N = 9 the shape is nonagon, for N = 10 the shape is decagon,
for N = 11 the shape is hendecagon and for N = the
shape becomes cylinder. The polygon to enclosure area ratio
is dened by:
sin( 360
N
A = R2 N
)
(10)
2
The physical quantities of interest in this problem are the
average Nusselt number along the hot wall which is dened
by:
 1
f
dY
(11)
Nu =
Y
0

= 0.1
= 0.5
= 2.0
= 10.0

4.6

Nu

International Science Index, Mathematical and Computational Sciences Vol:7, No:2, 2013 waset.org/Publication/7036

= 1 at X = 0, = 0 at X = 1

= 0 at Y = 0 and Y = 1
Y
= s at the outer polygon surface

s
= Kr
at the inner polygon surface

Kr
Kr
Kr
Kr

4.7

Fig. 3. Variation of N u with N (a), with A (b) for different values of Kr .

smaller space for the ow to circulate. At xed A, increasing


N increases the ow strength, as indicated from ||min values.
This increasing occurs except at small cylinder, A = /100,
where the ow strength much weaker than the small solid
pentagon inserted in enclosure.
Variations of the average Nusselt number with the number
of polygon sides are shown in Fig. 3(a) for different thermal
conductivity ratio at Ra = 105 and A = /25. The average
Nusselt number was shown stable for solid pentagon and
above. Increasing thermal conductivity ratio increases the N u
at xed N . Variations of the average Nusselt number with
the polygon areas are shown in Fig. 3(b) for different thermal
conductivity ratio at Ra = 105 and N = 5. Fig. 3(b) exhibits a
critical size of the solid pentagon is exist at low conductivities,
Kr = 0.1, 0.5; below which, the increasing the size increases
the N u and above which the increasing the size decreases the
N u.
V. C ONCLUSION
The present numerical simulations study the effects various solid polygon properties on natural convection inside a
square enclosure. The dimensionless forms of the governing
equations were solved using the COMSOL Multiphysics software. Detailed computational results for uid ow and heat
transfer characteristics in the enclosure have been presented
in graphical forms. We conclude that the heat transfer rate

243

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World Academy of Science, Engineering and Technology


International Journal of Mathematical, Computational, Physical, Electrical and Computer Engineering Vol:7, No:2, 2013

remains stable by varying the number of polygon sides. The


theoretical prediction in this paper is hoped to be a useful guide
for the experimentalists to study the various combinations of
the polygon shaped and its thermal conductivity properties to
control the uid ow and thermal performance of enclosure
at different size. The factors of polygon location, orientation
and rotation with different angular speed will be the focus of
our research undertaking.

International Science Index, Mathematical and Computational Sciences Vol:7, No:2, 2013 waset.org/Publication/7036

R EFERENCES
[1] J. House, C. Beckermann, and T. Smith, Effect of a centered conducting
body on natural convection heat transfer in an enclosure, Numer. Heat
Transf. Part A, vol. 18, pp. 213225, 1990.
[2] A. A. Merrikh and A. A. Mohamad, Blockage effects in natural convection in differentially heated enclosures, J. of Enhanced Heat Transfer,
vol. 8, pp. 5572, 2001.
[3] P. Bhave, A. Narasimhan, and D. A. S. Rees, Natural convection heat
transfer enhancement using adiabatic block: Optimal block size and
Prandtl number effect, Int. J. Heat Mass Transf., vol. 49, pp. 38073818,
2006.
[4] M. Das and K. Reddy, Conjugate natural convection heat transfer in an inclined square cavity containing a conducting block,
Int. J. Heat Mass Transf., vol. 49, pp. 49875000, 2006.
[5] V. Costa and A. Raimundo, Steady mixed convection in a differentially heated square enclosure with an active rotating circular cylinder,
Int. J. Heat Mass Transf., vol. 53, pp. 12081219, 2010.

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