Multiscale numerical research on nucleate boiling enhancement from microscale to nanoscale

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Article number109494
Journal / PublicationAnnals of Nuclear Energy
Online published2 Oct 2022
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2023


Nucleate boiling enhancement from surfaces in energy industries is of fundamental significance for improving energy conversion and thermal management efficiency. This study investigates the microscale and nanoscale boiling processes on the hybrid wettability micropillar structured surface (MPS) to continuously enhance nucleate boiling. The microscale and nanoscale boiling processes and underlying enhancement mechanisms are studied by Lattice Boltzmann Method (LBM) and Molecular Dynamics (MD) simulations, respectively. It is revealed that MPS designed with a hydrophilic bottom surface and a hydrophobic top surface decorated with nanopillars can improve nucleate boiling throughout the microscale and nanoscale boiling process. The microscopic boiling process of the hybrid wettability MPS shows that the synergistic effect of wettability and surface structure is attributed to nucleation boiling enhancement due to higher bubble nucleation density and higher bubble departure frequency. The nanoscale boiling process on hydrophobic nanopillar structured surfaces (NPS) shows further nucleate boiling enhancement. The NPS with a nanopillar height of 1.6268 nm is in the Wenzel state with higher heat flux and lower thermal resistance, resulting in faster boiling onset and shorter separation time, while the hydrophobic NPSs in the Cassie state leads to a deterioration in the nucleate boiling.

Research Area(s)

  • Lattice Boltzmann, Microscale Boiling, Molecular Dynamics, Nanoscale Boiling, Nucleate Boiling Enhancement