Date of Award

8-1-2011

Degree Name

Master of Science

Department

Mechanical Engineering

First Advisor

Mathias, James

Abstract

Utilizing an experimental facility which was prepared to conduct performance tests on heat exchangers; experiments were completed in an attempt to see verifiable improvements in overall heat transfer coefficient in engine coolant with nanoparticles suspended at different weight percentages. The different fluids tested were: base ELC (Extended Life Coolant), ELC with 0.002 wt% CNT (Carbon Nanotubes), ELC with 0.02 wt% CNT, ELC with 0.02 wt% MWNT's (Multiwalled Nanotubes) and water. The volume percents range from 0.00164 volume% to 0.0164 volume% which seemed quite small, but according to Caterpillar representatives, were the best concentration. These fluids were tested at standard flowrates which this type of heat exchanger would be used in as well as a higher air flowrate and lower coolant flowrates in an attempt to gather more verifiable data. Results were obtained regarding the change in heat transfer ability of engine coolant with suspended nanoparticles. For this system under these specific conditions, there was verifiably no increase in UA as nanoparticles were added to the coolant. The benefits of adding nanoparticles to engine coolant have potential to be great, but the cost of nanoparticles and difficulty keeping them suspended may outweigh any benefits obtainable in this type of set up.

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