Improved Prediction of Shell Side Heat Transfer in Horizontal Evaporative Shell and Tube Heat Exchangers
AbstractThis paper presents an improved prediction method for the heat transfer and pressure drop in the shell side of a horizontal shell and tube evaporator. The results from an experimental test program are used in which a wide range of evaporating two-phase shell side flow data was collected from a TEMA E-shell evaporator. The data are compared with shell side heat transfer coefficient and pressure drop models for homogeneous and stratified flow. The comparison suggests a deterioration in the heat transfer data at low mass fluxes consistent with a transition from homogeneous to stratified flow. The pressure drop data suggest a stratified flow across the full test range. A new model is presented that suggests the transition in the heat transfer data may be due to the extent of tube wetting in the upper tube bundle. The new model, which also takes into account the orientation of the shell side baffles, provides a vast improvement on the predictions of a homogenous type model. The new model would enable designers of shell side evaporators/reboilers to avoid operating conditions where poor heat transfer could be expected, and it would also enable changes in process conditions to be assessed for their implications on likely heat transfer performance.