Shell-side transfer in shell-and-tube heat exchangers

  • Sukhvinder P.S. Nibber

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy


Local mass transfer coefficients were determined by using the electrochemical technique. A simple model of a heat exchanger with segmental nickel tube joined to p.v.c. rods replaced the exchanger tubes. Measurements were made for both no-Ieakage, semi-leakage and total leakage configurations. Baffle-spacings of 47.6 mm, 66.6 mm, 97 mm and 149.2 mm wer studied. Also studied were the overall exchanger pressure drops for each configuration.
The comparison of the heat transfer data with this work showed good agreement at high flow rates for the no-leakage case, but the agreement became poor for lower flow rates and leakage configurations. This disagreement was explained by non-analogous driving forces existing in the two systems.
The no-leakage data showed length-wise variation of transfer coefficients along the exchanger length. The end compartments showing transfer coefficients inferior
by up to 26% compared to tbe internal compartments, depending on Reynolds number. With the introduction of leakage streams this variation however became smaller than the experimental accuracy. A model is outlined to show the characteristic behaviour of individual electrode segments within the compartment. This was able to discriminate between cross and window zones for the no-
leakage case, but no such distinction could be made for the leakage case.
A flow area was found which, when incorporated in the Reynolds number, enabled the correlation of baffle-cut and baffle-spacing parameters for the no-leakage case . This area is the free flow area determined at the baffle edge. Addition of the leakage area to this flow area resulted in correlation of all commercial leakage geometrical parameters.
The procedures used to correlate the pressure drop data from a total of eighteen different configurations on a single curve are also outlined.
Date of AwardOct 1981
Original languageEnglish
SupervisorG.V. Jeffreys (Supervisor)


  • length-wise
  • transfer coefficients
  • correlations
  • shell-and -tube
  • electrochemical

Cite this