Numerical analysis of a solar air heater for improved performance using cylindrical turbulators with ribs

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2 Citations (Scopus)


Space heating and drying purpose for domestic, commercial and industrial applications are done these days using solar air heaters. Lot of research has been carried out to improve the performance of solar collectors using different types of turbulator design. In this study a typical cylindrical turbulator design with ribs has been analyzed for improvement in thermal performance of solar air heater. It is observed from the CFD study that there is a significant improvement in thermal performance for air heater configuration with such turbulators when compared to plain duct configuration for a wide range of mass flow rate with Reynolds number varying from 3000 to 20000. The presence of cylindrical turbulators with ribs improves the Nusselt number by about 18% for flow Reynolds number in the neighborhood of 10000 for a longitudinal turbulator pitch ratio of 1. However, at higher flow Reynolds number of 20000, the thermal performance of turbulator configuration is the highest at 12% for a pitch ratio of 0.5; This indicates that there is an optimum mass flow rate for which there is an enhanced performance related to the longitudinal pitch ratio of turbulators.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)296-309
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Mechanical Engineering and Technology
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 01-08-2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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