Investigation of flow and heat transfer in micro channels using nano-fluids

Overview:
Cutting edge technologies are increasingly dependent on the safe dissipation of huge amounts of heat from very small areas. With the advancement of the semiconductor industry alongside hybrid vehicle power electronics and avionics, heat dissipation has become a critical factor in the development of more powerful miniaturised electronic devices. The increase in power, performance and heat flux per unit area of these miniaturised electronic devices have caused it to generate higher temperatures which requires advance cooling technologies. Conventional cooling systems cannot dissipate this excessive heat fast and effectively from the smaller surfaces. Hence more novel cooling systems are required to enhance the performance and life span of these electronic devices. Micro channels have become an essential alternative for cooling electronics due to its effective heat transfer capabilities, miniature size, high surface area-volume ratio and less working fluid demand. Coupling the use of nano-fluids which can deliver a higher heat transfer compared to conventional fluids such as water and ethylene glycol, can provide an enhanced heat transfer performance when compared to conventional cooling systems.
The objective of this research work will be to build a general purpose experimental test rig to assess the thermal performance, flow and pressure drop characteristics of the nano-fluid flow in a microchannel heat sink. The experiment will be carried out using selected nano-fluids of various volume concentrations. The effects of the thermophysical properties of the nano-fluid on the thermal performance and flow characteristics will also be investigated. Numerical methods using CFD will be used alongside experiments to investigate innovative designs of the microchannel. It is expected that the outputs of this project will further advance and support the development of the micro channel cooling capability.

Person specification
Cutting edge technologies are increasingly dependent on the safe dissipation of huge amounts of heat from very small areas. With the advancement of the semiconductor industry alongside hybrid vehicle power electronics and avionics, heat dissipation has become a critical factor in the development of more powerful miniaturised electronic devices. The increase in power, performance and heat flux per unit area of these miniaturised electronic devices have caused it to generate higher temperatures which requires advance cooling technologies. Conventional cooling systems cannot dissipate this excessive heat fast and effectively from the smaller surfaces. Hence more novel cooling systems are required to enhance the performance and life span of these electronic devices. Micro channels have become an essential alternative for cooling electronics due to its effective heat transfer capabilities, miniature size, high surface area-volume ratio and less working fluid demand. Coupling the use of nano-fluids which can deliver a higher heat transfer compared to conventional fluids such as water and ethylene glycol, can provide an enhanced heat transfer performance when compared to conventional cooling systems.
The objective of this research work will be to build a general purpose experimental test rig to assess the thermal performance, flow and pressure drop characteristics of the nano-fluid flow in a microchannel heat sink. The experiment will be carried out using selected nano-fluids of various volume concentrations. The effects of the thermophysical properties of the nano-fluid on the thermal performance and flow characteristics will also be investigated. Numerical methods using CFD will be used alongside experiments to investigate innovative designs of the microchannel. It is expected that the outputs of this project will further advance and support the development of the micro channel cooling capability.

Funding notes
The opportunity is open to Home, EU and International applicants who meet the required Birmingham City University eligibility criteria. The PhD studentship includes a full stipend, paid for a period of 3 years at RCUK rates (in 2019/20 this is £15,009 pa) and fees at Home/EU rate. This studentship will start in September 2019. International applicants are eligible to apply for this studentship but must meet the shortfall on fees between Home/EU and International rate.

References
Etaig, Saleh, Hasan, Reaz and Perera, Noel (2018) A new effective viscosity model for nanofluids, International Journal of Numerical Methods for Heat & Fluid Flow, Vol. 28 Issue: 3, pp.571‐583, DOI: 10.1108/HFF‐11‐2016‐0462
Etaig, Saleh, Hasan, Reaz and Perera, Noel (2018) Investigation of natural convection characteristics with Brownian motion effect using different nanofluids. Multiphase Science and Technology, Vol. 30, Issue: 2-3, pp. 135-152 DOI: 10.1615/MultScienTechn.2018024685
Etaig, Saleh, Hasan, Reaz and Perera, Noel (2017) Investigation of the flow characteristics of titanium-oxide-water nanofluid in microchannel with circular cross section. American Journal of Nano Research and Applications; 5(6) pp.102-109 DOI: 10.11648/j.nano.20170506.14

How to apply
The closing date for applications is 12am on Wednesday 17 July 2019.
You can find details on studying for a PhD and details of how to apply here – https://www.bcu.ac.uk/courses/bsbe-research-degrees-phd-2019-20
When applying, please complete the online application form through the above provided link where you will be required to upload your proposal in place of a personal statement.

Contact
For Informal academic enquiries please contact the Director of Studies, Associate Professor Dr Noel Perera (noel.perera@bcu.ac.uk) of the Computational Modelling Research Group, Centre of Engineering, School of Engineering and the Built Environment, Faculty of Computing, Engineering and the Built Environment, Birmingham City University.
For all administrative enquiries please contact Bernadette Allen (bernadette.allen@bcu.ac.uk) from the Doctoral College, Faculty of Computing, Engineering and the Built Environment, Birmingham City University.

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