Abstract

Over the past few decades, microscale duct flow has been the key element for many applications, such as drug delivery and microelectronics cooling. To enhance the performance of such systems and to save more energy, looking for new ways to control the hydrodynamic and thermal characteristics of the microchannel flow has been of great interest lately. The aim of this research is to gain a better understanding of the flow physics within microchannels with microtextured walls. Therefore, a set of numerical study has been conducted on the combined effect of flow and heat transfer for spanwise rectangular trenches. The surface microstructures increase the wetting surface area, which is supposed to increase friction (skin drag). Recirculation produced inside the grooves, on the other hand, aids in increasing main flow slippage and lowering pressure drop along the microchannel. It is also worth noting that recirculation creates a negative pressure difference in the opposite direction of the flow (pressure drag). The geometrical parameters of the trenches have a significant impact on the trade-off between the drag reducing and drag increasing factors in textured microchannel flow, which is addressed in this research. Furthermore, the textures disrupt the thermal boundary layer, which can boost thermal transport through recirculation mixing. However, the stagnant fluid trapped within the grooves has weak convective heat transfer. So far, the results have been promising and a drag reduction of about 25% has been reported for wide trenches at low Reynolds numbers. Thermal transport enhancement is also possible for some tested geometries when the flow has not achieved the thermally fully development.

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