In this work, a numerical investigation on two-dimensional steady state natural convection in a horizontal channel partially filled with a porous medium and heated at uniform heat flux from above is carried out. The lower plate is adiabatic. The porous medium is modeled using the Brinkman–Forchheimer-extended Darcy model and the local thermal equilibrium (LTE) hypothesis is assumed. The structure of the porous medium is homogenous and isotropic, the thermophysical properties of the air and the porous medium are temperature independent and the fluid flow is laminar and incompressible. The aluminum foam has 10, 20 and 40 pore per inches (PPI) and its porosity ranges from 0.90 and 0.95. Rayleigh number values are examined, from 6.0 × 104 and 1.2 × 107. Results are presented in terms of velocity and temperature fields, temperature and velocity profiles at different significant sections are shown, to obtain a description of the natural convection inside the open-ended cavity. Finally, Average Nusselt number values are evaluated. The horizontal open cavity partially filled with metal foam presents improved heat transfer behavior for higher Rayleigh numbers. The enhancement depends on the porosity and pore density. The average Nusselt number for the partially filled open cavity is the double of the configuration without the foam, clear configuration, for the highest considered Rayleigh number.

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