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Condensation occurs when a vapor contacts a surface that is at a temperature below

the saturation of the vapor. When the liquid condensate forms on the surface, it will flow
under the influence of gravity. Normally the liquid wets the surface, spreads out, and forms a
film. Such a process is called film condensation. If the surface is not wetted by the liquid,
then droplets form run down the surface, coalescing as they contact other condensate
droplets. This process is designated dropwise condensation. After a condensate film has been
developed in filmwise condensation, additional condensation will occur at the liquidvapor
interface, and the associated energy transfer must occur by conduction through the
condensate film. Dropwise condensation, on the contrary, always has some surface present as
the condensate drop forms and runs off. Dropwise condensation is, therefore, associated with
the higher heat-transfer rates of the two types of condensation phenomena. Dropwise
condensation is very difficult to achieve or maintain commercially; therefore, all equipment
is designed on the basis of filmwise condensation.

Film Condensation

The Nusselt Model. In 1916, Nusselt10 achieved an analytical result for the problem
of filmwise condensation of a pure vapor on a vertical wall. The meanings of the various
terms in this analysis will be made clear by referring to Figure 4.1. In this figure, the film
thickness, d, is seen to be zero at the top of the vertical wall, x 0, and to increase with
increasing values of x.

Figure 4.1 Filmwise condensation on a vertical plane wall.

The initial assumption made by Nusselt was that of wholly laminar flow in the condensate
film. Under these conditions, the velocity profile may be easily obtained from equation 4-1


For the present application, sin u 1 and L d. It is also necessary to modify the density
for the present case. In the derivation of equation (4-1), the density of the gas or vapor at the
liquid surface was neglected. This may be true in many cases of a condensation process;
however, the process may occur at a sufficiently high pressure that the vapor density, v, is
significant in comparison to that of the liquid, L. To account for this possibility, the density
function to be used in the present case is L-v instead of simply L. The resulting
expression for the velocity profile in the condensate film at a particular distance x from the
top of the wall becomes

The flow rate per unit width, , at any value x > 0 is

As the flow of condensate is assumed to be laminar, it is not unreasonable to consider energy
transfer through the film from the temperature at the vaporliquid interface, Tsat, to the wall
liquid boundary at temperature, Tw, to be purely by conduction. On this basis, the temperature
profile is linear and the heat flux to the wall is

This same amount of energy must be transferred from the vapor as it condenses and then
cools to the average liquid temperature. Relating these two effects, may write


The equation will become

l l ghfg k l 3
h 0.943

l LTsat Tw

1/ 4


The latent heat term, hfg, and those preceding it, should be evaluated at the saturation
temperature. Liquid properties should all be taken at the film temperature. An expression
similar achieved for a surface inclined at an angle u from the horizontal if sin u is introduced
into the bracketed term. This extension obviously has a limit and should not be used when u
is small, that is, when the surface is near horizontal.

However, for laminar flow, experimental data are about 20% above Eq. (4-6). Hence,
the final recommended expression for vertical surfaces in laminar flow is shown as Eq. (4-7):
l l ghfg L3



l l

1/ 4

N Nu

where l is the density of liquid in kg/m3 and that of the vapor, g is 9.8066 m/s2, L is the
vertical height of the surface or tube in m, l is the viscosity of liquid in Pas, kl is the liquid
thermal conductivity in W/mK, T = Tsat-Tw in K, and hfg is the latent heat of condensation
in J/kg at Tsat. All physical properties of the liquid except hfg are evaluated at the film
temperature Tf = (Tsat + Tw)/2. For long vertical surfaces the flow at the bottom can be
turbulent. The Reynolds number is defined as;

N Re


D l l

(vertical tube, diameter D).(4-8)


4m 4

W l l

(vertical plate, width W).(4-9)

Where m is the total kg mass/s of condensate at tube or plate bottom and = m/D or m/W.
The NRe should be below 1800 for Eq. (4-7) to hold. The reader should note that some
references define NRe as /. Then this NRe should be below 450.

For turbulent flow for NRe 1800;

1/ 3

N Nu

g l 2 L3


NRe 0.4


Solution of this equation is by trial and error, since a value of NRe must first be assumed in
order to calculate h.

Dropwise Condensation

For dropwise condensation, as mentioned earlier, is associated with higher heattransfer coefficients than the filmwise condensation phenomenon. For dropwise condensation
to occur, the surface must not be wetted by the condensate. Normally this requires that
metal surfaces be specially treated. Dropwise condensation is an attractive phenomenon for
applications where extremely large heat-transfer rates are desired. At present, it is difficult to
maintain this condition for several reasons. Because of its uncertain nature and the
conservative approach of a design
based on lower heat-transfer coefficients, filmwise condensation is the type predominantly
used in design.


1. Pressure Relief Valve

2. Indicators
3. Flow meter
4. Discharge Valve
5. Pressure Transmitter
6. Separator
7. Dropwise Condenser
8. Filmwise Condenser
9. Coiled-Heater
10. Vacuum Ejector


Cooling water is circulated through the filmwise condenser starting

General Start-Up Procedures
1. The main switch is ensured to be in off position.
2. The power regulator knobs are fully turned anti-clockwise to set the power regulator
to minimum.
3. Valves V1 and V6 are checked to ensure it were closed.
4. The chamber is filled with distilled water until the water level stays between the
heaters and baffles plate. The heater is making sure to be fully immersed in the water
throughout the experiment. Valve V4 was opened; water could be filled into the
chamber through the drain. Then, the vent valve, V4 is closed.
5. Water flow rate to the condenser is adjusted by controlling the control valve
according to the experimental procedure.
6. Main switch and heater switch is turned on. The heater power is set by rotating the
power regulator clockwise to increase heating power.
7. The water temperature reading was observed and it should increase when the water
starts to increase.
8. Water is heated up to boiling point untilled the pressure has reached 1.02 to 1.10 bar.
Valve V1 is opened immediately and followed y valve V5 for 1 minute in order for
vacuum out air inside the condenser.
9. The system let to be stabilized. Then all the relevant measurements for experimental
purposes is recorded and adjusted if required.

Experiment 1: Demonstration of Filmwise and Dropwise Condensation

1. The basic procedure that has been written in Section 6.1 was followed. The equipment
was making sure to be connected to the service unit.

Experiment 2: The Filmwise Heat Flux and Surface Heat Transfer Coefficient
Determination at Constant Pressure
1. the experiment with minimum value of 0.1LPM.
2. The heater power is adjusted in order to obtain the desired pressure at 1.01 bars.
3. When the condition has been stabilized, the steam (Tsat) and surface temperature (Tsurf),
Tin (T1) and Tout (T2) also flow rate is recorded.

Experiment 3: The Dropwise Heat Flux and Surface Heat Transfer Coefficient
Determination At Constant Constant Pressure
1. Cooling water is circulated through the dropwise condenser starting the experiment with
minimum value of 0.4LPM.
2. The heater power is adjusted in order to obtain desired pressure at 1.01 bar.
3. When the condition has been stabilized, the steam (Tsat) and surface temperature (Tsurf),
Tin (T1) and Tout (T2) also flow rate is recorded.

Experiment 4: The Effect of Air inside Chamber

1. Cooling water is circulated through the filmwise condenser at the highest flow rate
until the pressure is reduced to below 1 bar.
2. The discharged valve is opened to let air to enter the chamber.
(Increase of 0.01% bar indicates 1% air is injected).
3. The water flow rate to the condenser is regulated starting with a minimum value of
4. The heater power is adjusted to obtain the desired pressure at 1.01 bar.
5. When the condition has been stabilized, the steam (Tsat) and surface temperature
(Tsurf), Tin (T1) and Tout (T2) also flow rate is recorded.
6. Step 1-6 is repeated for dropwise condensation.

General Shutdown Procedure

7. The voltage control knob is turned to 0 volt position by turning it fully anti-clockwise.
8. Cooling water is allowed to flow for at least 5 minutes through the condensers to cool
them down.
9. The main switch and power system is switch off then the power cable is unplug.
10. The water supply is closed and cooling water connection is disconnected if necessary.
11. The water inside the chamber is discharged using discharge valve.