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Analysis of mass transfer and phase change phenomena in moist air environments: frosting,defrosting and supersaturated stream mixing

Total activity: 1
Type of activity
Competitive project
Funding entity
Funding entity code
142.740,00 €
Start date
End date
CFD&HT, CRM-LES, desescarche, escarcha, humedad, niebla, vapor
The main objective of this project is the thermal and fluid-dynamic analysis of phenomena in
moist air environments: convective and diffusive transport in laminar and turbulent flows, stream
mixing with supersaturation effects (fog), frost formation over cold surfaces, defrosting.
The proposed methodology is based on a combination of the most advanced numerical tools for
the thermal and fluid-dynamic analysis (CFD&HT) and a detailed experimental analysis to
determine empirical coefficients that are mandatory in order to extend the capabilities and utility
of the numerical tools. This empirism is a key factor in situations where the computational effort is
boundless or where the involved phenomena imply certain parametrization (e.g. frost grain
size/type, surface contact angle/adherence).
Referring to simulation tools, the work will be centred on the integration of the LES models
developed by the Research Group (spectro-consistent discretization, regularization models) with
phenomenological aspects in scientific-technical interest around the management, generation
and destruction of water vapor (moisture). With management we conceive the mixing and
homogeneizing processes of air streams at different conditions, where is very important a correct
description of the convective and diffusive water vapor transport. By generation we talk about the
evaporation processes from wet/frosted surfaces (defrosting) or products with water content
(vegetables, meat, etc.), which will imply a redefinition of adequate boundary conditions. In
relation to frost formation or condensation phenomena the boundary conditions will be redefined
through moving boundaries or the models should be modified to consider the fraction of
water/frost contained in each control volume. The obtained numerical tool will be strategic for the
combined analysis of such type of phenomena, being them critical in a great variety of future
The experimental plan is to complement the simulations with the necessary empirical information,
and to compare/validate the implemented mathematical models where no other benchmark cases
are available. The concept is to develop fundamental experiments, centred on simple geometries
which allow for a clear characterization of the empirical parameter or the phenomena to be
validated. The intention is to generate a systematic approach for future changes in geometry or
conditions (e.g. other surfaces in frost formation).
The proposed project is well within the basic research line of the Research Group: ‘Numerical
simulation and experimental validation of heat and mass transfer phenomena. Application to the
design of thermal systems and equipment’ (UPC research line 33220405).
Adm. Estat
Plan Nacional de Investigación Científica, Desarrollo e Innovación Tecnológica 2008-2011
Call year
Funcding program
Proyectos de Investigación Fundamental
Funding subprogram
Proyectos de investigación fundamental no orientada
Funding call
Proyectos de investigación fundamental no orientada. Àrea de Energías convencionales alternativas
Grant institution
Gobierno De España. Ministerio De Economía Y Competitividad, Mineco


Scientific and technological production

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