Experimental validation of a boundary layer convective heat flux measurement technique

K. S. Kulkarni, U. Madanan, T. W. Simon, R. J. Goldstein

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2 Scopus citations


If a steady thermal boundary layer is sufficiently thick, wall heat fluxes and associated convective heat transfer coefficients can be directly calculated from measured temperature distributions taken within it using a traversing thermocouple probe. The boundary layer can be laminar, turbulent, or transitional and on a surface of arbitrary surface temperature distribution and geometry. Herein, this technique is presented and validated in a steady, turbulent, two-dimensional boundary layer on a flat, uniform-heat-flux wall. Care is taken to properly account for radiation from the wall and conduction within the thermocouple wire. In the same setting, heat flux measurements are made for verification purposes using an energy balance on a segment of the test wall carefully designed to minimize and include radiation and conduction effects. Heat flux values measured by the boundary layer measurement technique and by the energy balance measurement agree to within 4.4% and the difference between the two lie completely within their respective measurement uncertainties of 5.74% and 0.6%.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number074501
JournalJournal of Heat Transfer
Issue number7
StatePublished - 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
Copyright © 2018 by ASME.


  • Boundary layer
  • Heat flux
  • Heat transfer coefficient
  • Temperature measurement
  • Temperature profile
  • Thermocouple


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