Natural convection in water-saturated reticulated vitreous carbon foam

Jane H. Davidson, F. A. Kulacki, D. Savela

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16 Scopus citations


Experiments of the Horton-Rogers-Lapwood type are reported for water-saturated, 97% porous reticulated vitreous carbon foam. Heat transfer data have been obtained for layer aspect ratios of 2.5 and 5, porous medium Rayleigh numbers from 140 to 4700, and Darcy numbers from 5 × 10-5 to 37 × 10-5. The data are well correlated in the form Num = (0.007 ± 0.002) Ram0.504 ± 0.06 Prp0.41 ± 0.08 .Conduction through the solid phase plays a limited role, and the main heat transfer mechanism is advection. Correlation of the present data and water-saturated copper foam data [1] is achieved by inclusion of the conductivity ratio to give, Num = (0.008 ± 0.003) fenced(frac(km, kf)) 0.25 ± 0.04 Ram0.50 ± 0.02 Prp0.38 ± 0.04 .

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4479-4483
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer
Issue number19-20
StatePublished - Sep 2009

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The support of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, the University of Minnesota’s Initiative for Renewable Energy and the Environment, and the US Department of Energy is appreciated.

Copyright 2009 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • Carbon foam
  • Metal foam
  • Natural convection
  • Porous media


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