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A New Correlation for Conjugate Nusselt Number Applied to Cooling of Apples

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  2007 ASAE Annual Meeting  076055.(doi:10.13031/2013.23309)
Authors:   Marcio Arêdes Martins, Leandro Soares de Oliveira
Keywords:   Cooling of fruits, conjugate problem, unstructured finite-volume, triangular mesh

The convective cooling of apples in tandem arrangement on storage trays was numerically studied using the finite volume method on unstructured triangular meshes. The method was employed to solve the system of coupled equations of heat transfer and incompressible fluid flow. The computational code was first verified by solving a steady-state conjugate heat transfer on two heated blocks. Both local and global Nusselt numbers are reported in the literature for such problem. The local Nusselt numbers were calculated for a given solid-fluid thermal conductivity ratio and good agreement to data reported in literature was verified. The numerical simulation was employed for the solution of the conjugate heat transfer problem of the air cooling of two apples. The local Nusselt number was evaluated for each apple during a cooling time of one hour. A correlation for global conjugated Nusselt number was obtained as a function of Reynolds and Prandtl numbers. The conjugate approach has demonstrated to be a powerful tool for the optimization of the heat transfer coefficient correlations available in the literature and for the design of improved storage units.

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