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International Heat Transfer Conference 10

ISSN: 2377-424X (online)
ISSN: 2377-4371 (flashdrive)

THE IMPORTANCE OF CORNER HEADER DISTRIBUTOR DESIGNS IN PLATE HEAT EXCHANGERS

H. Kumar
APV Baker Therm Division, Goldsboro, NC, USA

M.F. Edwards
Unilever Research, Port Sunlight Laboratory, Merseyside, UK

P.R. Davison
Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Bradford, UK

D. O. Jackson
Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Bradford, UK

Peter J. Heggs
School of Chemical and Process Engineering, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK; Dept of Chem Eng, UMIST, Sackville St., Manchester, M60 1QD

DOI: 10.1615/IHTC10.410
pages 81-86

Abstract

The plates that are assembled to form a plate heat exchanger are essentially rectangular and fluid enters and leaves the channel formed between two plates via ports in the corner of the plates. The two ports may be in line or opposed depending upon the type of plate. The fluid on inlet must be distributed from the port by corner headers over the width of the plate. This leads to some variation in fluid velocity across the width and subsequently causes variations in the heat transfer and pressure loss profile across the plate width. This discourse outlines industrial relevant research carried out in co-operation with a leading plate exchanger manufacturer into the effects of the header distributor design. An electrochemical mass transfer technique has been employed to provide details of the flow variation for various distributor designs. Results show that the distribution areas must be carefully designed to avoid considerable penalties in heat transfer and pressure drop.

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