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In order to improve performance, manufacturers of household refrigerators are constantly updating the design of natural-draft wire-on-tube condensers. As a consequence, the geometrical application range of the current correlations became outdated. In this context, the aim of this work was to extend the limits of the existing mathematical models by proposing a new and updated correlation to predict the air-side heat transfer coefficient. To this end, a test bench was designed and built to circulate hot brine through the condenser tubes, controlling the inlet temperature and the mass flow rate. Fiftyfour condenser samples with distinct design parameters, such as height, tube and wire diameters and pitches were manufactured and tested. The experimental results showed that the condenser height, and the wire and tube pitches had the strongest impact on the heat transfer rate. Finally, a semi-empirical correlation was put forward, where 90% of the experimental data were predicted within a ±10% error band.
Keywords: Wire-on-tube Condenser, Household Refrigeration, Semi-empirical Correlation
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