Innovative fin designs for enhancing the airside performance of fin-and-flat tube heat exchangers

Ali Sadeghianjahromi*, Mohammed W. Sulaiman, Uzair Sajjad, Chi Chuan Wang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Heat exchangers are extensively used in space heating, air conditioning, refrigeration, chemical and petrochemical plants, power stations, oil refineries, and sewage treatment. Novel designs that can surpass the most widely used louver fin geometry for air-cooling applications are presented. Innovative fin types, e.g., ring fins, circular disk fins, and hexagonal disk fins are numerically modeled and compared with a louver fin-and-flat tube heat exchanger in terms of thermal resistance in the same pumping power. Flow visualization was performed by particle image velocimetry method for hexagonal disk fins for qualitative validation. Results showed that although ring fins could force the airflow toward the flat tubes, they were not able to effectively reduce thermal resistance. Meanwhile, using four circular disk fins yielded a lower thermal resistance by up to 16%. The delta winglets could be added onto the circular disk fins for further augmentation. The hexagonal disk fins could also offer similar improvement like circular disk fins but include some unique features for easier fabrication and assembly with the maximum penalty of 4% increase in thermal resistance relative to the circular disk fins. The flow visualization by PIV method was carried out for inline hexagonal disk fins, which qualitatively confirmed the numerical simulations regarding the proposed novel fin patterns.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-32
Number of pages32
JournalJournal of Enhanced Heat Transfer
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2021


  • Disk fin
  • Heat transfer enhancement
  • Numerical simulation
  • PIV flow visualization
  • Vortex generators

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