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An Experimental Determination of Temperature-Dependent Thermal Conductivity of Cyclohexane-Based Nanofluids

L. Fan, J.M. Khodadadi
Auburn University, US

Keywords: nanofluids, thermal conductivity, transient plane source technique


In extending their applicability, utilization of nanofluids as superior solid-liquid phase change materials (PCM) for thermal energy storage has been proposed recently. This extension of potential utility of nanofluids will require thermal conductivity measurements and modeling for nanofluids with base liquids other than water and ethylene glycol. In the intermediate temperature range, hydrocarbons are usually chosen as PCM for thermal energy storage. As an example, cyclohexane was the selected base liquid in the present study. Copper oxide (CuO) nanoparticles modified by oleic acid were synthesized and dispersed in cyclohexane to form ink-like nanofluid samples. Temperature-dependent thermal conductivity of these samples was measured experimentally by using the transient plane source technique. The temperature was varied from 10 to 50 °C with an increment of 10 °C. It was shown that thermal conductivity of cyclohexane-based nanofluids decreases almost linearly with increasing temperature, consistent with the trend for pure cyclohexane. At constant temperatures, thermal conductivity enhancement became more pronounced as the concentration was increased. Furthermore, the enhancement was observed to be more significant at higher temperatures.
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