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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/T012242/1
Title: Hex-PORTMAN: Heat Flux Splitting in Porous Materials for Thermal Management
Principal Investigator: MAHMOUDI LARIMI, Dr Y
Other Investigators:
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
B9 Energy Ltd BL Refrigeration & Air Conditioning Ltd Glen Dimplex Group (UK)
University of Bristol University of California Riverside University of Queensland
Department: Sch Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
Organisation: Queen's University of Belfast
Scheme: New Investigator Award
Starts: 01 January 2020 Ends: 31 December 2021 Value (£): 203,265
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Aerodynamics
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Aerospace, Defence and Marine
Related Grants:
Panel History:
Panel DatePanel NameOutcome
08 Oct 2019 Engineering Prioritisation Panel Meeting 8 and 9 October 2019 Announced
Summary on Grant Application Form
Thermal management plays a vital role in determining the efficiency, safety and reliability of technological development in a plethora of industries including aerospace, automotive, computing and renewable energy sectors. The developments in these industries have culminated in a considerable surge in the power densities, which goes hand-in-hand with the increase of generated heat flux and subsequent undesirable temperature rise in system components. Porous materials (i.e. solids, which are permeated by a network of pores) have been demonstrated to be competitive microfluidic materials for effective cooling in high heat flux applications because of their fluid permeability and high surface area, which augments the heat transfer from hot surfaces to the cooling fluid passing through the porous media.

Past studies have theoretically investigated the flow and thermal characteristics of the porous media systems for thermal management using the volume-averaged approach, which is a popular low-cost engineering approach for studying transport in porous media. However, after more than a decade of research, this problem has still not been resolved. This is primarily because the splitting mechanism of the external heat flux between the solid and fluid phases in the porous media is unknown and determination of the thermal boundary condition for volume-averaged solvers remains a scientific challenge. This ambitious project will, for the first time, address this fundamental problem of flow and heat transfer in porous media systems through a comprehensive series of experimental and modelling studies.

This project will benefit from partnership with world-renowned scientists: Prof Kambiz Vafai (KV)-University of California Riverside, Dr Mahdi Azarpeyvand (MA)-University of Bristol and Prof Kamel Hooman (KH)-University of Queensland, with the involvement of one PDRA and four PhD students. KV is a world-leading scientist in the field of transport in porous media and will bring his key knowledge in understanding the heat flux splitting in the porous media. MA and KH will support the project for experimental measurements of the velocity field in the system. This project is also of direct relevance to industry with the involvement of UK-based companies (Glen Dimplex, B9 Energy, and BL Refrigeration) who will be deploying the fully validated volume-averaged solver developed in the project for the purpose of thermal management using porous materials in application to electronics cooling, energy storage and solar photovoltaic systems, respectively.

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Organisation Website: http://www.qub.ac.uk