Computational Heat Transfer in Complex Systems: A Review of Needs and Opportunities

Jayathi Y. Murthy, Birck Nanotechnology Center, Purdue University
Sanjay R. Mathur, Purdue University

Date of this Version



J. Heat Transfer 134(3), 031016 (Jan 18, 2012) (12 pages)


During the few decades, computational techniques for simulating heat transfer in complex industrial systems have reached maturity. Combined with increasingly sophisticated modeling of turbulence, chemistry, radiation, phase change, and other physics, powerful computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and computational heat transfer (CHT) solvers have been developed which are beginning to enter the industrial design cycle. In this paper, an overview of emerging simulation needs is first given, and currently-available CFD techniques are evaluated in light of these needs. Emerging computational methods which address some of the failings of current techniques are then reviewed. New research opportunities for computational heat transfer, such as in submicron and multiscale heat transport, are reviewed. As computational techniques and physical models become mature, there is increasing demand for predictive simulation, that is, simulation which is not only verified and validated, but whose uncertainty is also quantified. Current work in the area of sensitivity computation and uncertainty propagation is described. [DOI: 10.1115/1.4005153]


Nanoscience and Nanotechnology