Investigating The Aggregation Effect in Nanofluids by Molecular Dynamics

Open Access
Chen, You-han
Graduate Program:
Chemical Engineering
Master of Science
Document Type:
Master Thesis
Date of Defense:
September 17, 2013
Committee Members:
  • Themis Matsoukas, Thesis Advisor
  • Janna Kay Maranas, Thesis Advisor
  • M Ichael Janik, Thesis Advisor
  • Nanofluids
  • Molecular Dynamics
  • Thermal Conductivity
Nanofluids have been proposed to have superior heat transfer ability than typical coolant, but the mechanisms of thermal conductivity enhancement still remain obsecure. This study, by using Molecular Dynamics simulation, specifically investigate the aggregation effect in nanofluids system. Non-Equilibrium Molecular Dynamics (NEMD) method is used to calculate the thermal conductivity of nanofluids system containing aggregated nanoparticles. The clustering phenomena is characterized and a simple model is proposed to explain the results qualitatively. Also the thermal properties of several nanofluids system consist of different shapes of aggregation are examined. A resistance-analogy model is found to explain the thermal transfer behavior between two limiting conditions.