Case 13427

Nanoparticle Thin-Film Coatings for Enhancements of the Boiling Heat Transfer


Nucleate boiling, heat transfer coefficient, critical heat flux, wettability improvement, layer-by-layer coating


    The invention can be used to improve the power density of heat transfer for systems such as electronic devices, chemical reactors, refrigeration systems, boilers, etc.


    Heat transfer process in electronic devices and other systems is inefficient due to low critical heat flux and low heat-transfer coefficient.


A wettability improvement at a surface is thought to be responsible for a critical heat flux (CHF) enhancement, while changes in surface roughness are thought to be responsible for changes in the heat-transfer coefficient. The invention uses nanoparticle-based thin-film coatings on engineering surfaces to increase the boiling heat transfer coefficient and the boiling CHF. Using layer-by-layer assembly method, a superhydrophilic thin film is formed on the metal surface of a boiler vessel to alter the wettability and roughness of the surface, which in turn, changes the boiling behavior at the surface.

  • Increases heat-transfer coefficient and CHF
  • Maintains the operating heat flux below CHF
  • Higher power density and hence increases economic benefits

  • Professor Michael F. Rubner (Department of Materials Science and Engineering, MIT)
  • Professor Robert E. Cohen (Department of Chemical Engineering, MIT)
  • Professor Jacopo Buongiorno (Department of Nuclear Science and Engineering, MIT)
  • Lin-wen Hu (Nuclear Reactor Lab, MIT)
  • Eric Forrest (Department of Materials Science and Engineering, MIT)
  • Erik H. Williamson (Department of Materials Science and Engineering, MIT)

Intellectual Property:

US Patent Application Number 12/703228, filed February 10, 2010



Last revised:January 18, 2013

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