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An experimental and numerical investigation of natural convection melting

Scanlon, T.J. and Stickland, M.T. (2001) An experimental and numerical investigation of natural convection melting. International Communications in Heat and Mass Transfer, 28 (2). pp. 181-190. ISSN 0735-1933

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The melting of a vertical ice cylinder in water is investigated in this paper. The experiments were carried out in a water-filled cylindrical Perspex barrel with adiabatic walls for Rayleigh numbers of 0.22x108 and 0.475x108. The ice crystal is suspended in the water and experimental images of the natural convection melting process were obtained using both shadowgraphy and particle image velocimetry (PIV) techniques. This data is compared with a numerical model which attempts to capture the melt-front on a fixed computational grid. The numerical model takes into account the density inversion effects in the water. The results show the applicability of PIV to this type of flow and demonstrate a simple numerical model to effectively resolve the melting phenomenon.