We present results of molecular dynamics calculations of the effective thermal conductivity of nanofluids containing self-propelled nanoparticles. The translational and rotational dynamics observed in the simulations follow the behavior expected from the standard theoretical analysis of Brownian and self-propelled nanoparticles. The superposition of self-propulsion and rotational Brownian motion causes the behavior of the self-propelled nanoparticles to resemble Brownian diffusion with an effective diffusivity that is larger than the standard Brownian value by a factor of several thousand. As a result of the enhanced diffusion (and the convective mixing resulting from the motion), we observe a discriminable increase of the effective thermal conductivity of the solution containing self-propelled nanoparticles. While the increases we observe are in the range of several percent, they are significant considering that, without propulsion, the nanofluid thermal conductivity is essentially not affected by the Brownian motion and can be understood within the effective medium theory of thermal conduction. Our results constitute a proof of concept that self-propelled particles have the potential to enhance thermal conductivity of the liquid in which they are immersed, an idea that could ultimately be implemented in a broad variety of cooling applications.
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Research Article| May 06 2021
Thermal transport dynamics in active heat transfer fluids (AHTF)
Anirban Chandra ;
Pawel Keblinski ;
Wei Peng, Anirban Chandra, Pawel Keblinski, Jeffrey L. Moran; Thermal transport dynamics in active heat transfer fluids (AHTF). J. Appl. Phys. 7 May 2021; 129 (17): 174702. https://doi.org/10.1063/5.0047283
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