Comparative study of heat transfer and friction characteristics of water-based Alumina–copper and Alumina–CNT hybrid nanofluids in laminar flow through pipes

  • M. Shahul Hameed
  • S. SureshEmail author
  • Rajive Kumar Singh


In this experimental work, a comparative study of convective heat transfer and drop in pressure characteristics of Alumina–Cu/water and Alumina–CNT/water hybrid nanofluids in fully developed laminar flow in a uniformly heated tube with circular cross section is presented. For this, Alumina–Cu hybrid nanoparticles (90:10 proportion was taken. Below this proportion for, e.g., 80:20, the nanofluid was not stable. Coagulation was happening) were prepared by using a hydrogen reduction technique. Characterization was done for the prepared powder through XRD and scanning electron microscope (SEM) to validate the chemical constitution, to establish the size of the particle and to investigate the morphology of surface. The synthesized Alumina–Cu hybrid nanopowder is dispersed in deionized water in an ultrasonic bath to form a well-dispersed 0.1% volume concentration of hybrid nanofluid. Carbon nanotube (CNT) functionalization was done by acid treatment method to convert the CNT surface from hydrophobic to hydrophilic. Scanning electron microscope was used for characterization of the aluminum oxide particles and functionalized multi-walled carbon nanotubes. To prepare 0.1% volume fraction of Alumina–CNT/water nanofluid, required quantities of Alumina powder and functionalized CNT were dispersed in deionized water in 90:10 proportion. Experiments were conducted in the laminar flow range with water, Alumina/water and hybrid nanofluids, and the results obtained have been compared. The convective heat transfer experimental results showed greater enhancement with Alumina–CNT/water hybrid fluid compared to Alumina–Cu/water hybrid fluid. The maximum enhancements of 30.65% and 20.48% in Nusselt number have been obtained for 0.3% volume fraction of Alumina–CNT/water hybrid nanofluid and Alumina–Cu/water hybrid nanofluid, respectively, at Reynolds number of 1350 as compared to the Nusselt number of water.


Laminar flow Improvement in heat transfer Friction factor 



Rate of mass flow


Area (m2)


Specific heat (J/kg K)


Diameter of test section (m)


Friction factor


Heat transfer coefficient (W m−2 K−1)


Thermal conductivity (W m−1K−1)


Length of test section (m)


Nusselt number (hD/k)


Prandtl number (μcp/k)


Heat flux (W m−2)


Reynolds number (4m/πdμ)


Surface area (m2)


Temperature (°C)


Velocity of fluid (m s−1)


Axial distance from the tube entrance (m)

Greek symbols


Drop in pressure (Pa)


Dynamic viscosity (kg m−2 s−1)


Density (kg m−3)


Volume concentration (%)















Solid phase




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Copyright information

© Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest, Hungary 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Shahul Hameed
    • 1
  • S. Suresh
    • 1
    Email author
  • Rajive Kumar Singh
    • 1
  1. 1.Mechanical Engineering DepartmentNational Institute of TechnologyTiruchirappalliIndia

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