Materials and Interface Challenges in High Vapor Quality Two-Phase Flow Boiling Research

Damena Agonafer, Mark S. Spector, Nenad Miljkovic

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


High vapor quality flow boiling on structured surfaces has potential to enhance heat transfer performance, and reduce temperature/pressure instability when compared to conventional lower quality flow boiling on smooth surfaces. In this article, we discuss recent research progress on structured surface enhanced flow boiling. We discuss lessons learned, and focus on challenges remaining. Although some degree of mechanistic understanding of the effect of surface structures on the flow boiling process has been gained, many important challenges remain to enabling real utilization. Primarily, a need exists for greater fundamental understanding of the processes if design tools are to be developed capable of guiding engineers to select and implement enhancements. The challenges discussed stem from a community-wide workshop focusing on high exit quality flow boiling, held in June 2020. Four key challenges were identified: (1) the need for better understanding of the mechanisms governing surface-structure-enhanced flow boiling and their effect on heat transfer coefficient, critical heat flux, pressure drop, and flow stability, (2) the need for rigorous quantification of surface durability and manufacturing scalability, (3) the need to understand effects of using working fluids other than water including refrigerants, supercritical fluids, and other dielectric fluids, and (4) the need to establish thermal resistance limits dependent on liquid film thickness. We end the article by providing conclusions detailing where we believe the community should direct both fundamental and applied efforts in order to solve the identified challenges, which limit implementation of high vapor quality flow boiling on surface structures.


  • Heat transfer
  • Heating systems
  • Liquids
  • Manufacturing
  • Oscillators
  • Surface morphology
  • Surface structures

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'Materials and Interface Challenges in High Vapor Quality Two-Phase Flow Boiling Research'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this