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Design, Bulid, Test Project In Thermal Design

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1998 Annual Conference


Seattle, Washington

Publication Date

June 28, 1998

Start Date

June 28, 1998

End Date

July 1, 1998



Page Count


Page Numbers

3.191.1 - 3.191.8



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Paper Authors

author page

Don L. Dekker

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 2225

Design, Build, Test Project in Thermal Design

Don L. Dekker Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology


Thermal Design is currently a required course for all senior mechanical engineering students. The course content includes heat exchangers, piping, pumps, fans, and non-steady flow. A project, the design of a heat exchanger, provides the focus of the course. The heat exchanger design has evolved over several years into the design of a heat exchanger to preheat the cold water entering an industrial facility.

During the first four weeks of the quarter, student groups of 3 to 5 students design a heat exchanger After their design is completed, the students buy materials for the heat exchanger construction. Then they pass their design and the materials to another group which builds the heat exchanger. The heat exchanger is then passed to a third group which tests the heat exchanger according to the testing instructions that the design group specified. The design group then compares the experimental performance with the expected performance, redesigns the prototype and submits a final report. The different parts of the heat exchanger design process are discussed in more detail in the rest of this paper.

This in-class project provides the students with experience in working in groups or teams, defining the design, designing, constructing a low-cost prototype, testing a prototype, and redesigning the "real" heat exchanger which would be used in the plant. This simulates the entire product realization process during a ten week quarter. It would be impossible to experience the entire product realization process in industry in only ten weeks. This is an example of university design projects providing an experience that industry cannot.

Presented at the ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition June 28 - July 1, 1998 Seattle, Washington

Dekker, D. L. (1998, June), Design, Bulid, Test Project In Thermal Design Paper presented at 1998 Annual Conference, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/1-2--7021

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