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Web Based Instructional Tools For Heat And Mass Transfer

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2003 Annual Conference


Nashville, Tennessee

Publication Date

June 22, 2003

Start Date

June 22, 2003

End Date

June 25, 2003



Conference Session

Learning Enhancements for CHE Courses

Page Count


Page Numbers

8.1294.1 - 8.1294.14



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Paper Authors

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Haishan Zheng

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Jason Keith

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

Session 3213

Web-Based Instructional Tools for Heat and Mass Transfer

Haishan Zheng and Jason M. Keith Department of Chemical Engineering Michigan Technological University Houghton, MI 49931


This paper demonstrates four web-based instructional tools for heat and mass transfer based on JAVA applets. These tools are closely related to topics in two chemical engineering courses: transport phenomena and chemical reactor design. They simulate four classic problems which are one dimensional unsteady mass diffusion, one dimensional unsteady-state heat conduction in slabs, cylinders and spheres, Heisler charts for unsteady state heat transfer, and reaction and diffusion in porous catalytic substrates. They provide students with a dynamic observation of heat and mass transfer process unavailable in traditional textbooks. Educators and instructors can use these tools to enhance students understanding of the concepts of heat and mass transfer.


As many efforts are being applied to the introduction of the World Wide Web (WWW) in the chemical engineering curriculum, WWW shows a growing significance in the engineering classroom, especially with the advent of web-based instructional tools. These web-based instructional tools are JAVA applet programs that are run by the JAVA Virtual Machine that is integrated in the web browser. However, web-based instructional tools for fundamental chemical engineering courses such as heat and mass transport are seldom found online.

Since the Java language and Virtual Machine have sufficient mathematical capability for mathematical simulations of mass and heat transfer, it is reasonable to develop web-based instructional tools to simulate classic problems from these fields. With the aid of these web-based instructional tools, students can capture the basic principles of these transport processes by observing dynamic phenomena that are often difficult to explain in textbooks. Observing these processes gives students valuable insight into heat and mass transfer concepts. Furthermore, the interactive nature of these web-based instructional tools may improve the motivation of students, which could be a significant factor in achieving student success.

This paper will describe four JAVA applets developed for simulation of basic heat and Proceedings of the 2003 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2003, American Society for Engineering Education

Zheng, H., & Keith, J. (2003, June), Web Based Instructional Tools For Heat And Mass Transfer Paper presented at 2003 Annual Conference, Nashville, Tennessee. 10.18260/1-2--12458

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