We design heat exchangers using two topology optimization approaches: the density, i.e. volume fraction and level set methods. Our goal is to maximize the heat exchange between two fluids in separate channels while constraining the pressure drop across each channel. The heat exchanger is modeled with a coupled thermal-flow formulation. The flow is governed by an isothermal and incompressible Stokes-Brinkman equation and the heat transfer is governed by a convection-diffusion equation with high Peclet number. We solve one set of Stokes-Brinkman equations per fluid. Each Brinkman term in the flow equation serves to model the other phase as a solid, thereby preventing mixing. We first represent the solid and fluid phases using a volume fraction variable and apply a SIMP-like penalization in the Brinkman term to drive the optimization to a discrete design. The cost and constraint function derivatives are automatically calculated with the library pyadjoint and the optimization is performed by the Method of Moving Asymptotes. In a second optimization formulation, we use the level set approach to define the interface that separates the two fluids. Pyadjoint calculates the shape derivatives of the cost and constraint functions and the Hamilton-Jacobi advects the interface, allowing for topological changes. We present results in two dimensions and discuss the advantages and disadvantages of each approach.

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Published on 11/03/21

Submitted on 11/03/21

Volume 1300 - Inverse Problems, Optimization and Design, 2021

DOI: 10.23967/wccm-eccomas.2020.345

Licence: CC BY-NC-SA license

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