Titanium dioxideTiO2 Nanoparticle /Nanopowder CAS Number : 13463-67-7
The idea of mixing metallic particles to a fluid in order to create solid-liquid suspensions as enhanced thermal fluids goes back to Maxwell, who in 1873 observed that solids have a much higher thermal conductivity than fluids. Millimeter or micro-sized particles tend however to settle very rapidly, causing clogging and abrasion. The bloom of nanotechnology gave finally new life and meaning to the idea, with the studies of Choi who in 1995 named these innovative thermal fluids as ‘nanofluids’. The research on nanofluids is still in its experimental phase, often producing discordants results in the different labs involved. This is due to a series of factors, such as the ability to create stable nanofluids, avoiding aggregation and deposition effects of nanoparticles in the suspensions, for example using s dispersants. Moreover, the addition of nanoparticles to a thermal fluid increases its viscosity, thus increasing potential pressure drop, and requires a higher pumping force to ensure the proper fluid circulation in the hydraulic circuits of the equipments. The properties of nanofluids are then strictly related to the type of nanoparticles employed, its size, shape and the concentrations, not even forgetting the effects of other variables such as temperature, pressure and magnetic fields applied. The theoretical understanding of the mechanisms that define the changes of thermal-physical properties and of thermal-fluid-dynamic behaviour of nanofluids are also not very-well known yet.
Nanofluids are a very interesting field of study in the improving of efficiency in cooling and heat transfer applications, with a variety of R&D projects actually focused on them. Nanofluids are colloidal suspensions of nanoparticles in a traditional thermal transfer fluid, such as water, glycol or oil, offering augmented conductivity and higher thermal transfer rate. Nanomaterials bring indeed improved and orginal mechanical, thermal, electrical, magnetic and optical properties.