EXTENDED ABSTRACT: MOLECULAR DYNAMICS STUDY OF THE THERMAL CONDUCTIVITY OF A HEXAGONAL BORON NITRIDE-WATER NANOFLUID
Nanofluids are a recently-developed class of fluids whose enhanced thermal properties make them promising for many engineering applications. The rational design of nanofluids is made more difficult though by continuing controversy about the physical mechanisms underlying the observed enhancement. This may be resolved by the use of molecular dynamics simulations to directly examine the intermolecular interactions leading to the relevant mechanisms. This study specifically investigates the prediction of thermal conductivity of water based nanofluids containing hexagonal boron nitride (hBN) nanoparticles, with the eventual goal of finding the optimal nanoparticle volume fraction for hBN nanofluids. Experimental values of the thermal conductivity are compared with values estimated by non-equilibrium molecular dynamics (NEMD) methods. The contributions of various heat transfer mechanisms, including Brownian motion of the nanoparticles and nanolayering effects, are also evaluated to identify their relative importance. This study may be the first molecular dynamics study to investigate the thermal properties of water-multilayer hBN nanofluid models in the literature.