Design and Analysis Capabilities
Integrated design and analysis
Mezzo uses an integrated, iterative design and analysis process to ensure that all heat exchangers meet and exceed customer expectations.
Mezzo uses extensive in-house knowledge to design innovative microtube heat exchangers. Every new design starts with a concept for the unit’s space claim, mechanical interfaces, structural design, and manifold design -- each of which is refined to produce a final Computer Aided Design (CAD) file.
CFD streamline plots give Mezzo’s designers insight into manifold flow paths and the resulting temperature distribution.
Once the conceptual design is complete, a Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) analysis is often performed to optimize the heat exchanger’s manifold design. An analysis like this provides insight into the expected flow distribution throughout the microtube core, which can affect overall heat transfer as well as pressure drops.
If the CFD analysis suggests that there is some performance loss due to poor flow distribution, appropriate adjustments are made to the manifold design and the CFD analysis is rerun to verify the effectiveness of the changes.
Mezzo's proprietary thermal performance modelling software is able to generate and process massive sets of performance data for many different heat exchanger designs simultaneously. This allows Mezzo to quickly simulate entire thermal systems, optimize heat exchanger designs, or look at details such as temperature gradients, metal temperatures, or heat transfer in discrete parts of the core.
If resulting temperature gradients in the unit are very large and are identified as a structural issue, Mezzo’s proprietary software can be used to generate a temperature field for the unit, which can then be used in further Finite Element Analysis (FEA).
Using a combination of proprietary thermal prediction software and Finite Element Analysis (FEA), Mezzo is able to predict metal temperatures throughout their designs.
Mezzo uses structural FEA to refine the structural design and verify that it meets the customer’s design goals. Depending on the requirements for a given project, Mezzo may conduct their FEA before or after performing a thermal and/or CFD analysis. Structural FEA can help to improve mechanical features or guide final material selection, ensuring that both stress and deflection are acceptable.
RESEARCH & DEVELOPMENT
JOINING TECHNOLOGY DEVELOPMENT
One of the most challenging manufacturing problems associated with microtube heat exchangers is the joining of microtubes to manifolds. Adhesive joints are typically used in low temperature applications, such as automotive radiators and intercoolers. High temperature applications often require a metal joint, either brazed or welded. Mezzo's research and development team has been working since 2005 to develop these methods, and continually works to discover the ultimate tube joining solutions.
Because microtube heat exchangers often have 10's of thousands of tube joints, Mezzo's methods for tube joining must be more than 99.99+% effective. Whether an adhesive joint or a metal joint is required, Mezzo carries out comprehensive tensile testing to help characterize the load-bearing and sealing capabilities of each joining method. To aid in this effort, Mezzo is also able to perform tensile tests at elevated temperatures to better understand how joints will behave in real world applications.
WIND TUNNEL TESTING AND CORRELATIONS DEVELOPMENT
Mezzo's in-house performance models rely on empirical convection and flow friction correlations. Because no other company uses tubes in the same way, Mezzo has had to develop its own correlations to fully understand the heat transfer and frictional characteristics of flows over our tube cores.
Through extensive and continuous wind tunnel testing of new tube patterns and validation of established tube patterns, Mezzo is able to precisely create new designs which meet and exceed customer's performance targets.