Rate of heat transfer from finned metal surfaces

G. Fayette Taylor, A. Rehbock
Jan 1930

The object was to evaluate the factors which control the rate of heat transfer to a moving current of air from finned metal surfaces similar to those used on aircraft engine cylinders. The object was to establish data which will enable the finning of cooling surfaces to be designed to suit the particular needs of any specific application. Most of the work was done on flat copper specimens 6 inches square, upon which were mounted copper fins with spacings varying from 1/2 inch to 1/12 inch. All fins were 1 inch deep, 6 inches long, and .020 inch thick. The results of the investigation are given in the form of curves included here. In general, it was found that for specimens of this kind, the effectiveness of a given fin does not decrease very rapidly until its distance from adjacent fins has been reduced to 1/9 or 1/10 of an inch. A formula for the heat transfer from a flat surface without fins was developed, and an approximate formula for the finned specimens is suggested.

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