The effect of heat conduction in the vapor on the dynamics of downflowing condensate

Igor L. Kliakhandler*, Stephen H. Davis, S. George Bankoff

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


A vapor fills the gap between two vertical plates, one hot and one cold. The temperatures are adjusted so that condensate forms on the cold wall. It is the dynamics of the system that is examined. The paper extends the one-sided model of evaporation-condensation to account the heat conduction in the vapor phase, which turns out to be important in many condensation problems. For the considered flow, both vapor recoil and Marangoni effect are stabilizing; as a result, the condensate becomes unstable at nonzero Reynolds numbers in contrast to the usual film flow down a vertical wall. A nonlinear evolution equation is derived and analyzed for the interaction of viscous shear and evaporation-condensation. It turns out that the one-sided model of heat and mass transfer gives a very good description of the initial stage of thin-film growth; in later stages, however, the heat conduction through the vapor becomes important when the film is sufficiently thick.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)150-157
Number of pages8
JournalPhysics of Fluids
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2002
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computational Mechanics
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Fluid Flow and Transfer Processes


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