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Open Access Nano Express

Round-robin test on thermal conductivity measurement of ZnO nanofluids and comparison of experimental results with theoretical bounds

Wook-Hyun Lee1, Chang-Kyu Rhee2, Junemo Koo3, Jaekeun Lee4, Seok Pil Jang5, Stephen US Choi6*, Ki-Woong Lee1, Hwa-Young Bae1, Gyoung-Ja Lee2, Chang-Kyu Kim2, Sung Wook Hong3, Younghwan Kwon4, Doohyun Kim4, Soo Hyung Kim4, Kyo Sik Hwang5, Hyun Jin Kim5, Hyo Jun Ha5, Seung-Hyun Lee5, Chul Jin Choi6 and Ji-Hwan Lee6

Author Affiliations

1 Energy Efficiency and Materials Convergence Research Division, Korea Institute of Energy Research, Daejeon, Republic of Korea

2 Nuclear Materials Research Division, Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute, Daejeon, Republic of Korea

3 Department of Mechanical Engineering, Kyung Hee University, Yongin, Republic of Korea

4 Department of Mechanical Engineering, Pusan National University, Busan, Republic of Korea

5 School of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering, Korea Aerospace University, Republic of Korea

6 Mechanical and Industrial Engineering Department, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA

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Nanoscale Research Letters 2011, 6:258  doi:10.1186/1556-276X-6-258

Published: 25 March 2011


Ethylene glycol (EG)-based zinc oxide (ZnO) nanofluids containing no surfactant have been manufactured by one-step pulsed wire evaporation (PWE) method. Round-robin tests on thermal conductivity measurements of three samples of EG-based ZnO nanofluids have been conducted by five participating labs, four using accurate measurement apparatuses developed in house and one using a commercial device. The results have been compared with several theoretical bounds on the effective thermal conductivity of heterogeneous systems. This study convincingly demonstrates that the large enhancements in the thermal conductivities of EG-based ZnO nanofluids tested are beyond the lower and upper bounds calculated using the models of the Maxwell and Nan et al. with and without the interfacial thermal resistance.