The flow resistance characteristics of aviation kerosene RP-3 in horizontal helical tubes at the supercritical pressure under heating condition are investigated. Both pressure drop and friction factor were examined under uniform heat flux of 50kW/m2−300kW/m2, mass flux from 786kg/m2s to 1375kg/m2s, and helical diameter from 20mm to 40mm. The influence of viscous factors on the resistance is analyzed to explore flow characteristics in a helical tube and provide a reference for the design of heat exchangers.
Friction factor decreases with the increase of heat flux at low inlet temperatures 323K and 423K. It is explained that the viscosity changes more dramatically than the density. When the fluid inlet temperature is 523K and the fluid mean temperature Tb is close to pseudo-critical temperature, frictional flow resistance becomes significantly larger Tpc due to huge variations in thermal properties in the radical direction. The effect of centrifugal force makes the friction factor decline slowly. The friction factor goes up with the enlargement of mass flux when Tb>0.81Tpc. This phenomenon is caused by the larger radial velocity gradient under the large mass flux. Different helical diameters play the leading roles for the bending flow in the tubes.