Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering



Pumping Liquid Metal at Extreme Temperatures (1400 degrees C)


Caleb Amy


Georgia Institute of Technology


Thursday, June 29, 2017 at 2:00:00 PM


MRDC Building, Room 3515


Courtney Aiken


Thermal energy is fundamental to most power generation and many industrial processes, and because of the entropy associated with it, is the most valuable at the highest temperature. To use this heat, it must be transported and molten metals are an ideal heat transfer media because they have can high temperature stability and high heat transfer coefficients. The ability to pump a fluid is key because it enables circulation and includes the thermal and chemical constraints seen by an entire system, with the added challenge of dynamic sealing, stress, and wear. In this presentation, I report the first successful demonstration of an all ceramic mechanical pump, that was used to continuously circulate liquid tin at ~ 1200-1400°C, in an all ceramic circulation loop. This first of a kind demonstration represents a major technological breakthrough, because it now enables heat transfer using a liquid, above 1000°C. This capability is enabling, because the notion of transferring, storing and converting heat at such extreme temperatures has been previously considered infeasible. This new ability represents a major step forward for the fields of heat transfer, energy, and chemical/materials processing and many new concepts are enabled by this approach.


Caleb is a Ph.D. student in Mechanical Engineering, advised by Dr. Asegun Henry, who researches ultra-high temperature liquid metal heat transfer, and related energy systems. He previously interned at Siemens Energy and Lockheed Martin, in addition to conducting undergraduate research in the area of biofuel characterization. He is also the President of the Energy Club at Georgia Tech and is past Chair of the ASME Southeast US student regional board.


Refreshments will be served.