There is probably no better feeling than standing in front of a fan or an air-conditioner after getting back home on a hot summer’s day. Have you ever wondered why? As a cold arctic front blasts through your home town and temperatures drop from summer-like to near freezing in a matter of hours, what is the mechanism behind such a sudden change? In both examples, the underlying physical process is forced convection, where heat (or cold) is transferred by the motion of the fluid generated by external means, such as an air-conditioner’s fan or blower, or atmospheric pressure differences forcing movements of mesoscale air masses.
In this lesson, we will go over some fundamentals of forced convection.
Here are the accompanying handout slides for this lesson.