An analysis is made of the interactive heat transfer problem involving forced convection flow in a vertical pipe and natural convection boundary layer flow external to the pipe. Both flows are laminar. Solutions of the conservation equations for mass, momentum, and energy were obtained numerically by an iterative scheme which deals successively with the internal and external flows. Remarkably rapid convergence was achieved by adopting a procedure whereby information is transferred between the two flows via heat transfer coefficients rather than via the wall or bulk temperatures or the heat flux. Results are presented for the axial distributions of the internal and external Nusselt numbers, of the wall temperature, and of the bulk temperature of the internal flow—all as a function of three parameters. It was found that at any (dimensionless) axial station, the pipe Nusselt number is insensitive to the parameters and is bounded between the values for uniform wall temperature and uniform wall heat flux. On the other hand, the external natural convection Nusselt number is highly sensitive to the parameters and departs substantially from the standard uniform wall temperature results.

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