The technical status of boiling-liquid metal heat transfer (as of about 1973) is summarized and evaluated in this book written primarily for researchers, design engineers, and graduate students in nuclear, chemical, and mechanical engineering. The author has reviewed the extensive world literature and has referred to the numerous significant papers and reports on original research, most of which originated in the United States and the U.S.S.R.
A relatively new engineering science, boiling heat transfer with liquid metals is, in many respects, appreciably different from that with ordinary liquids. Present knowledge was generated largely in the 1960s, but boiling liquid-metal heat transfer is still very much a developing field.
Much of the information in the book—primarily calculated and experimental results, as well as many illustrative examples—is based on sodium, because of its use as a nuclear-power-reactor coolant. However, considerable information on mercury, potassium, rubidium, and cesium is also given. The theoretical aspects of boiling, which are the same for all liquid metals, are liberally presented for all major topics. This information is helpful in assessing the validity of experimental results, in providing comparisons between such results and theoretical predictions, and in arriving at predictions under conditions for which experimental results are lacking.