Design Considerations

Vipertex® enhanced surfaces, either in a tube or flat rolled configuration, can be used in a variety of applications. These engineered surfaces are rolled into coils of metal, promoting repeatability, volume production and cost efficiency.

Vipertex® makes it possible to incorporate enhanced surfaces into heat exchanger designs with greater flexibility and scalability, helping you optimize a solution for your project.

Operating Conditions

Heat exchangers using Vipertex® tubes and/or flat goods can be substantially more efficient than those produced with conventional materials. Various operating conditions need to be considered so that the appropriateness of Vipertex® can be determined and optional strategies can be considered before making final design decisions. An example of an optional strategy is the fact that the Vipertex® heat transfer efficiency curve is not linear. In the case of the Vipertex® 1EHT, the same heat transfer can be achieved at a much lower flow rate, which can inform optimization decisions about pumping power, size of the overall unit, footage and diameter of tubing required, etc. It may be helpful to read Evaluation of Heat Exchanger Designs Using Enhanced Heat Transfer Tubes, which was presented at the 2017 American Society of Thermal and Fluids Engineers (ASTFE) Conference and 4th International Workshop on Heat Transfer (IWHT).

The complexity of the real world installations uggests tha ta conversation take place early in the design process with the Vipertex® team to evaluate the applicability of Vipertex® tubing and flat sheets in a given design for a heat exchanger installation or manufactured product. More can be learned by reading Comoparison of Heat Exchanger Designs Using Vipertex® 1EHT Enhanced Heat Transfer Tubes, presented at the 22nd International Congress of Chemical and Process Engineering CHISA 2016 and the 19th Conference on Process Integration, Modeling and Optimisation for Energy Saving and Pollution Reduction PRES 2016.

HTRI® members can take advantage of a calculation tool that plugs into HTRI® Xchanger Suite software to help them optimize single phase flow installations using Vipertex® tubing.

Operating Condition Parameters

While an early conversation with the Vipertex® team is clearly the best route, the following topics are covered in order to provide a degree of insight into the potential for Vipertex® in the context of various operating condition parameters.


Pressure Level

Vipertex® tubes can be applied to exchangers operating at various pressure levels. Different alloy systems, wall thicknesses and processing specifications contribute to the achievement of various pressure ratings.

All Vipertex® tubes are welded. The highest operating pressures may require seamless tubes, which would eliminate Vipertex® tubing from consideration. That being said, burst and collapse tests of Vipertex® tubes confirm higher ratings than their smooth welded tube conterparts. It is apparent that the enhanced surface pattern serves to create a stronger, more rigid tube.

To begin a conversation with the Vipertex® team about your application, click here.

Phase Changes

Vipertex® tubes work extraordinarily well in single phase processes, but can also work very well under dual phase conditions. For more information, read Geometric Optimization for Thermal-hydraulic Performance of Dimpled Enhanced Tubes for Single Phase Flow, a paper published in Applied Thermal Engineering, detailing the results of Vipertex® 1EHT tubes.

Vipertex® is available in various surface texture options that may, based on other operating conditions, be more appropriate for particular functions, such as evaporators or condensers. More information can be obtained by reading Condensation and Evaporation Characteristics of Flows Inside Three Dimensional Vipertex® Enhanced Heat Transfer Tubes.

To begin a conversation with the Vipertex® team about your application, click here.

Flow Rate

Vipertex® works extraordinarily well at lower flow rates (Reynolds numbers at or below 1000), but it is very interesting to note that there is an opportunity to reduce flow rate in your design to take advantage of this high-efficiency at the lower rate to reduce pumping power. For instance, you may be able to provide less pumping power to accomplish the same result.

For more information, read Geometric Optimization for Thermal-hydraulic Performance of Dimpled Enhanced Tubes for Single Phase Flow, a paper published in Applied Thermal Engineering, detailing the results of Vipertex® 1EHT tubes.

Even at very high flow rates, Vipertex® 1EHT has been demonstrated, based on HTRI calculations, to provide twice the heat transfer performance of smooth tubes. This is equal to, or better than, the performance of many other enhanced tubes. It is important to investigate the applicability of Vipertex® to your application, even under high flow rate conditions.

To begin a conversation with the Vipertex® team about your application, click here.

Fouling Risk

Vipertex® enhanced surfaces have anti-fouling characteristics. More can be learned by reading Fouling Results of Vipertex® 1EHT Tubes in Crude, presented at HTRI Global Conference 2017.

It is important to consider what substances come in contact with the enhanced surfaces in your heat exchanger. As the leader in metal surface engineering, Rigidized® Metals has other surface designs like hydrophobic stainless steel and titanium finishes that may further enhance the anti-fouling performance of Vipertex® tubes in certain applications. The Vipertex® team is at your disposal to help you determine the best solution for your application. Click here to begin a conversation with them.

Charging Substance

Since Vipertex® tubes are produced in a variety of alloy systems, optimization is possible to accommodate a wide variety of charging substances. It is important to consider what substances come in contact with the enhanced surfaces in your heat exchanger. This is helpful in determining a suitable alloy, as well as a suitable enhanced heat transfer pattern.

If fouling is a concern, Vipertex® enhanced surfaces have anti-fouling characteristics. More can be learned by reading Fouling Results of Vipertex® 1EHT TUbes in Crude, presented at HTRI Global Conference 2017.

To begin a conversation with the Vipertex® team about your application, click here.

Temperature Range

Vipertex® enhanced surfaces can be produced in a number of alloy systems that can be optimized for operating temperatures ranging from high temperature to cryo-genic.

To begin a conversation with the Vipertex® team about your application, click here.