The subject of this investigation was the film boiling of liquid drops on a hot horizontal surface (the Leidenfrost Phenomenon) . Using Gottfried and Bell's model of a Leidenfrost drop, the thickness of the vapor cushion beneath film boiling water drops, 6, was calculated over a range of test plate and drop temperatures. The results indicated that the vapor cushion thickness varied very slowly with test plate temperature and maintained a finite value at test plate temperatures where the Leidenfrost Phenomenon cannot be initiated. To experimentally verify this fact, a heat exchanger was fabricated to cool the hot test plate while water drops were film boiling on it. This revealed that the Leidenfrost state can be maintained down to an average test plate temperature of 54 C. The assumption that Leidenfrost drops exist at the boiling point of the liquid was tested. From this experiment, 93C was the measured temperature of a water drop film boiling on a test plate at a temperature of 300C.
Department, Program, or Center
School of Chemistry and Materials Science (COS)
Bonsignore, Frank, "An Investigation of the vapor cushion thickness, temperature, and vaporization time of Leidenfrost drops" (1981). Thesis. Rochester Institute of Technology. Accessed from
RIT – Main Campus