Wicking structures have been widely used within passive heat transfer devices with high heat fluxes, such as heat pipes, to enhance their thermal performance. While wicking structures promote capillary pumping of the working fluid as well as thin film evaporation, they can result in capillary evaporation and further enhances the evaporation heat transfer. In this study, a 0.5 mm thick layer of 105 μm sintered copper particles was added to the inner wall of a copper tube, aiming to enhance the heat transfer characteristics by taking advantage of capillary evaporation. Acetone was chosen as the working fluid, and the performance of an evaporation tube was tested for power inputs of 10, 30, 50, and 70 W. For each power input, trials were run at inclination angle varying from −90° and 90° to investigate the capillary effects. The temperature measurements showed that the temperature distribution along the evaporation tube is always downward sloping, meaning the temperature at the fluid inlet is larger than the outlet. Interestingly, the surface temperature at some locations is less than the outlet temperature, indicating the effect of capillary evaporation. In addition, a theoretical investigation was performed to investigate the effects of the particle size on the thermal performance of the evaporation tube and found that particle sizes affect capillary evaporation.

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