19 Examples Of Convection Heat Transfer


When we take a cup of hot water, after a while, it loses heat. It is due to convection. In this post, we will know examples of convection heat transfer.

Convection is one of the essential types of heat transfer which involves the movement of hot molecules of air and liquid in a massive portion. Convection occurs when there is both diffusion and advection. It cannot happen in solid matter. The process of convection can occur both naturally and externally.

Now let’s learn about the examples of convection heat transfer in daily life.

Examples of Convection Heat transfer.

In daily life, we can experience many things where convection occurs. Some examples of convection heat transfer are as follows,

Now let us learn about these examples.

Explanation of Examples of convection heat transfer

The critical process of heat transfer is convection which occurs in all aspects of nature.

Refrigerator

The mechanism of heat transfer in refrigerators is a type of forced convection. The refrigerator consists of many compartments, such as a freezer, sink, and pump. The freezer cools down the air present in the upper region. Later it is replaced by warmer air particles in the lower part to maintain the refrigerator’s temperature.

Popcorn maker

The convection mechanism is used in the device of the popcorn processor. It consists of a fan, a heating material, and a vent. When the device turns on, the fan blows hot air equally on the material on which kernels are placed. It results in expanding and popping of the grains of popcorn. Therefore, it is an example of convection of heat transfer to process food.

Melting of ice

Convection is the process that helps in the reduction of solid ice into liquid form. As a layer of hot air passes over the ice region, the temperature on the outer layer of ice increases, leading to the melting of ice. If the warm air blows at high speed, there will a less time for the ice to melt. It is a natural example of convection heat transfer.

Circulation of blood in human-beings

Convection heat transfer is the process that helps regulation of body temperature in humans and even in mammals. The heart is the organ that pumps the blood, which circulates through the whole body. During pumping, the cells generate heat by the cells transferred to the water surface over the skin. If the temperature of the layer of leather is high, then there is a loss of heat in the body and vice versa.

AC: Air Conditioner

Air conditions are in continuous use on a hot sunny day. Even the air-conditioners work on the process of convection. The cold denser air released by the AC sinks replaced by the hot air, which raises upwards and is less dense. It results in the cooling up of a place due to convection current. It is a real-life example of convection heat- transfer.

Black holes

The rotating matter shaped in the form of the disc, which is present in a black hole called accretion disc, involves the movement of dust and gas-particle at a speed approximately close to the light. Here the convection occurs due to the expenditure of gravitational energy in the disc. It is an uncommon example of convection.

Convection Radiators

A radiator is a device used in the transfer of heat energy to two different mediums. A large amount of heat is transferred to vehicles, electric appliances, and even in buildings using the principle of convection. Steam from internal coils raises, and it is pulled away by cooler air that comes from the radiator’s base. The movement results in convection currents that equally distribute warm air.

Image credit: Airflow in room due to convection induced by a radiator by SVGguru, CC-BY-SA-4.0

Hot-air balloon

The rising of air balloons is due to convection heat transfer. The hot-air balloons increase only up to a specific limit of height in the sky. The limitation is due to the convection of air. A heat producer is present below the airbag that increases the heat to rise upwards; similarly to lowering the balloon, some warm air is replaced by cold air.

Hot coffee/tea or milk

A glass of hot beverage gives comfort on a rainy day. The mechanism of convection occurs in these hot beverages.  The layer of steam observed on the hot tea/ milk glass is the warm air, replaced by cold air.

Rain, thunder, and storms

The cumulonimbus clouds, responsible for rain, thunder, and storms, are formed due to convection in the atmosphere. When the evaporation takes place, the water vapor in saturating form leads to the development of clouds, and it is a necessary example of convection heat transfer in nature.

Convection Oven

Convection ovens use the process of convection heat transfer for cooking food in a faster way. In many food industries, convection ovens are in use to bake and manufacture certain products. It consists of a fan that helps in evenly cooking food inside the oven. It is undoubtedly a unique example of convection heat transfer.

Air-cooled Engines

When the engines of vehicles like trucks, buses, bikes, cars, etc., are highly heated, they are made to come in control by using water jackets. Continuous engine use warms the water present in the coat; the small fans present in the fan cool down the hot water. It once again goes back to the engine resulting in the process of convection.

Image: Convection in Air cooled Engine

Chimney

The chimney effect happens due to buoyancy when there is a movement of air in houses or buildings. It is due to differences in condensation or temperature. Here, the denser, calm wind moves away from the less-denser hot mixture of gases. It is a prominent example of convection heat transfer.

Convection zone in stars

The convection zone in stars is a type of natural convection of heat transfer. Many unstable processes occur inside a star that helps in the transfer of energy. When the mixture of gases is heated to a temperature higher than the surrounding atmosphere, they expand and cool after some time.

Heat Sink

A heat sink is an excellent example of convection heat transfer which is used mainly in electronic devices. The heat exchange in this sink takes place in a passive form which improves the rate of convection. It is always equipped with some other devices such as a fan to maintain the temperature.

Cumulus clouds

The formation of cumulus clouds is due to convection. They are also known as puffy white cotton clouds. When the upward current of air carries water vapor in the atmosphere, they are bright when faced directly towards the sun. Cumulus clouds are unique examples of convection heat transfer.

Cumulonimbus clouds

Cumulonimbus is the type of cloud which forms with the help of convection. The cumulus clouds move upward Together, and they become large cumulonimbus clouds responsible for thunder and storms in nature. They appear grey since they face opposite to the sun.

Effect of Marangoni

One of the critical effects of convection in fluids is the Effect of Marangoni. It occurs mainly due to gradient difference of surface tension, where the fluid with more surface tension attracts the liquid, which is nearer than the fluid with low surface tension.

Earth’s Mantle

Convection is a necessary process responsible for the mantle’s motion in the earth’s core surface. It is mainly due to the convection currents that transfer heat from the internal core to the earth’s surface. It is an essential and fundamental example of convection heat transfer.

These are actual examples of convection heat transfer.

You can also read about : Advection vs convection

Frequently asked questions | FAQs

What are the advantages of a convection oven?

The advantages of convection process in ovens in preparing food-products are as given below,

  • Equal distribution of hot air inside the convection oven.
  • The rotation of the fan is lesser inside the oven.
  •  A texture of crispness and roast is seen.
  • It helps in the quick process of baking.
  • The time of preheating is less compared to typical ovens.
  •  Can bake multiple dishes at the same time.
  • It can be operated for a long time.

What is the primary example of convection heat transfer?

The primary example of convection heat transfer is land and sea breeze.

Both land and sea breeze help in regulating the temperature of the atmosphere. The movement of hot and cold air is due to convection that controls the atmospheric temperature.

What are the things that do not use convection?

Some food products are baked in conduction ovens but do not use the principle of convection.

The making of apple flans and custards, a sweet cuisine, does not use the convection process. The blowing of warm air on this food makes it dry. It is the reason for not baking under the convection mechanism.

What are factors that affect convection?

The critical factors which affect convention are as follows,

  • The surface area of the material.
  • The density of the fluid.
  • Value of conductivity of the object.
  • The viscosity of the fluid.
  • Acceleration due to gravity.

Mention the factors that do not affect convection?

Specific processes do not influence the convection process

The factors on which the convection heat mechanism does not depend are the volume and the value of specific heat of the object, which acts as a medium of heat transfer.

Raghavi Acharya

I am Raghavi Acharya, I have completed my post-graduation in physics with a specialization in the field of condensed matter physics. Having a very good understanding in Latex, gnu-plot and octave. I have always considered Physics to be a captivating area of study and I enjoy exploring the various fields of this subject. In my free time, I engage myself in digital art. My articles are aimed towards delivering the concepts of physics in a very simplified manner to the readers. Let’s connect through - LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/raghavi-c-s-260a801b1 EMAIL ID: raghavics6@gmail.com

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