Nanofluids, which are liquids containing nanoparticles, are used to modify heat transfer performance in various systems. To explain the mechanism of heat transfer modification with nanofluids, many theories have been suggested based on numerical simulations without experimental validation because there is no suitable experimental method for measuring the velocity fields of nanofluid flows. In this study, the measurement accuracy of micro-particle image velocimetry (μ-PIV) is systemically quantified with Al2
and multi-walled carbon nanotube (MWCNT) nanofluids. Image quality, cross-correlation signal-to-noise ratio, displacement difference, and spurious vector ratio are investigated with static images obtained at various focal plane positions along the beam pathway. Applicable depth is enough to investigate micro-scale flows when the concentrations of Al2
and MWCNT nanofluids are lower than 0.01% and 0.005%, respectively. The velocity fields of Hagen–Poiseuille flow are measured and compared with theoretical velocity profiles. The measured velocity profiles present good agreement with the theoretical profiles throughout. This study provides the criteria for μ-PIV application and demonstrates that μ-PIV is a promising technique for measuring the velocity field information of nanofluids.
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