Laminar flow and pressure loss in planar Tee joints: numerical simulations and flow analysis Articles uri icon

publication date

  • March 2022

start page

  • 75

end page

  • 89


  • 92

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0997-7546

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1873-7390


  • This paper presents a numerical investigation of the laminar flow and pressure drop characteristics of planar Tee joints, a canonical flow of interest for the thermal-hydraulic design of oil-immersed power transformer windings. After formulating the problem in nondimensional form, the steady, constant property flow in planar 90◦ Tee joints is computed numerically by integrating the Navier–Stokes equations with fully developed upstream and downstream boundary conditions. The analysis assumes a straight-through configuration in which the straight duct holds flow in the same direction before and after the junction, whereas the flow in the side branch can either divide from the incoming flow or combine with it. The analysis starts with the description of the flow patterns that emerge in the dividing and combining flow cases for all mass split ratios, 0 ≤ m˙ 1 ≤ 1, and a wide range of straight duct to side branch width ratios, 1 ≤ α ≤ 3, and Reynolds numbers of the common branch, 0 < Re3 ≤200, representative of the cooling oil flow in oil-immersed transformer winding. Flow maps for planar Tee joints are then presented, showing the existence of different regions in the (Re3, m˙ 1)-plane that exhibit different number and location of recirculation zones. Pressure distributions and secondary loss coefficients are then computed and analyzed, providing a numerical database that is used to develop new local pressure loss correlations for planar Tee joints in an accompanying paper.


  • Industrial Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering


  • tee joints; dividing and combining flows; recirculation zones; laminar flow maps; pressure distribution; transformer windings