The present work is to numerically investigate the effect of heater side factors on the nucleate boiling at high heat flux, which is characterized by the existence of macrolayer. Two-region equations are proposed to study both thermo-capillary driven flow in the liquid layer and heat conduction in the solid wall. The numerical results indicate that the thermo-capillary driven flow in the macrolayer and evaporation at the vapor-liquid interface constitute a very efficient heat transfer mechanism to explain the high heat transfer coefficient of nucleate boiling heat transfer near CHF. For a very thin wall and/or wall with a poor thermal conductivity (heat side factors) are found to have significant effect on flow pattern in the liquid layer and the temperature distribution in the heated wall. (C) 1999 Elsevier Science Ltd.