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Approximate analytical model for two-phase solidification problem in a finned phase-change material storage

Piia Lamberg

Applied Energy, 2004, vol. 77, issue 2, 131-152

Abstract: During the phase change in a phase-change material (PCM) storage system, the solid-liquid interface moves away from the heat transfer surface and the surface heat flux decreases due to the increasing thermal resistance of the molten or solidified medium. Heat-transfer enhancement techniques such as fins and honeycombs have to be used to increase the heat-transfer fraction in the store. The purpose of this paper is to develop a simplified analytical model which predicts the solid-liquid interface location and temperature distribution of the fin in the solidification process with a constant end-wall temperature in the finned two-dimensional PCM store. The storage is initially in a liquid state and its temperature is greater than the solidification temperature of the PCM. The analytical results are compared to the numerical results calculated using the heat-capacity method. The results show that the analytical model gives a satisfactory estimation for the fin temperature and the solid-liquid interface when the length-to-height ratio ([lambda]) of the storage cell is smaller than 6.0 and the fin length is smaller than 0.06 m. The error made in the fraction of solidified PCM is ±10% when the analytical model is used rather than the two-dimensional numerical model.

Keywords: PCM; Analytical; model; Solidification; problem; Finned; PCM; storage (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2004
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