Heat Transfer Characteristic Study of Solar Collector integrated with/without Phase Change Material (RT42) Solar thermal

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Sarawut Polvongsri


This research aims to investigate the heat transfer phenomenon of a solar collector integrated with a phase change material (PCM). The various experiments are tested in different riser sizes, including a 16 mm tube (PCM1), a 10 mm tube (PCM2) that filled with PCM RT42, and a riser tube without PCM (conventional solar collector). These case studies are tested with different mass flow rates of 0.01, 0.02, and 0.03 kg/s∙m2, respectively, following ASHRAE 93-2003 standard condition used to analyze the collector system's thermal performance and heat transfer characteristics. Using PCM, the solar collector heat gains investigation reveals that the input temperature is adjusted low, resulting in significant energy absorption and minimal heat loss. The standard condition tested is setting the input temperature slightly higher, which revealed that the heat gain of the solar collector decreased while the heat loss increased under the limit ambient temperature. Both solar collectors with PCM (PCM1 and PCM2) are given the thermal performance represented by FR(τα)e, and FRUL gets higher than the conventional collector (without PCM). The highest thermal performance was achieved at a mass flow rate of 0.03 kg/s∙m2, following the same pattern as the changing convective heat transfer coefficient. The maximum convective heat transfer coefficient value is 131.06 W/m2⸱K of PCM1 while followed by PCM2 and without PCM, respectively. In addition, the empirical correlation equation for predicting the convective heat transfer coefficient of solar collectors integrated with PCM was presented.

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