The Effect of Laminar and Turbulent Flow on Phase Change Materials for Energy Recovery
Keywords:Phase change materials, energy storage, recovery, laminar flow, turbulent flow
Phase change materials (PCMs) can be used for energy storage and recovery, and it is interesting to see what effect laminar and turbulent flows would have on them. a phase change material is a substance with a high heat of fusion, melting, and solidifying at a certain temperature, which is capable of storing and releasing large amounts of energy. laminar flow is a slower and smoother flow where the flow is parallel and there is no disruption between layers. turbulent flow is more chaotic, and its flow pattern cannot be predicted. paraffin wax was used as the PCM, and water was used for turbulent flow while mineral oil was used for laminar flow. the goal of this research is to improve the efficiency of a system by performing experiments with corrugated plates and paraffin wax as the PCM within the recovery unit. corrugated plates were used as an advanced material and channels of media which carry the thermal fluid (water or mineral oil) to the back plate of the unit which was occupied with the PCM. the experiment measured the temperature in and out from the unit to estimate how much watts (power) that the unit can save in the molten wax and, monitor the temperature inside the PCM using implanted thermocouples. the approach of this work is to collect temperature as a function of time to find how much energy units are used to reach the charging point and reverse the flow to retrieve energy from the unit.
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