This work presents the comparison between CFD and experimental results obtained on a sensible thermal energy storage system based on alumina beads freely poured into a carbon steel tank. Experimental investigations of charging and discharging phases were carried out at a constant mass flow rate using air as heat transfer fluid. The experimental set-up was instrumented with several thermocouples to detect axial and radial temperature distribution as well as reservoir wall temperature. The experimental results were compared with those obtained from CFD simulations carried out with the FLUENT software. The computational domain consists of an axisymmetric tank of cylindrical shape filled with a porous bed coupled with the wall. The governing equations are solved for incompressible turbulent flow and fully developed forced convection, based on the two-phase transient model equation (LTNE-local thermal non-equilibrium) to calculate the temperature of fluid and solid phases. The porosity of the bed is considered variable in the radial direction, while the thermodynamic properties of both phases are temperature-dependent. The influence of the thermal dispersion within the porous bed, as well as the effective conductivity between the beads was considered. The heat transfer coefficient was calculated according to correlation for forced convection within porous media. Numerical results show a good agreement with experimental ones if thermal properties are considered temperature-dependent and the experimental temperature profile at the inlet of the bed is applied as a boundary condition in the simulations.

A comparison between CFD simulation and experimental investigation of a packed-bed thermal energy storage system

CASCETTA, MARIO;CAU, GIORGIO;PUDDU, PIERPAOLO;
2016-01-01

Abstract

This work presents the comparison between CFD and experimental results obtained on a sensible thermal energy storage system based on alumina beads freely poured into a carbon steel tank. Experimental investigations of charging and discharging phases were carried out at a constant mass flow rate using air as heat transfer fluid. The experimental set-up was instrumented with several thermocouples to detect axial and radial temperature distribution as well as reservoir wall temperature. The experimental results were compared with those obtained from CFD simulations carried out with the FLUENT software. The computational domain consists of an axisymmetric tank of cylindrical shape filled with a porous bed coupled with the wall. The governing equations are solved for incompressible turbulent flow and fully developed forced convection, based on the two-phase transient model equation (LTNE-local thermal non-equilibrium) to calculate the temperature of fluid and solid phases. The porosity of the bed is considered variable in the radial direction, while the thermodynamic properties of both phases are temperature-dependent. The influence of the thermal dispersion within the porous bed, as well as the effective conductivity between the beads was considered. The heat transfer coefficient was calculated according to correlation for forced convection within porous media. Numerical results show a good agreement with experimental ones if thermal properties are considered temperature-dependent and the experimental temperature profile at the inlet of the bed is applied as a boundary condition in the simulations.
2016
CFD; experimental; packed beds; porous media; thermal energy storage (TES); thermocline; energy engineering and power technology; industrial and manufacturing engineering
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11584/178261
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