Thermodynamic analysis of a thermal storage unit under the influence of nano-particles added to the phase change material and/or the working fluid

Research paper by Mehran Abolghasemi, Ali Keshavarz, Mozaffar Ali Mehrabian

Indexed on: 05 Jul '12Published on: 05 Jul '12Published in: Heat and Mass Transfer


The thermal storage unit consists of two concentric cylinders where the working fluid flows through the internal cylinder and the annulus is filled with a phase change material. The system carries out a cyclic operation; each cycle consists of two processes. In the charging process the hot working fluid enters the internal cylinder and transfers heat to the phase change material. In the discharging process the cold working fluid enters the internal cylinder and absorbs heat from the phase change material. The differential equations governing the heat transfer between the two media are solved numerically. The numerical results are compared with the experimental results available in the literature. The performance of an energy storage unit is directly related to the thermal conductivity of nano-particles. The energy consumption of a residential unit whose energy is supplied by a thermal storage system can be reduced by 43 % when using nano-particles.