This paper reviews the development of latent heat thermal energy storage systems studied detailing various phase change materials (PCMs) investigated over the last three decades, the heat transfer and enhancement techniques employed in PCMs to effectively charge and discharge latent heat energy and the formulation of the phase change problem. It also examines the geometry and configurations of PCM containers and a series of numerical and experimental tests undertaken to assess the effects of parameters such as the inlet temperature and the mass flow rate of the heat transfer fluid (HTF). It is concluded that most of the phase change problems have been carried out at temperature ranges between 0 °C and 60 °C suitable for domestic heating applications. In terms of problem formulation, the common approach has been the use of enthalpy formulation. Heat transfer in the phase change problem was previously formulated using pure conduction approach but the problem has moved to a different level of complexity with added convection in the melt being accounted for. There is no standard method (such as British Standards or EU standards) developed to test for PCMs, making it difficult for comparison to be made to assess the suitability of PCMs to particular applications. A unified platform such as British Standards, EU standards needs to be developed to ensure same or similar procedure and analysis (performance curves) to allow comparison and knowledge gained from one test to be applied to another.
Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews – Elsevier
Published: Feb 1, 2010
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