Influence of Pore Density and Porosity on the Melting process of Bio-based nano-PCM inside Open-Cell Metal Foam

[+] Author and Article Information
Kumar Venkateshwar

School of Engineering, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON, CN

Soroush Ebadi

School of Engineering, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON, CN

Hari Simha

School of Engineering, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON, CN

Shohel Mahmud

School of Engineering, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON, CN

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4043662 History: Received November 29, 2018; Revised April 15, 2019


An experimental investigations was carried out to observe the melting process of a bio-based nano-PCM inside open-cell metal foams. Copper oxide nanoparticles with five different weight fractions were dispersed into bio-based PCM (i.e., coconut oil) to synthesize nano-PCMs. Open-cell aluminium foams of different porosities and pore densities were considered. An experimental setup was constructed to monitor the progression of the melting process and to measure transient temperatures variations at different selected locations. Average Thermal Energy Storage Rate (TESR) was calculated, alongside the melting time was recorded. The effects of various nanoparticles concentration, metal foam pore densities, porosities, and isothermal surface temperature on the melting time, TESR, thermal energy distribution, and the melting behaviour were studied. It was observed that the melting time significantly reduced by using metal foam and increasing the isothermal surface temperature. It was concluded that the effect of adding nanoparticles on the TESR depends on the characteristics of metal foam, as well as, the weight fractions of nanoparticles. The enhancement in TESR varied from -1% to 8.6% upon addition of 0.10% wt. nanoparticles compared to pure PCM. While the increase in the nanoparticles concentration from 0.10% to 0.30% changed TESR by -10.6% to 4.5%. The results provide an insight to the interdependencies of the different parameters as pore density and porosity of metal foam and nanoparticles concentration on the melting process of nano-PCM in metal foam.

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