Desalination, Vol.455, 89-99, 2019
Performance of solar still using shape-stabilized PCM: Experimental and theoretical investigation
In this paper, both a novel experiment and simulation model was presented to evaluate the performance of a solar still by applying a new shape-stabilized phase change material (SSPCM). The SSPCM was characterized with stable shape, high thermal conductivity and high solar absorption. Firstly, an experiment for solar still with SSPCM was carried out, and the SSPCM used in the experiment got thermal conductivity 1.50 W/m K and solar absorption around 0.94, which can replace the conventional metal absorber plate. Then, a comprehensive heat transfer model for the solar still was built to analyze the effect of melting temperature and thermal conductivity of the SSPCM on the performance of the solar still. The experimental results revealed that the daily productivity of solar still with SSPCM was 3.41 L/m(2), 43.3% higher than that of conventional solar still without SSPCM. The simulation results showed that the daily productivity increased from 42% to 53% compared with that of conventional solar still when thermal conductivity of SSPCM increased from 0.2 W/m K to 4.0 W/m K. And increasing the melting temperature of SSPCM from 34 degrees C to 50 degrees C improved the percentage of enhancing productivity from 21.5% to 57.5%. Finally, the cost analysis was performed.