Solar Energy, Vol.188, 1332-1348, 2019
Experimental analysis of a PCM integrated solar chimney under laboratory conditions
The objective of this work is to experimentally investigate the impact of integrating a Phase Change Material (PCM) on the performance of two different laboratory solar chimney prototypes, rendering it a viable option for yearlong use. It has been stated that solar chimneys can provide constant ventilation and increase air quality in a building. This study aims to provide a different approach in means of improving the current performance of solar chimneys as, nowadays, it is mostly pursued through the modification of the inclination, the air gap size or the inlet/outlet dimensions. The solar chimney prototype mainly analysed in this work is built with 2 cm plywood plates with a thermal conductivity of 0.15 W/mK with a volume of 3.50 x 1.00 x 0.30 m. After a 6 h charge period, a mean ventilation rate above 70 m(3)/h can be achieved with a relative low gain of 550 W/m(2) provided by a series of 7 halogen lamps directed towards an effective collector area of 3.00 m(2). The results obtained in this work show that PCM integration provides a higher ventilation rate and a slower decrease during ventilation only phases (6 h discharge), where the halogen lamps do not provide any energy to the solar chimney. Overall, the implementation of paraffinic PCMs in solar chimneys could be an economically viable option for hybrid design solutions to create a healthy indoor environment within residential buildings through renewable solar energy.