Renewable energy resources such as solar energy are essential to play an important role to increase the energy production share. However, solar energy is available for limited hours and that also having variations in its intensity. Therefore, thermal energy storage is essential to accommodate within solar thermal systems for consistency in operation. High energy storage density and proper heat transfer are essential requirements from thermal energy storage. Latent thermal energy storage (LTES) is a preferred choice for storing thermal energy in a compact space compared to sensible thermal energy storage (STES). From the previous studies, it is reported that previously designed LTES with heat exchangers have not proven effective due to improper heat transfer because of the low heat transfer area and complicated designs. Hence, the packed bed thermal energy concept is discussed in the literature to carry out proper heat transfer and simple design.
In this presented study, a packed bed latent thermal energy storage is developed by placing PCM (Paraffin wax 58-60°C) filled within spherical shaped balls of HDPE material inside a TES of cylindrical shape. Charging and discharging loops are actualized with the help of heater and radiator with exhaust fan respectively. An experimental investigation is carried out for the analysis of the charging and discharging behaviour of the developed PBLTES. A total of 9 modes are analyzed for analyzing the charging/discharging behaviour of PBLTES developed.