Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Mechanical Engineering

First Advisor

Dr. Ben Xu

Second Advisor

Dr. Stephen Crown

Third Advisor

Dr. Yingchen Yang


Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) using phase change material (PCM) as the storage medium in the Thermal Energy Storage (TES) system is a promising technology for large scale utilization of solar thermal energy because heat latent heat thermal energy storage (LHTES) systems can store more energy as the latent heat during the melting process.

This study analyzes the different dimensionless parameters from the 1-D transient enthalpy-based mathematical model used to simulate the heat transfer and flow within the LHTES system. These dimensionless parameters are varied and analyzed with the main objective of increasing thermal energy storage efficiency and exergy efficiency of LHTES systems. Three different methods are employed in this study to analyze efficiency. First, generalized diagrams are provided which can serve as a convenient tool for engineers, who can look up the charts to design and calibrate the size of the LHTES system without doing complicated system modeling and computations. Second, a cascade configuration of multiple PCMs modules (CLHTES) is analyzed and its efficiency compared with a LHTES consisting of a single PCM module. Finally, a more detailed study and analysis is made of a single PCM module LHTES system and its dimensionless parameters to determine the most sensitive parameters that affect thermal energy storage efficiency.


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