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Part Load Behavior of Molten Salt Cavity Receiver Solar Tower Plants Under Storage Mode Operational Mode

[+] Author Affiliations
S. Saeed Mostafavi Tehrani, Robert A. Taylor

University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia

Ardalan Shafiei Ghazani

Sharif University of Technology, Tehran, Iran

Pouya Saberi

K. N. Toosi University of Technology, Tehran, Iran

Paper No. ES2016-59703, pp. V001T04A027; 12 pages
  • ASME 2016 10th International Conference on Energy Sustainability collocated with the ASME 2016 Power Conference and the ASME 2016 14th International Conference on Fuel Cell Science, Engineering and Technology
  • Volume 1: Biofuels, Hydrogen, Syngas, and Alternate Fuels; CHP and Hybrid Power and Energy Systems; Concentrating Solar Power; Energy Storage; Environmental, Economic, and Policy Considerations of Advanced Energy Systems; Geothermal, Ocean, and Emerging Energy Technologies; Photovoltaics; Posters; Solar Chemistry; Sustainable Building Energy Systems; Sustainable Infrastructure and Transportation; Thermodynamic Analysis of Energy Systems; Wind Energy Systems and Technologies
  • Charlotte, North Carolina, USA, June 26–30, 2016
  • Conference Sponsors: Advanced Energy Systems Division, Solar Energy Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5022-0
  • Copyright © 2016 by ASME


The performance of the tower based concentrated solar thermal (CST-tower) plant is very sensitive to the operation strategy of the plant and the incident heat flux on the receiver. To date, most studies have been examined only the design mode characteristics of the cavity receivers, but this paper significantly expands the literature by considering non-design operating conditions of this important sub-component of the CST-tower plants. A feasible non-design operating conditions of the cavity receivers that was considered in this study is the storage mode of operation. Two practical dynamic control strategies were examined then to find the most efficient approach: fixed solar field mass flowrate (Approach “A”) and fixed outlet temperature at receiver (Approach “B”). To evaluate the performance of the cavity receiver, a thermal model is developed to be used for design and non-design analysis. The thermal model has been then validated against available data from the Gemasolar operating solar Tower plant. In non-design conditions, the effects of heat transfer fluid (solar salt) temperature and flowrate are mainly evaluated in terms of the non-dimensional receiver thermal output, non-dimensional power output, receiver energetic efficiency, receiver surface temperature, receiver outlet temperature, and the fraction of solar field usage. The results of this study (e.g. off design receiver efficiency correlations) assist researchers to evaluate cavity receivers without performing detail simulations. They also help investigators to choose an appropriate control strategy and to analyze the viability of other CST-tower subcomponents that have thermal interactions with the receiver (e.g. dynamic control of the phase change storage unit or its boundary conditions).

Copyright © 2016 by ASME



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