Thermal Analysis and Fundamental Tests on a Heat Pipe Receiver for a Solar Dynamic Space Power System

[+] Author and Article Information
Makoto Fujiwara, Tamotsu Sano

Takasago R&D Center, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd., Takasago, 676, Japan

Kiyoshi Suzuki, Shinya Watanabe

Space Systems Project Department, Kobe Shipyard and Machinery Works, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd., Kobe, 652, Japan

J. Sol. Energy Eng 112(3), 177-182 (Aug 01, 1990) (6 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2930477 History: Received December 02, 1989; Revised February 26, 1990; Online June 06, 2008


Studies and fundamental tests were conducted on the heat pipe receiver. The advantages of this receiver are not only the improvement of reliability by the temperature uniformity, but the effective use of phase change thermal storage materials. The latter makes the receiver lighter and smaller. A performance analysis of the heat pipe receiver containing the thermal storage material was conducted using a computer program. Potassium was used as the working fluid of the heat pipe receiver. Results are compared with conventional receivers. The thermal storage ability of the phase change material (LiF-CaF2 ) was examined, and the influence of the volume change of the thermal storage material during its phase changes was also examined separately by an elementary test in a thermal storage tube. A prototype of the heat pipe receiver element was fabricated, and its performance was studied by simulating the insolation cycle with an electric heater.

Copyright © 1990 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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