Gradient-Zone Erosion by Extraction in Solar Ponds

[+] Author and Article Information
J. Estevadeordal, S. J. Kleis

Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Houston, Houston, TX 77204-4792

J. Sol. Energy Eng 117(2), 144-150 (May 01, 1995) (7 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2870849 History: Received May 01, 1994; Revised October 01, 1994; Online February 14, 2008


The erosion the dynamically stable gradient zone of a salinity-gradient solar pond, due to the extraction of fluid from the storage zone, is numerically investigated. The effects of fluid withdrawal rate, density stratification level, pond and diffuser geometries, and diffuser placement are considered. It is found, for a typical salinity-gradient solar pond with uniform salinity in the storage zone and a continuous salinity gradient above that a finite amount of fluid entrainment from the gradient zone is inevitable. That is, a finite density difference across the interface is always required for a finite extraction rate under steady-state conditions. The magnitude of the density difference is predicted as function of the geometric and flow parameters. From the results, it is possible to predict the total amount of fluid entrained from the gradient zone as the pond reaches steady-state for prescribed operating conditions.

Copyright © 1995 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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