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Technical Brief

Modeling Radiative-convective Cooling Panels for Nighttime Passive Cooling Applications

[+] Author and Article Information
Ana Dyreson

Solar Energy Laboratory, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Wisconsin - Madison, 1337 Engineering Research Building, 1500 Engineering Drive, Madison, WI 53706-1687
adyreson@wisc.edu

S.A. Klein

Solar Energy Laboratory, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Wisconsin - Madison, 1343 Engineering Research Building, 1500 Engineering Drive, Madison, WI 53706-1687
saklein@wisc.edu

Franklin Miller

Solar Energy Laboratory, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Wisconsin - Madison, 1341 Engineering Research Building, 1500 Engineering Drive, Madison, WI 53706-1687
fkmiller@wisc.edu

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4037379 History: Received December 16, 2016; Revised July 10, 2017

Abstract

Passive cooling by combined radiation-convection from black panels at night is a potential source of significant energy-efficient cooling for both homes and industry. Assessing the technology requires system models that connect cooling load, passive cooling technology performance, and changing weather conditions in annual simulations. In this paper the performance an existing analytical model for a passive cooling panel is validated using a full two dimensional finite differences model. The analytical model is based on a solar hot water collector model but uses the concept of adiabatic surface temperature to create an intuitive, physically meaningful sink temperature for combined convection and radiation cooling. Simulation results are reported for cooling panels of different sizes and operating in both low temperature (comfort cooling) and high temperature (power plant) applications. The analytical model using adiabatic minimum temperature agrees with the high-fidelity finite differences model but is more practical to implement. This model and the validations are useful for the continued study of passive cooling technology, in particular as it is integrated into system-level models of higher complexity.

Copyright (c) 2017 by ASME
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