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Research Papers

Radiation Absorption in a Particle Curtain Exposed to Direct High-Flux Solar Irradiation

[+] Author and Article Information
Apurv Kumar

Research School of Engineering,
The Australian National University,
Canberra 2601, Australia
e-mail: apurv.kumar@anu.edu.au

Jin-Soo Kim

CSIRO Energy,
Newcastle 2304, Australia
e-mail: jin-soo.kim@csiro.au

Wojciech Lipiński

Research School of Engineering,
The Australian National University,
Canberra 2601, Australia
e-mail: wojciech.lipinski@anu.edu.au

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Solar Energy Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF SOLAR ENERGY ENGINEERING: INCLUDING WIND ENERGY AND BUILDING ENERGY CONSERVATION. Manuscript received October 4, 2017; final manuscript received May 14, 2018; published online June 26, 2018. Assoc. Editor: Marc Röger.

J. Sol. Energy Eng 140(6), 061007 (Jun 26, 2018) (17 pages) Paper No: SOL-17-1413; doi: 10.1115/1.4040290 History: Received October 04, 2017; Revised May 14, 2018

Radiation absorption is investigated in a particle curtain formed in a solar free-falling particle receiver. An Eulerian–Eulerian granular two-phase model is used to solve the two-dimensional mass and momentum equations by employing computational fluid dynamics (CFD) to find particle distribution in the curtain. The radiative transfer equation (RTE) is subsequently solved by the Monte Carlo (MC) ray-tracing technique to obtain the radiation intensity distribution in the particle curtain. The predicted opacity is validated with the experimental results reported in the literature for 280 and 697 μm sintered bauxite particles. The particle curtain is found to absorb the solar radiation most efficiently at flowrates upper-bounded at approximately 20 kg s−1 m−1. In comparison, 280 μm particles have higher average absorptance than 697 μm particles (due to higher radiation extinction characteristics) at similar particle flowrates. However, as the absorption of solar radiation becomes more efficient, nonuniform radiation absorption across the particle curtain and hydrodynamic instability in the receiver are more probable.

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Figures

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Fig. 1

Physical and computational domains of the free-falling particle receiver. Particle inlet of width w is at x = 0.8 m.

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Fig. 2

Variation of particle mass flow rate with V-hopper outlet width

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Fig. 3

Validation of numerical results: ((a) and (b)) grid independent study, and (c) comparison of simulation results with those from Ho et al. [19] for 697 µm particles and different particle mass flow rates

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Fig. 4

Description of modeling strategies used in the present work for (a) single element model and (b) multisegmented element model

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Fig. 5

Computational algorithm of the Monte Carlo ray-tracing method with absorption suppression

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Fig. 6

Variation of height averaged absorptivity with number of rays for particle diameter 280 µm and mass-flowrate of 2.79 kg s−1 m−1

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Fig. 7

Inverse estimation of particle reflectivity from particle layer reflectivity using Monte Carlo ray tracing

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Fig. 8

Comparison of the particle curtain opacity obtained from MC ray tracing for particle diameter of (a) 280 and (b) 697 µm and different flowrates with experimental results of Ho et al. [19] and Kim et al. [20] (Lines represent MC ray tracing results and symbols represent experimental results)

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Fig. 9

Volume fraction contours for different particle inlet locations relative to the back wall for particle diameter of 280 µm and mass-flowrate of 2.79 kg s−1 m−1: (a) x = 0.4 m, (b) x = 0.8 m, and (c) x = 1.2 m (NB: scale is logarithmic)

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Fig. 10

Air vertical-velocity contours and air streamlines for different location of the particle inlet relative to the back wallforparticle diameter of 280 µm and mass-flowrates of 2.79 kg s−1 m−1: (a) x = 0.4 m and (b) x = 1.2 m

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Fig. 11

Distributions of average particle volume fraction along the length of fall of the particles for particle diameter of (a) 280 and (b) 697 µm

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Fig. 16

Variation of average absorptance of the particle curtain for particle diameter of 280 and 697 µm with particle mass flow rate

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Fig. 17

Distribution of the average absorptance of the particle cloud for different particle flow rates and particle reflectivity of particle diameter of (a) 280 µm and (b) 697 µm

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Fig. 19

Distribution of particle mass flux, absorption fraction and volumetric heat absorption per unit mass-flux in the particle curtain at top (y = 0 m) and bottom (y = 2 m) of the particle receiver for particle dimeter of 697 µm. (a) 2.49 kg s−1 m−1, y = 0 m, (b) 2.49 kg s−1 m−1, y = 2 m, (c) 6.5 kg s−1 m−1, y = 0 m, (d) 6.5 kg s−1 m−1, y = 2 m, (e) 19.25 kg s−1 m−1, y = 0 m, and (f)19.25 kg s−1 m−1, y = 2 m.

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Fig. 18

Distribution of particle mass-flux, absorption fraction and volumetric heat absorption per unit mass flux in the particle curtain at top (y = 0 m) and bottom (y = 2 m) of the particle receiver for particle diameter of 280 µm (a) 2.79 kg s−1 m−1, y = 0 m, (b) 2.79 kg s−1 m−1, y = 2 m, (c) 7 kg s−1 m−1, y = 0 m, (d) 7 kg s−1 m−1, y = 2 m, (e) 20 kg s−1 m−1, y = 0 m, and (f)20 kg s−1 m−11, y = 2 m

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Fig. 15

Distribution of opacity and overall absorptance for particle diameter if ((a) and (b)) 280 µm and ((c) and (d)) 697 µm for different flow rates

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Fig. 14

Velocity vector and particle volume fraction contour plot for particle diameter of (a) 280 µm and 2.79 kg s−1 m−1 and (b) 697 µm and 2.49 kg s−1 m−1 for 0 ≤ y ≤ 0.02 m

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Fig. 13

Characterization of particle collision inside the particle curtain using: (a) granular pressure (b) granular temperature and (c) particle x-velocity and volume fraction distribution across the curtain thickness at y = 0.01 m for particle diameter of 280 µm and mass-flowrate of 2.79 kg s−1 m−1 and 697 µm and mass flow rate of 2.49 kg s−1 m−1

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Fig. 12

Distributions of the particle volume fraction in the curtain at various height and mass flow rates for particle diameter of 280 and 697 µm: (a) 280 µm, 2.79 kg s−1 m−1, (b) 280 µm, 7 kg s−1 m−1, (c) 280 µm, 20 kg s−1 m−1, (d) 697 µm, 2.49 kg s−1 m−1, (e) 697 µm, 6.5 kg s−1 m−1, and (f) 697 µm, 19.25 kg s−1 m−1

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