A cooler for dense-array CPV receivers based on metal foam

Yuri Flitsanov*, Abraham Kribus

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations

Abstract

Open-cell metal foams were experimentally evaluated as heat transfer enhancers in a cold plate suitable for concentrating photovoltaic (CPV) receivers. Aluminum based foams with 20, 30 and 40 pores per inch (PPI) were tested in a compact heat exchanger with forced convection of water over a range of flow rates and heating rates. Heat transfer rate and pressure drop were characterized as a function of water flow rate through the heat exchanger. The results were compared to a commercially available cooling plate solution and to previous studies with different configurations of water-cooled metal foams. The results show a better combination of heat transfer and pressure drop performance with the metal foam solution compared to the commercial cooler. Estimate of the impact on the CPV receiver performance in an example case shows that using the metal foam cooler may increase the electricity production by about 1.5%.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)25-31
Number of pages7
JournalSolar Energy
Volume160
DOIs
StatePublished - 15 Jan 2018

Keywords

  • Concentrating photovoltaics (CPV)
  • Metal foam
  • Porous media

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