Investigation of a three-phase thermochemical reactor through an experimentally validated numerical modelling

Cheng Zeng, Shuli Liu, Liu Yang, Xiaojing Han, Ming Song, Ashish Shukla

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    7 Citations (Scopus)
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    For some renewable energy such as solar energy, the mismatch between the side of generation and demand should be tackled by thermal energy storage techniques with high energy density and low thermal losses. Thermochemical energy storage is a promising technology to meet these requirements. Within a thermochemical energy storage system, reactor is one of the critical components to achieve the optimal performance. While few studies have investigated the three-phase reactor applied in open thermochemical system in building’s application. This study presents a numerical description of a three-phase thermochemical reactor with air, solid thermochemical material and water flow. Zeolite 13X has been selected as the working thermochemical material and experimental tests have been conducted to obtain the temperature profiles in both the charging and discharging processes. A two dimensional numerical model of the reactors has been developed, verified and validated. A good agreement has been obtained by comparing the numerical and experimental results with the root mean square percent error ranging from 6.02% to 12.29%. Additionally, parameters sensitivity analysis has been conducted for reference diffusivity, heterogeneity factor, and initial water uptake of the zeolite. The numerical model and the investigation provide the tool for reactor design optimisation, charging and discharging processes evaluation and reactor performance improvement.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number114223
    Number of pages35
    JournalApplied Thermal Engineering
    Early online date8 Aug 2019
    Publication statusPublished - 5 Nov 2019

    Bibliographical note

    NOTICE: this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in , Applied Thermal Engineering. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in, Applied Thermal Engineering, [162] , (2019)] DOI: 10.1016/j.applthermaleng.2019.114223

    © 2019, Elsevier. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International


    • Thermochemical energy storage
    • Adsorption
    • Numerical modelling
    • Three-phase thermochemical reactor
    • Zeolite 13X


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