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Open AccessArticle

Numerical Investigation on the Effects of Baffles with Various Thermal and Geometrical Conditions on Thermo-Fluid Dynamics and Kinetic Power of a Solar Updraft Tower

1
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Graduate School, Chung-Ang University, 84 Heukseok-ro, Dongjak-gu, Seoul 06974, Republic of Korea
2
Department of Mechanical System Engineering, Graduate School, Chung-Ang University, 84 Heukseok-ro, Dongjak-gu, Seoul 06974, Republic of Korea
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Energies 2018, 11(9), 2230; https://doi.org/10.3390/en11092230
Received: 20 July 2018 / Revised: 13 August 2018 / Accepted: 22 August 2018 / Published: 25 August 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Solar Energy Harvesting, Storage and Utilization)
Solar updraft towers (SUTs) are used for renewable power generation, taking advantage of the thermal updraft air flow caused by solar energy. Aerodynamic devices have been applied to SUTs to improve their performance and the baffle is one such device. Here, we investigate the effect of baffle installation on the thermo-fluid dynamic phenomena in the collector of an SUT and how it enhances the overall SUT performance using computational fluid dynamics analysis. Two geometric parameters (height and width of baffle) and two thermal boundary conditions of the baffle (adiabatic condition and heat flux condition) were tested through simulations with 10 different models. The vortex generated by the baffle has a positive effect on the delivery of heat energy from the ground to the main flow; however, one disadvantage is that the baffle inherently increases the resistance of the main flow. Over 3% higher kinetic power was achieved with some of the simulated baffle models. Therefore, an optimum design for baffle installation can be achieved by considering the positive and negative thermo-fluid dynamics of baffles. View Full-Text
Keywords: solar updraft tower (SUT); baffle; computational fluid dynamics (CFD); vortex; kinetic power; heat transfer solar updraft tower (SUT); baffle; computational fluid dynamics (CFD); vortex; kinetic power; heat transfer
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Lee, S.; Kim, Y.S.; Park, J.Y. Numerical Investigation on the Effects of Baffles with Various Thermal and Geometrical Conditions on Thermo-Fluid Dynamics and Kinetic Power of a Solar Updraft Tower. Energies 2018, 11, 2230.

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