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Title: Performance of a Thermally Stable Polyaromatic Hydrocarbon in a Simulated Concentrating Solar Power Loop

Polyaromatic hydrocarbon thermal fluids showing thermally stability to 600 C have been tested for solar thermal-power applications. Although static thermal tests showed promising results for 1-phenylnaphthalene, loop testing at temperatures to 450 C indicated that the fluid isomerized and degraded at a slow rate. In a loop with a temperature high enough to drive the isomerization, the higher melting point byproducts tended to condense onto cooler surfaces. So, as experienced in loop operation, eventually the internal channels of cooler components in trough solar electric generating systems, such as the waste heat rejection exchanger, may become coated or clogged affecting loop performance. Thus, pure 1-phenylnaphthalene, without addition of stabilizers, does not appear to be a fluid that would have a sufficiently long lifetime (years to decades) to be used in a loop at the temperatures greater than 500 C. The performance of a concentrating solar loop using high temperature fluids was modeled based on the National Renewable Laboratory Solar Advisory Model. It was determined that a solar-to-electricity efficiency of up to 30% and a capacity factor of near 60% could be achieved using a high efficiency collector and 12 h thermal energy storage.
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  1. ORNL
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
DOE Contract Number:
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: AIMS Energy; Journal Volume: 2; Journal Issue: 1
Research Org:
Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL)
Sponsoring Org:
EE USDOE - Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EE)
Country of Publication:
United States
concentrating solar power; phenylnaphthalene; reaction kinetics; high temperature heat transfer fluids