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Title: Phase change material storage heater

A storage heater for storing heat and for heating a fluid, such as water, has an enclosure defining a chamber therein. The chamber has a lower portion and an upper portion with a heating element being disposed within the enclosure. A tube through which the fluid flows has an inlet and an outlet, both being disposed outside of the enclosure, and has a portion interconnecting the inlet and the outlet that passes through the enclosure. A densely packed bed of phase change material pellets is disposed within the enclosure and is surrounded by a viscous liquid, such as propylene glycol. The viscous liquid is in thermal communication with the heating element, the phase change material pellets, and the tube and transfers heat from the heating element to the pellets and from the pellets to the tube. The viscous fluid has a viscosity so that the frictional pressure drop of the fluid in contact with the phase change material pellets substantially reduces vertical thermal convection in the fluid. As the fluid flows through the tube heat is transferred from the viscous liquid to the fluid flowing through the tube, thereby heating the fluid.
 [1];  [1];  [1];  [1]
  1. (Gainesville, FL)
Issue Date:
OSTI Identifier:
University of Florida (Gainesville, FL) ORNL
Patent Number(s):
US 5687706
Contract Number:
Research Org:
Country of Publication:
United States
phase; change; material; storage; heater; storing; heat; heating; fluid; water; enclosure; defining; chamber; therein; portion; upper; element; disposed; tube; flows; inlet; outlet; outside; interconnecting; passes; densely; packed; bed; pellets; surrounded; viscous; liquid; propylene; glycol; thermal; communication; transfers; viscosity; frictional; pressure; drop; contact; substantially; reduces; vertical; convection; transferred; flowing; tube heat; viscous liquid; propylene glycol; chamber therein; material storage; substantially reduces; transfers heat; packed bed; thermal communication; heating element; change material; pressure drop; phase change; fluid flow; upper portion; fluid flows; substantially reduce; fluid flowing; storing heat; disposed outside; storage heater; enclosure defining; /126/165/