Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Meeting Chris Wood: Panels and Balls

Nov 3: I had a meeting with Dr Chris Wood (recently of our Department, and currently on Knowledge Partnership project with Roger Bullivants). He is very interested in the project and has many pertinent comments to enrich the project, both for Solar Geocharging and for the use of a Thermal Battery.

Balls: He took away one of the Phase Change spheres to conduct some tests on, eg to use a testing tank to estimate the actual thermal capacity of the ball and the phase change temperature. As we dont know where they came from (we think they came from China for a chinese PhD student to use for research) we can use his tank test to discover their specification retrospectively. If the Balls are unsuitable, we can use the Thermal Battery using other phase change material such as brickettes of Wax, Water, or PCM emulsion from BASF.
Panels: We discussed the flow through the panels and although I now have a 'parallel' flow through all of them, this is going to favour the western most panel (left hand) too much, risking a short circuit that leaves the rightmost panel cold.
So, we redesigned the plumbing to make a more equitable arrangement, grouping them in two parallel pairs, each pair being sequential in flow. All the panels exit and enter from the top end, with airlock valves in the loft to prevent air bubbles.

Post script with hindsight written 22 April 2010: I am trying to work out when the polycarbonate boxes first appeared - it is clear from this elevation that they were not in the frame in early November 2009.

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