Multivariant optimization and sensitivity analysis of an experimental vertical earth-to-air heat exchanger system integrating phase change material with Taguchi method

Zhengxuan Liu, Pengchen Sun, Mingjing Xie, Yuekuan Zhou, Yingdong He, Guoqiang Zhang, Dachuan Chen, Shuisheng Li, Zhongjun Yan, Di Qin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

31 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Shallow subterranean ventilation of earth-to-air heat exchanger (EAHE) system can improve renewable utilisation, decrease CO 2 emission and promote carbon-neutral transition. However, the conventional EAHE system has drawbacks, e.g., large occupied land area, low energy-usage efficiency, small falling gradient for buried pipe and fluctuated outlet air temperature. This study proposes a vertical EAHE integrated with annular PCM with advantages, including less occupied floor space, higher energy efficiency, better centralised discharge of air condensate water and more stable outlet air temperature. An experimental test-rig was established for online testing and the real-time monitored data was for modelling calibration to characterise the sophisticated heat transfer in phase change process. Afterwards, multivariant analysis on thermo-physical PCM parameters was conducted on cooling capacity and outlet air temperature fluctuation. A dimensionality reduction approach from redundant experiments was adopted for multivariant optimization and sensitivity analysis. Results show that PCM fusion temperature and latent heat of PCM dominate the cooling capacity with percentage contribution of 37.61% and 28.91%, respectively. PCM thickness and melting temperature dominate the temperature fluctuation with percentage contribution of 31.27% and 26.18%, respectively. This study provides benchmark and guidelines on PCM thermo-physical parameters’ selection with an efficient dimensionality reduction approach, paving path for application of the vertical EAHE integrated with PCMs in buildings.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)401-414
Number of pages14
JournalRenewable Energy
Volume173
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Geothermal energy
  • Vertical earth-to-air heat exchanger
  • Multivariant optimization
  • Taguchi method
  • Dimensionality reduction
  • Phase change material

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