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Research Papers: Micro/Nanoscale Heat Transfer

Synthesis and Characterization of Nanofluids Useful in Concentrated Solar Power Plants Produced by New Mixing Methodologies for Large-Scale Production

[+] Author and Article Information
Manila Chieruzzi

Civil and Environmental Engineering Department,
University of Perugia,
UdR INSTM,
Strada di Pentima 4,
Terni 05100, Italy
e-mail: manila.chieruzzi@unipg.it

Adio Miliozzi

ENEA—Italian National Agency
for New Technologies,
Energy and Sustainable Economic Development,
Casaccia Research Centre Via Anguillarese,
S. Maria di Galeria 301,
Rome 00123, Italy
e-mail: adio.miliozzi@enea.it

Tommaso Crescenzi

ENEA—Italian National Agency
for New Technologies,
Energy and Sustainable Economic Development,
Casaccia Research Centre Via Anguillarese,
S. Maria di Galeria 301,
Rome 00123, Italy
e-mail: tommaso.crescenzi@enea.it

José M. Kenny

Civil and Environmental Engineering Department,
University of Perugia,
UdR INSTM,
Strada di Pentima 4,
Terni 05100, Italy
e-mail: jose.kenny@unipg.it

Luigi Torre

Civil and Environmental Engineering Department,
University of Perugia,
UdR INSTM,
Strada di Pentima 4,
Terni 05100, Italy
e-mail: luigi.torre@unipg.it

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Heat Transfer Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF HEAT TRANSFER. Manuscript received January 29, 2017; final manuscript received September 7, 2017; published online January 10, 2018. Assoc. Editor: Gennady Ziskind.

J. Heat Transfer 140(4), 042401 (Jan 10, 2018) (13 pages) Paper No: HT-17-1053; doi: 10.1115/1.4038415 History: Received January 29, 2017; Revised September 07, 2017

In this study, different nanofluids (NFs) were developed by mixing a molten salt mixture (60% NaNO3–40% KNO3) with 1.0 wt % of silica–alumina nanoparticles using different methods. These NFs can be used as thermal energy storage materials in concentrating solar plants with a reduction of storage material if the thermal properties of the base fluid are increased. New mixing procedures without sonication were introduced with the aim to avoid the sonication step and to allow the production of a greater amount of NF with a procedure potentially more suitable for large-scale productions. For this purpose, two mechanical mixers and a magnetic stirrer were used. Each NF was prepared in aqueous solution with a concentration of 100 g/l. The effect of different concentrations (300 g/l and 500 g/l) was also studied with the most effective mixer. Specific heat, melting temperature, and latent heat were measured by means of differential scanning calorimeter. Thermal conductivity and diffusivity in the solid state were also evaluated. The results show that the highest increase of the specific heat was obtained with 100 g/l both in solid (up to 31%) and in liquid phase (up to 14%) with the two mechanical mixers. The same NFs also showed higher amount of stored heat. An increase in thermal conductivity and diffusivity was also detected for high solution concentrations with a maximum of 25% and 47%, respectively. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and energy-dispersive X-ray analyses revealed that the grain size in the NFs is much smaller than in the salt mixture, especially for the NF showing the highest thermal properties increase, and a better nanoparticles distribution is achieved with the lowest concentration. NFs with enhanced thermal properties can be synthesized in a cost-effective form in high concentrated aqueous solutions by using mechanical mixers.

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Figures

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 2

Magnetic stirrer (a), Dispermat mixer (b), Heidolph RZR 2041 overhead mechanical stirrer (c), and salts and nanoparticles in aqueous solution (100 g/l) (d)

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Fig. 1

Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) image of the SiO2/Al2O3 nanoparticles

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Fig. 3

Specimen used in thermal conductivity test

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Fig. 4

Heat flow curves of NaNO3–KNO3 and the NFs obtained with different mechanical mixers and concentrations (1M: magnetic stirrer 100 g/l; 1D: Dispermat 100 g/l; 1H: Heidolph 100 g/l; 3H: Heidolph 300 g/l; and 5H: Heidolph 500 g/l)

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Fig. 7

Stored heat versus temperature for NaNO3–KNO3 binary salt mixture and NFs obtained with different mechanical mixers and concentrations (1M: magnetic stirrer 100 g/l; 1D: Dispermat 100 g/l; 1H: Heidolph 100 g/l; 3H: Heidolph 300 g/l; and 5H: Heidolph 500 g/l)

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Fig. 6

Comparison of specific heat curves at time zero and after one year: solid phase (a) and liquid phase (b) (1M: magnetic stirrer 100 g/l; 1D: Dispermat 100 g/l; 1H: Heidolph 100 g/l; 3H: Heidolph 300 g/l; and 5H: Heidolph 500 g/l)

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Fig. 8

SEM image of the base salt

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Fig. 9

SEM images of the NFs before and after thermal cycles: (a) 1M, (b) 1D, (c) 1H, (d) 3H, and (e) 5H and after thermal cycles: (f) 1M, (g) 1D, (h) 1H, (i) 3H, and (j) 5H (1M: magnetic stirrer 100 g/l; 1D: Dispermat 100 g/l; 1H: Heidolph 100 g/l; 3H: Heidolph 300 g/l; and 5H: Heidolph 500 g/l)

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Fig. 10

NFs based on 60NaNO3/40KNO3 with 1.0 wt % of SiO2/Al2O3 nanoparticles: (a)–(c) 1M, (d)–(f) 1D, (g)–(i) 1H, (j)–(l) 3H, and (m)–(o) 5H. (a), (d), (g), (h), and (m) EDX mapping of Si and Al (as points); (b), (e), (h), (k), and (n) EDX mapping of Si; and (c), (f), (i), (e), and (o) EDX mapping of Al (1M: magnetic stirrer 100 g/l; 1D: Dispermat 100 g/l; 1H: Heidolph 100 g/l; 3H: Heidolph 300 g/l; and 5H: Heidolph 500 g/l).

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Fig. 5

Variation of the specific heat with temperature of NaNO3–KNO3 and the NFs obtained with different mechanical mixers and concentrations in the solid phase (a) and in the liquid phase (b) (1M: magnetic stirrer 100 g/l; 1D: Dispermat 100 g/l; 1H: Heidolph 100 g/l; 3H: Heidolph 300 g/l; and 5H: Heidolph 500 g/l)

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Fig. 11

EDX mapping. Nanofluid 1H based on 60NaNO3/40KNO3 with 1.0 wt % of SiO2/Al2O3 nanoparticles: (a) mapping of Na, K, and Si; (b) EDX mapping of Na; and (c) EDX mapping of K (1H: Heidolph 100 g/l).

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