Title: Performance of a solar drier with and without heat storage material for copra drying

Authors: M. Mohanraj, P. Chandrasekar

Addresses: Department of Mechanical Engineering, Dr. Mahalingam College of Engineering and Technology, Pollachi 642003, India. ' Department of Mechanical Engineering, Dr. Mahalingam College of Engineering and Technology, Pollachi 642003, India

Abstract: An indirect forced convection solar drier integrated with heat storage material was developed to test its performance for copra drying. The drier consists of a solar flat plate air heater integrated with a sensible heat storage unit, a drying chamber and a centrifugal blower. The experiments were carried out with and without the integration of heat storage materials. Sand mixed with aluminium scrap was used as a heat storage material in solar air heater. The moisture content (wet basis) of copra was reduced from about 52% to about 8% in 80 and 104 hour, respectively, for solar drier integrated with and without heat storage materials. The Specific Moisture Extraction Rate was estimated to be about 0.81 and 0.94 kg kW hour−1 for the solar air heater with and without heat storage materials, respectively. The average solar drier thermal efficiency was estimated to be about 23% in both the drying modes.

Keywords: copra drying; heat storage materials; solar dryers; specific moisture extraction rate; SMER; indirect forced convection; solar energy; solar power; sand; aluminium scrap; solar air heaters.

DOI: 10.1504/IJGEI.2009.023888

International Journal of Global Energy Issues, 2009 Vol.31 No.2, pp.112 - 121

Published online: 18 Mar 2009 *

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