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Experimental Investigation of a Phase-Change Material’s Stabilizing Role in a Pilot of Smart Salt-Gradient Solar Ponds

Karim Choubani1,2,*, Ons Ghriss3, Nashmi H. Alrasheedi1, Sirin Dhaoui2, Abdallah Bouabidi2

1 Department of Mechanical Engineering, College of Engineering, Imam Mohammad Ibn Saud Islamic University, Riyadh, 11432, Saudi Arabia
2 Mechanical Modeling, Energy & Materials (M2EM), UR17ES47, National School of Engineers of Gabes (ENIG), University of GabesAvenue of Omar Ib-Elkhattab, Zrig, Gabes, 6023, Tunisia
3 National Engineering School of Gabes (ENIG), Research Laboratory “Processes, Energetics Environment and Electrical Systems”, Gabes University, Omar Ibn Kattab Zrig, Gabes, 6029, Tunisia

* Corresponding Authors: Karim Choubani. Email: email,email

(This article belongs to this Special Issue: Heat and Mass Transfer in Thermal Energy Storage)

Frontiers in Heat and Mass Transfer 2024, 22(1), 341-358.


Faced with the world’s environmental and energy-related challenges, researchers are turning to innovative, sustainable and intelligent solutions to produce, store, and distribute energy. This work explores the trend of using a smart sensor to monitor the stability and efficiency of a salt-gradient solar pond. Several studies have been conducted to improve the thermal efficiency of salt-gradient solar ponds by introducing other materials. This study investigates the thermal and salinity behaviors of a pilot of smart salt-gradient solar ponds with (SGSP) and without (SGSPP) paraffin wax (PW) as a phase-change material (PCM). Temperature and salinity were measured experimentally using a smart sensor, with the measurements being used to investigate the stabilizing effects of placing the PCM in the solar pond’s lower convective zone. The experimental results show that the pond with the PCM (SGSPP) achieved greater thermal and salinity stability, with there being a lesser temperature and salinity gradient between the different layers when compared to a solar pond without the PCM (SGSP). The use of the PCM, therefore, helped control the maximum and minimum temperature of the pond’s storage zone. The UCZ has been found to operate approximately 4 degrees above the average ambient temperature of the day in the SGSPP and 7 degrees in SGSP. Moreover, an unstable situation is generated after 5 days from starting the operation and at 1.9 m from the bottom, and certain points have the tendency to be neutral from the upper depths in 1, 3 m of the bottom.


Cite This Article

Choubani, K., Ghriss, O., Alrasheedi, N. H., Dhaoui, S., Bouabidi, A. (2024). Experimental Investigation of a Phase-Change Material’s Stabilizing Role in a Pilot of Smart Salt-Gradient Solar Ponds. Frontiers in Heat and Mass Transfer, 22(1), 341–358.

cc This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License , which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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