Performance Analysis of a Natural Phase Change Material-Based Solar Collector with Compound Parabolic Concentrator at Different Flow Rates

Md. Forhad Ibne Al Imam, Mohd. Rafiqul Alam Beg, Md. Shamimur Rahman


The impact of a natural phase change material (PCM) based thermal solar collector, with a compound parabolic concentrator (CPC), was investigated during summer. This paper introduces a natural PCM (beeswax) instead of commercial phase change material, which was used as an energy storage media to improve the performance parameter of the solar collector. In this study, the natural phase change material was used within the solar collector, as it was easily available in nature. The outdoor experiments were carried out where compound parabolic concentrator, made of glass, was mounted on thermal collector during the day time. The data of consecutive three months have been collected and analyzed in this paper. The system performance, such as, thermal efficiency, operating value and collected energy of the collector were tested at a set different flow rate. The date was measured and compared between the systems with and without phase change material.  Based on the measured collected energy and thermal efficiency, all parameter for the collectors as functions of water flow rate was obtained. This result shows that the maximum outlet water temperature of 50⁰C and the maximum thermal efficiency of 35-40% were achieved at a water flow rate of 0.004 kg/s. The system with PCM was illustrated to have much better performances. Phase change material was more effective to improve thermal efficiency in low solar radiation. The system reaches maximum plate temperature more quickly in June than in July and August. The highest absorber plate temperature reading found in June was 90⁰C and it took the system 3.5 hours to reach the point. ΔT/H operating value was inversely proportional to thermal efficiency. Water flow rate was proportional to collected energy and maximum collected energy was 456 W. It can be highlighted that the best water flow rate was 0.004 kg/s because it gives the maximum thermal efficiency and collected energy.


Acceptance angle; Compound parabolic concentrator; Efficiency; Thermal collector; Water flow rate.

Article Metrics

Abstract view : 32 times
PDF - 17 times

Full Text:



A. H. Jaaz, H. A. Hasan, K. Sopian, M. H. B. H. Ruslan and S.H. Zaidi, Design and development of compound parabolic concentrating for photovoltaic solar collector: Review, Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 76, 2017, 1108–1121.

C-W. Kuoa, P-S. Yana,and W-C. Changa, The design and optical analysis of compound parabolic collector, Procedia Engineering, 79, 2014, 258–262.

I. S. Gonzáleza, M. S. Reyesa, O. G. Vallaresb, N. Ortegab and V. H. Gómez, Design and evaluation of a compound parabolic concentrator for heat generation of thermal processes, Energy Procedia, 57, 2014, 2956–2965.

T. Koyuncua and F. Lüle, Thermal performance of a domestic chromium solar water collector with phase change material, Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences, 195, 2015, 2430–2442.

M. C. Browne, D. Quigley, H. R. Hard, S. Gilligan, N. C. C. Ribeiro, N. Almeida and S. J. McCormack, Assessing the thermal performance of phase change material in a photovoltaic/thermal system, Energy Procedia, 91, 2016,113–121.

M. Mazmana, L. F. Cabeza, H. Mehling, M. Nogues, H. Evliya and H. O. Paksoy, Utilization of phase change materials in solar domestic hot water systems, Renewable Energy, 34, 2009, 1639–1643.

A. Shukla, D. Buddhi and R. L. Sawhney, Solar water heaters with phase change material thermal energy storage medium: A review, Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 13, 2009, 2119–2125.

S. O. Enibe, Thermal analysis of a natural circulation solar air heater with phase change material energy storage, Renewable Energy, 28, 2003, 2269–2299.

N. M. Nahar, Year round performance and potential of a natural circulation type of solar water heater in India, Energy and Buildings, 35, 2003, 239-247.

H. M. S. Hussein, H. H. El-Ghetany and S. A. Nada, Experimental investigation of novel indirect solar cooker with indoor PCM thermal storage and cooking unit, Energy Conversion and Management, 49, 2008, 2237–2246.

R. Ramnanan-Singh, Formulation and thermophysical analysis of a beeswax microemulsion and the experimental calculation of its heat transfer coefficient, Thesis, City University of New York, New York, USA, 2012.

W. Su, J. Darkwa, G. Kokogiannakis, Review of solid-liquid phase change materials and their encapsulation technologies, Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 48, 2015, 373‒391.

A. Dinker, M. Agarwal and G. D. Agarwal, Experimental assessment on thermal storage performance of beeswax in a helical tube embedded storage unit, Applied Thermal Engineering, 111, 2017, 358–368.

N. Putra, E. Prawiro and M. Amin, Thermal properties of beeswax/cuo nano phase-change material used for thermal energy storage, International Journal of Technology, 2, 2016, 244-253.

H. P. Garg and J. Prakash, Solar Energy Fundamentals and Applications. New Delhi, India: Tata McGraw-Hill Publishing Company, 2009.

Kipp & Zonen: Solar Radiation Measurement. (accessed 10.02.2017).

Secon Controls. (accessed 22.02.2017).

Z-6000 series – Flutrol, Nitto Instruments Co., Ltd Japan. (accessed 04.03.2017).

Digital Thermometer at Thomas Scientific. http:// (accessed 15.03.2017).

J. A. Duffie and W. A. Beckman, Solar Energy of Thermal Processes. New York, USA: John Wiley and Sons Inc., 2006.

S. P. Sukhatme and J. K. Nayak, Solar Energy, Principles of Thermal Collection and Storage. New Delhi, India: Tata McGraw-Hill Publishing Company, 2008.

P. Sivakumar, W. Christraj, M. Sridharan and N. Jayamalathi, Performance improvements study of solar water heating system, ARPN Journal of Engineering and Applied Sciences, 7(1), 2012, 45-49.

G. D. Rai, Solar Energy Utilization. India: Khanna Publishers, 2005.

S. A. Kalogirou, Solar thermal collectors and applications, Progress in Energy and Combustion Science, 30, 2004, 131-295.

T. T. Chow, J. Ji and W. He, Photovoltaic thermal collector system for domestic application, Proceedings of Solar Word Congress ISEC2005, Orlando, USA, 2005, 471-476.

B. J. Huang, T. H. Lin, W. C. Hung and F. S. Sun, Performance evaluation of solar photovoltaic/thermal systems, Solar Energy, 70(5), 2001, 443–448.

Y. Tripanagnostopoulos, T. Nousia, M. Souliotis, and P.Yianoulis, Hybrid photovoltaic/thermal solar systems, Solar Energy, 72, 2002, 217-234.

I. Santos-Gonzáleza, M. Sandoval-Reyesa, O. García-Valladaresb, N. Ortegab and V. H. Gómezb, Design and evaluation of a compound parabolic concentrator for heat generation of thermal processes, Energy Procedia, 57, 2014, 2956 – 2965.

A. M. Hamood and A. J. N. Khalifa, Experimental study on the performance of a prism-shaped integrated collector-storage solar water heater, International Journal of Engineering and Environment, 3(3), 2012, 347-358.


  • There are currently no refbacks.