Document Type : Primary Research paper
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Nehru Institute of Technology, Kaliyapuram, Coimbatore 6411 05, Tamilnadu, India
Solar ponds combine solar energy collection with long-term storage and can provide reliable
thermal energy at temperature ranges from 50 to 90 0C. A solar pond consists of three main
zones. The first zone, which is located at the top of the pond and contains the less dense
saltwater mixture, is the absorption and transmission region, also known as the upper
convective zone (UCZ). The second zone is the gradient zone or non-convective zone (NCZ)
which contains a variation of saltwater densities increasing with depth. The last zone is the
storage zone or lower convective zone (LCZ),where density is uniform and near saturation.
The stability of a solar pond prototype was experimentally performed in a mild steel tank of
height 1.2m, width and length of 1m with black coating on the inner sides and the exteriors
were insulated with 0.2m of polystyrene sheets at the sides and bottom. The effects of the
solar-pond's depth and its water's salinity on the store's temperature distributions were
determined experimentally and compared with theoretical predictions.