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Investigating the use of phase-change materials for temperature control during fast filling of hydrogen cylinders

Investigating the use of phase-change materials for temperature control during fast filling of hydrogen cylinders
Investigating the use of phase-change materials for temperature control during fast filling of hydrogen cylinders
This paper explores the use of phase-change materials in the process of fast filling of hydrogen cylinders in order to limit the rise in the gas temperature by enhancing heat transfer from the gas. It is necessary to limit the temperature rise because the structural performance of the cylinder materials can be degraded at higher temperatures. Initially, two computational approaches for modeling the fast filling of hydrogen cylinders are presented and validated; the first is an axisymmetric computational fluid dynamics simulation and the second is a single-zone approach with one-dimensional conjugate heat transfer through the cylinder walls. The models are applied to study fast filling of a hydrogen-powered passenger car. The predictions show that the minimum safe fill time for Type III cylinders with aluminum liners is generally shorter than for Type IV cylinders with plastic liners, for given ambient and precooling temperatures. Alternatively, Type III cylinders require less precooling for a given fill time. Introduction of a phase-change material heat sink is assessed as a means of reducing the fill time for Type IV cylinders. Paraffin-based phase-change materials are considered. The predictions show that the use of pure paraffin wax does not help in reducing the gas temperature due to its low thermal conductivity, however materials with improved thermal conductivity, for example, mixtures of paraffin wax and graphite, can facilitate reduced fill times. Without use of phase-change material it is not possible to reduce the fill time of Type IV cylinders below three minutes unless the gas supply is precooled. While the fill time can be reduced by precooling the gas supply, the phase-change material reduces the degree of precooling required for a given fill time by 10–20 K, and reduces the minimum theoretical power consumption of the cooler by 50–100%, depending on the ambient temperature.
1093-3611
73-97
Ramasamy, Vishagen
841e67b0-facb-4c09-a272-a266f768d533
Richardson, Edward S.
a8357516-e871-40d8-8a53-de7847aa2d08
Reed, Philippa
8b79d87f-3288-4167-bcfc-c1de4b93ce17
Hepples, Warren
2ef2a0f5-159e-4601-b48f-81d015fa9381
Wheeler, Andrew
0f243ba3-3aae-470c-ba4a-46a8c4b9197a
Ramasamy, Vishagen
841e67b0-facb-4c09-a272-a266f768d533
Richardson, Edward S.
a8357516-e871-40d8-8a53-de7847aa2d08
Reed, Philippa
8b79d87f-3288-4167-bcfc-c1de4b93ce17
Hepples, Warren
2ef2a0f5-159e-4601-b48f-81d015fa9381
Wheeler, Andrew
0f243ba3-3aae-470c-ba4a-46a8c4b9197a

Ramasamy, Vishagen, Richardson, Edward S., Reed, Philippa, Hepples, Warren and Wheeler, Andrew (2018) Investigating the use of phase-change materials for temperature control during fast filling of hydrogen cylinders. High Temperature Material Processes: An International Quarterly of High-Technology Plasma Processes, 22 (2-3), 73-97. (doi:10.1615/HighTempMatProc.2018024731).

Record type: Article

Abstract

This paper explores the use of phase-change materials in the process of fast filling of hydrogen cylinders in order to limit the rise in the gas temperature by enhancing heat transfer from the gas. It is necessary to limit the temperature rise because the structural performance of the cylinder materials can be degraded at higher temperatures. Initially, two computational approaches for modeling the fast filling of hydrogen cylinders are presented and validated; the first is an axisymmetric computational fluid dynamics simulation and the second is a single-zone approach with one-dimensional conjugate heat transfer through the cylinder walls. The models are applied to study fast filling of a hydrogen-powered passenger car. The predictions show that the minimum safe fill time for Type III cylinders with aluminum liners is generally shorter than for Type IV cylinders with plastic liners, for given ambient and precooling temperatures. Alternatively, Type III cylinders require less precooling for a given fill time. Introduction of a phase-change material heat sink is assessed as a means of reducing the fill time for Type IV cylinders. Paraffin-based phase-change materials are considered. The predictions show that the use of pure paraffin wax does not help in reducing the gas temperature due to its low thermal conductivity, however materials with improved thermal conductivity, for example, mixtures of paraffin wax and graphite, can facilitate reduced fill times. Without use of phase-change material it is not possible to reduce the fill time of Type IV cylinders below three minutes unless the gas supply is precooled. While the fill time can be reduced by precooling the gas supply, the phase-change material reduces the degree of precooling required for a given fill time by 10–20 K, and reduces the minimum theoretical power consumption of the cooler by 50–100%, depending on the ambient temperature.

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Accepted/In Press date: 1 August 2018
Published date: 2018

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 425384
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/425384
ISSN: 1093-3611
PURE UUID: 1040cfac-5e7b-46e4-b945-28a4868040b5
ORCID for Philippa Reed: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-2258-0347

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Date deposited: 17 Oct 2018 16:30
Last modified: 20 Jul 2019 01:21

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