Date of Award


Document Type

Master's Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MS)

College, School or Department Name

Department of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics


Amitabh Narain


This thesis develops an effective modeling and simulation procedure for a specific thermal energy storage system commonly used and recommended for various applications (such as an auxiliary energy storage system for solar heating based Rankine cycle power plant). This thermal energy storage system transfers heat from a hot fluid (termed as heat transfer fluid - HTF) flowing in a tube to the surrounding phase change material (PCM). Through unsteady melting or freezing process, the PCM absorbs or releases thermal energy in the form of latent heat. Both scientific and engineering information is obtained by the proposed first-principle based modeling and simulation procedure. On the scientific side, the approach accurately tracks the moving melt-front (modeled as a sharp liquid-solid interface) and provides all necessary information about the time-varying heat-flow rates, temperature profiles, stored thermal energy, etc. On the engineering side, the proposed approach is unique in its ability to accurately solve – both individually and collectively – all the conjugate unsteady heat transfer problems for each of the components of the thermal storage system. This yields critical system level information on the various time-varying effectiveness and efficiency parameters for the thermal storage system.