Inderscience Publishers

Performance of a solar drier with and without heat storage material for copra drying

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Courtesy of Inderscience Publishers

An indirect forced convection solar drier integrated with heat storage material was developed to test its performance for copra drying. The drier consists of a solar flat plate air heater integrated with a sensible heat storage unit, a drying chamber and a centrifugal blower. The experiments were carried out with and without the integration of heat storage materials. Sand mixed with aluminium scrap was used as a heat storage material in solar air heater. The moisture content (wet basis) of copra was reduced from about 52% to about 8% in 80 and 104 hour, respectively, for solar drier integrated with and without heat storage materials. The Specific Moisture Extraction Rate was estimated to be about 0.81 and 0.94 kg kW hour−1 for the solar air heater with and without heat storage materials, respectively. The average solar drier thermal efficiency was estimated to be about 23% in both the drying modes.

Keywords: copra drying, heat storage materials, solar dryers, specific moisture extraction rate, SMER, indirect forced convection, solar energy, solar power, sand, aluminium scrap, solar air heaters

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