A model has been developed to simulate the performance of a prototype solid particle receiver that was recently tested at Sandia National Laboratories. The model includes irradiation from the concentrated solar flux, two-band re-radiation and emission with the cavity, discrete-phase particle transport and heat transfer, gas-phase convection, wall conduction, and radiative and convective heat losses. Simulated temperatures of the particles and cavity walls were compared to measured values for nine on-sun tests. Results showed that the simulated temperature distributions and receiver efficiencies matched closely with trends in experimental data as a function of input power and particle mass flow rate. The average relative error between the simulated and measured efficiencies and increases in particle temperature was less than 10%. Simulations of particle velocities and concentrations as a function of position beneath the release point were also evaluated and compared to measured values collected during unheated tests with average relative errors of 6% and 8%, respectively. The calibrated model is being used in parametric analyses to better understand the impact and interactions of multiple parameters with a goal of optimizing the performance and efficiency of the solid particle receiver.

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