This paper describes a theoretical and experimental study of two-dimensional, buoyancy-driven flow in a rectangular porous cavity with one permeable endwall. Connected to a constant temperature tank, the permeable end allows for natural recharge and discharge of the saturating fluid. The other vertical endwall is impermeable and maintained at a constant but higher temperature, thus inducing a buoyancy-driven flow. The theoretical study includes an asymptotic analysis developed for a shallow cavity with one permeable endwall and the numerical solutions of the power-law difference representation of the full governing equations. The experimental system consists of water-saturated glass beads packed in a rectangular cavity with a length-to-height aspect ratio of 3.17, for which the Rayleigh number can vary up to 120. Measurements were made of the steady-state temperature distribution in the cavity and the heat transfer rate from the impermeable endwall. It is shown that the constant pressure and temperature assumptions at the permeable wall, as employed in the theoretical analysis, satisfactorily predict the experimental data. Results are also compared with those existing in the literature.

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