Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 10 credits / 15 HE credits
The Absolicon Company in Härnösand have developed a solar collector field with high performance parabolic solar collectors to generate high temperature steam of around 160°C which could be directly used for industrial application. This project work involves thermal and optical performance evaluation of the collector field to check the collector performance.
The solar collector field is set up in Härnösand, Energy Park; the collector field consists of 8 parabolic solar collectors with a sun tracking mechanism. The sun tracking is provided by 4 different actuators. The parabolic collectors are imaging type and line focus. The heat transfer fluid is circulated through the collector circuit with the help of a variable flow pump, which varies its flow rate based on the solar irradiation values.
This project work includes, conducting the literature review and developing a test rig for testing of the collector field as per the EN12975 standards, 2006 (steady state testing) for solar collector testing. The thermal and optical performance evaluation of the collector field has to be evaluated along with the determination of the radiative, conductive and convective heat loss coefficients.
In the test work, the thermal performance is determined by measuring the heat energy gained by the heat transfer fluid (HTF) in the system on a clear sunny day at solar noon period. The heat loss coefficients are calculated by circulating a constant temperature HTF into the collector circuit as per the EN12975, (2006) standards and then curve tracing was done to obtain the value of heat loss coefficients. The peak optical efficiency was determined by testing the collector at solar noon period under steady state conditions as per the standards.
Matlab simulation analysis was also performed as a part of this project work to check the effect of changing incidence angle of solar radiation on the solar collector surface to determine the IAM for the collector field. Effects on the results were also determined due to the sensor errors and sensitivity analysis of the system was also performed.