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Simulation and Performance Analysis of Solar Parabolic Trough Collector

M. Kusuma Kumari, P. Ravindra Kumar


The objective of the work is to analyse the utilization of the solar energy from the sun and for a parabolic concentrating collector. This technology is used for hot water production, process steam requirement, small capacity power generation and many more. Solar parabolic trough collector is a focusing type of collector and it is compared with flat plate non-focussing collector in terms of percentage improvement in collector efficiency for different atmospheric conditions with varied mass flow rates of fluids. Water and Therminol55 synthetic oil are the heat transfer fluids used in the experimental setup. Thermal performance of a solar parabolic trough collector (PTC) is investigated experimentally at varied flow rates of working fluids. The efficiency of the system and its variation with time of day is observed clearly from the experimental results. Performance of the system is evaluated by varying the mass flow rates for different operating conditions. From the data, it was observed that water gives the best results because the oil has high viscosity and low specific heat. ANSYS structural thermal analysis is carried out for the absorber tube to analyse the temperature distribution from inlet to outlet of the absorber tube. Comparison between experimental and simulation were made and found that outlet temperatures from the tube attain the same results.

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