A comprehensive model for analysis of real-time optical performance of a solar power tower with a multi-tube cavity receiver

Yu Qiu, Ya Ling He, Peiwen Li, Bao Cun Du

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

65 Scopus citations

Abstract

A comprehensive model and corresponding code named after SPTOPTIC for analysis of the real-time optical performance of a Solar Power Tower (SPT) with a Multi-Tube Cavity Receiver (MTCR) were developed using Monte Carlo Ray Tracing (MCRT) method. After validation, the model was used to study the optical performance of the DAHAN plant. The model-obtained results show that the solar flux in the MTCR exhibits a significant non-uniformity, showing a maximum flux of 5.141 × 105 W m−2 on the tubes. A comparison of the tracking models indicates that it is a good practice to treat the tracking errors as the random errors of the tracking angles when considering the random effect on the solar flux distribution. Study also indicates that multi-point aiming strategy of tracking helps homogenizing the flux and reducing the energy maldistribution among the tubes. Additionally, time-dependent optical efficiencies were investigated, and the yearly efficiency for the energy absorbed by the tubes was found to be 65.9%. At the end of the study, the cavity effect on the efficiency was revealed quantitatively, which indicates that the optical loss can be reduced significantly by the cavity effect, especially when the coating absorptivity is relatively low. It is concluded that the present model is reliable and suitable for predicting both the detailed real-time solar flux and the real-time efficiency of SPT.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)589-603
Number of pages15
JournalApplied Energy
Volume185
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2017

Keywords

  • Multi-point aiming strategy
  • Multi-tube cavity receiver
  • Optical model
  • Real-time efficiency
  • Real-time solar flux
  • Solar power tower

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Building and Construction
  • Energy(all)
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law

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