An Economic and Performance Evaluation of Parabolic Trough Component Improvements

[+] Author and Article Information
R. C. Gee, L. M. Murphy

Solar Energy Research Institute, Thermal Systems and Engineering Branch, Golden, Colo. 80401

J. Sol. Energy Eng 105(1), 10-18 (Feb 01, 1983) (9 pages) doi:10.1115/1.3266337 History: Received February 25, 1982; Online November 11, 2009


Improved parabolic trough concentrating collectors will result from better design, improved fabrication techniques, and the development and use of improved materials. This paper presents and implements an easily applied methodology that quantifies the performance potential of selected parabolic through component improvements from a systems viewpoint and uses performance data to determine the economic value of each improvement. Specifically considered are evacuated receivers, silvered glass reflectors, improved receiver selective coatings, higher optical accuracy concentrators, and higher transmittance receiver glazings. Upper-bound costs for each improvement are provided as are estimates of the increased solar energy system rates of return made possible by these improvements. The performance and economic potentials of some of these improvements are substantial, especially at higher collector operating temperatures.

Copyright © 1983 by ASME
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