Design of a Multiple-Lamp Large-Scale Solar Simulator

[+] Author and Article Information
S. P. Kenny

Solar Energy Applications Laboratory, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO

J. H. Davidson

Mechanical Engineering Department, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN 55455

J. Sol. Energy Eng 116(4), 200-205 (Nov 01, 1994) (6 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2930082 History: Received December 06, 1993; Revised June 30, 1994; Online June 06, 2008


A simple solution to the conflicting constraints of providing uniformity and collimation of irradiance in multiple-lamp solar simulators is proposed. As proof of concept, irradiance measurements obtained in a simulator comprised of 28 1-kW mercury-iodide gas discharge lamps and capable of irradiating a 1.22 m-by-2.44 m collector plane are given. The design is based on preventing a portion of the light from each bulb from reaching the collector plane. Light blockage is achieved by placing a “shadow board” 1.02 m from and parallel to the plane of the lamps. Lamps are arranged in an hexagonal pattern with 4 columns of 7 lamps at a lamp-to-lamp spacing and column-to-column spacing of 0.45 m. Lamp-to-collector plane distance is 3.05 m. The design is determined from measurements of the spatial distribution of radiant energy from a single lamp. Irradiance from an array of lamps is then simulated. Measurements of irradiance in the full-scale simulator confirm that uniformity and collimation conform to the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers’ standard. Average irradiance is 1080 W/m2 . Maximum irradiance is 1190 W/m2 and minimum irradiance is 980 W/m2 . Every point on the plane of the collector receives 100 percent of radiant energy from an area on the lamp array contained within a subtended angle of 20 deg.

Copyright © 1994 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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