Research Papers

Optical Performance and Weight Estimation of a Heliostat With Ganged Facets

[+] Author and Article Information
L. Amsbeck

German Aerospace Center (DLR), Institute of Technical Thermodynamics, Pfaffenwaldring 38-40, D-70569 Stuttgart, Germanylars.amsbeck@dlr.de

R. Buck, A. Pfahl, R. Uhlig

German Aerospace Center (DLR), Institute of Technical Thermodynamics, Pfaffenwaldring 38-40, D-70569 Stuttgart, Germany

J. Sol. Energy Eng 130(1), 011010 (Dec 28, 2007) (3 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2804630 History: Received October 27, 2006; Revised August 29, 2007; Published December 28, 2007

In standard heliostat design, the usual strategy of cost reduction is to increase the mirror area of the heliostats. This not only leads to a reduction of specific drive cost but also to an increase of the torques caused by the wind loads, resulting in higher specific weight and higher specific drive power. These drawbacks are avoided when small heliostats are coupled. At the torque tube heliostat (TTH), the mirrors are mounted on torque tubes to simplify the coupling mechanism for the elevation angle. Ray tracing calculations were done to obtain optimized heliostat configurations and to compare the energy yield of a heliostat field built of 288m2 TTHs with a conventional heliostat field. To get an idea of the weight reduction potential of the TTH, the dimensions of the torque tubes, the secondary axis tubes, and the mirror support structure were weight optimized via finite element method. The layout criterion was a mean mirror error of 2.5mrads under wind load and gravity.

Copyright © 2008 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Figure 1

TTH with ganged facets

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Figure 2

Reference heliostat field and positions of single optimized TTHs with surrounding field areas that they represent

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Figure 3

FE mesh of the TTH

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Figure 4

Mirror error distribution of the half TTH 24m torque tube with 1×2m2 mirrors (mrad)



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