Research Papers

Techno-Economic Analysis of Solar Cooling Systems for Residential Buildings in Italy

[+] Author and Article Information
Salvatore Vasta

CNR-Istituto di Tecnologie Avanzate per
l'Energia “Nicola Giordano,”
Via Salita S. Lucia sopra Contesse 5,
Messina 98126, Italy
e-mail: salvatore.vasta@itae.cnr.it

Valeria Palomba

CNR-Istituto di Tecnologie Avanzate per
l'Energia “Nicola Giordano,”
Via Salita S. Lucia sopra Contesse 5,
Messina 98126, Italy;
Department of Engineering,
University of Messina,
c.da Di Dio,
Messina 98166, Italy
e-mail: valeria.palomba@itae.cnr.it

Andrea Frazzica

CNR-Istituto di Tecnologie Avanzate per
l'Energia “Nicola Giordano,”
Via Salita S. Lucia sopra Contesse 5,
Messina 98126, Italy
e-mail: andrea.frazzica@itae.cnr.it

Guido Di Bella

CNR-Istituto di Tecnologie Avanzate per
l'Energia “Nicola Giordano,”
Via Salita S. Lucia sopra Contesse 5,
Messina 98126, Italy
e-mail: guido.dibella@itae.cnr.it

Angelo Freni

CNR-Istituto di Tecnologie Avanzate per
l'Energia “Nicola Giordano,”
Via Salita S. Lucia sopra Contesse 5,
Messina 98126, Italy
e-mail: angelo.freni@itae.cnr.it

1Corresponding author.

Manuscript received December 23, 2014; final manuscript received February 10, 2016; published online March 9, 2016. Assoc. Editor: Werner Platzer.

J. Sol. Energy Eng 138(3), 031005 (Mar 09, 2016) (11 pages) Paper No: SOL-14-1396; doi: 10.1115/1.4032772 History: Received December 23, 2014; Revised February 10, 2016

Solar cooling systems might represent a viable alternative for space cooling in residential buildings because the peak of cooling demand matches the availability of solar radiation. The use of adsorption chillers in this field gives another environmental benefit, since they employ natural refrigerants as water. However, the design of such systems is critical because it relates to several parameters and cannot be easily accomplished using traditional tools. In this work, a dynamic model for the simulation of a small solar cooling system employing adsorption chillers has been evaluated. The model, realized with the commercial software trnsys, has been implemented to quantify the effect of different operational and design parameters on the overall performances of solar cooling systems in three different Italian cities (Milan, Rome, and Messina). Particular focus was put on the comparison of different heat rejection systems, which was found to be a critical aspect in the design of such systems. In addition, an economic analysis has been performed for an optimized system, in order to evaluate the payback time of the systems compared to a traditional air conditioning system and provide indication on the possible outlooks by means of a sensitivity analysis.

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Fig. 2

Sample layout of the modeled solar cooling system

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Fig. 1

The modeled apartment

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Fig. 3

System performance—dry cooler configuration, storage volume: 0.73 m3 and air flow rate: 2000 m3/hr

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Fig. 4

Chiller efficiency at increasing storage volume with 16 collectors, air flow rate: 2000 m3/hr, and chiller efficiency at increasing dry cooler air flow rate with 16 collectors, storage volume: 1 m3

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Fig. 5

System performance—wet tower configuration, storage volume: 0.73 m3

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Fig. 6

Chiller COP with increasing storage volume, solar field area: 25.72 m2

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Fig. 7

System performance—geothermal probes configuration, storage volume: 0.73 m3 and preheating years: 2

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Fig. 8

Chiller efficiency—geothermal probes configuration, solar collectors' area: 25.72 m2 and 2 yrs preheating

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Fig. 9

Comparison of the different systems for the city of Messina

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Fig. 10

Sensitivity analysis on solar cooling systems—payback time versus installation cost change

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Fig. 11

Sensitivity analysis on solar cooling systems—payback time versus electricity price change



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