Author Topic: stagged spiral heliostat field arrays  (Read 457 times)

Jim Richards

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stagged spiral heliostat field arrays
« on: May 13, 2016, 06:53:30 AM »
I'm interested in the math of stagged spiral heliostat field arrays so I can study the energy when scaling down from grid-scale to home-scale. I mocked-up in sketch-up (pic attached), a stagged spiral heliostat field array using the “sunflower” observation and I suppose I could reverse engineer the math, but I thought I'd see if anyone knew of any published math first.

Any help would be appreciated.

Curbie


Gabriel

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Re: stagged spiral heliostat field arrays
« Reply #1 on: May 15, 2016, 05:48:37 PM »
Hi Jim,

I remember someone sent me an article on this a good while back, but it never had the math with it. It seems like it should be published somewhere, but I don't know where. It might be on one of those research sites where you have to pay for the article or something similar.

It would definitely be nice to have the math on hand though.

This is an old program they I had started working on which (among other things) lets you generate an array of heliostats and calculates how much energy they will collect based on real world solar radiation data. http://cerebralmeltdown.com/forum/index.php?topic=361.0 I actually wanted to do what you mentioned with this program, but never really needed it for my purposes so it never got done.

This program could sort of be used to check if one array is more efficient then the other, but the problem with it is that it doesn't take into account when one heliostat shades another.

Generating the "sunflower" shape might not be that bad, but checking to see if it is actually better than other shapes is no easy task. It would be worth doing though I think. Maybe someone out there already knows of something that would help with this?

Take Care and welcome to the forums!
Gabriel


Jim Richards

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Re: stagged spiral heliostat field arrays
« Reply #2 on: May 16, 2016, 01:57:41 AM »
Gabriel,

Thanks for the reply, if the admin doesn't know, the topic hasn't been vetted here yet.  I like using “back of the napkin” math, if I can, to get a sense of viability of intended use before I spend real time with intensive math. I have Nrel's SolPos, PvWatts1, & TMY3 data, and have used them before to calculate seasonal kWh on shaded surfaces before for PBRs. (see attached, think Bio-solar collectors)

I can probably use the same shading math, but first would need to find relationships in the “sunflower” layout to reverse engineer math to describe it, so on to “sunflower” layout version 2, using the relationships I churned up laying out version one (last post).

Thanks, and good luck with the web-site and your projects.

Curbie