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11 September 2007 Concentrator design to minimize LCOE
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Abstract
The Levelized Cost of Energy (LCOE) takes into account more than just the cost of power output. It encompasses product longevity, performance degradation and the costs associated with delivering energy to the grid tie point. Concentrator optical design is one of the key components to minimizing the LCOE, by affecting conversion efficiency, acceptance angle and the amount of energy concentrated on the receiver. Optical systems for concentrators, even those at high concentrations ( >350X) can be designed by straightforward techniques, and will operate under most circumstances. Adding requirements for generous acceptance angles, non-destructive off-axis operation, safety and high efficiency however, complicate the design. Furthermore, the demands of high volume manufacturing, efficient logistics, minimal field commissioning time and low cost lead to quite complicated, system level design trade-offs. The technology which we will discuss features an array of reflective optics, scaled to be fabricated by techniques used in the automotive industry. The design couples a two-element imaging system to a non-imaging total internal reflection tertiary in a very compact design, with generous tolerance margins. Several optical units are mounted in a housing, which protects the optics and assists with dissipating waste heat. This paper outlines the key elements in the design of SolFocus concentrator optics, and discusses tradeoffs and experience with various design approaches.
© (2007) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Mark McDonald, Steve Horne, and Gary Conley "Concentrator design to minimize LCOE", Proc. SPIE 6649, High and Low Concentration for Solar Electric Applications II, 66490B (11 September 2007); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.735738
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