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Experimental performance assessment of a new flat-plate solar air collector having textile fabric as absorber using energy and exergy analyses

Ural, Tolga
Energy 2019 v.188
air, collectors, drying, energy costs, exergy, fabrics, heat, mass flow, solar radiation, temperature
This article is about experimental energy, exergy and economic analyses of a new solar air collector (SAC). It is then compared with the thermodynamic performance of the flat-plate solar air collector (FP-SAC). For this purpose, a new SAC is produced in which the air is passed through the textile fabric that is placed as a diagonal surface within the collector box. Both collectors are operated in the experimental setup for the same environment and test conditions and during the tests the data of temperature, mass flow and solar radiation are simultaneously recorded. The results of the study indicated that the energy and exergy efficiencies of FP-SAC were 53% and 31%, while TB-SAC was 70% and 41%, respectively. This result shows that the use of diagonally positioned textile fabrics always provides better performance in terms of both energy and exergy. The textile fabric increased the pressure losses in the collector. However, the exergy destruction of TB-SAC is lower compared to FP-SAC. The reason for this is that the collector air outlet temperature is higher than the other. The levelized cost of heating for TB-SAC in 0.042 US$/kWh is lower than that of FP-SAC in 0.059 US$/kWh. As a result, this study is expected to be a guiding study that promotes the use of textile fabrics in solar heating and drying applications and provides useful information on the subject.