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Entropy 2014, 16(5), 2549-2567; doi:10.3390/e16052549
Article

Exergy Analysis of Flat Plate Solar Collectors

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Received: 19 November 2013 / Revised: 1 April 2014 / Accepted: 5 May 2014 / Published: 9 May 2014
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Abstract

This study proposes the concept of the local heat loss coefficient and examines the calculation method for the average heat loss coefficient and the average absorber plate temperature. It also presents an exergy analysis model of flat plate collectors, considering non-uniformity in temperature distribution along the absorber plate. The computation results agree well with experimental data. The effects of ambient temperature, solar irradiance, fluid inlet temperature, and fluid mass flow rate on useful heat rate, useful exergy rate, and exergy loss rate are examined. An optimal fluid inlet temperature exists for obtaining the maximum useful exergy rate. The calculated optimal fluid inlet temperature is 69 °C, and the maximum useful exergy rate is 101.6 W. Exergy rate distribution is analyzed when ambient temperature, solar irradiance, fluid mass flow rate, and fluid inlet temperature are set to 20 °C, 800 W/m2, 0.05 kg/s, and 50 °C, respectively. The exergy efficiency is 5.96%, and the largest exergy loss is caused by the temperature difference between the absorber plate surface and the sun, accounting for 72.86% of the total exergy rate.
Keywords: flat plate collector; heat loss coefficient; exergy; exergy loss flat plate collector; heat loss coefficient; exergy; exergy loss
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Ge, Z.; Wang, H.; Wang, H.; Zhang, S.; Guan, X. Exergy Analysis of Flat Plate Solar Collectors. Entropy 2014, 16, 2549-2567.

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