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Energies 2016, 9(11), 864;

Control Optimization of Solar Thermally Driven Chillers

Research Center of Sustainable Energy Technology, Stuttgart University of Applied Sciences, Schellingstr. 24, 70174 Stuttgart, Germany
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Francesco Calise
Received: 3 August 2016 / Revised: 13 September 2016 / Accepted: 13 October 2016 / Published: 25 October 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Solar Cooling and Heating)
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Many installed solar thermally driven cooling systems suffer from high auxiliary electric energy consumption which makes them not more efficient than conventional compression cooling systems. A main reason for this is the use of non-efficient controls with constant set points that do not allow a chiller power modulation at partial-load and therefore lead to unnecessary high power consumption of the parasitics. The aims of this paper are to present a method to control efficiently solar thermally driven chillers, to demonstrate experimentally its applicability and to quantify the benefits. It has been shown that the cooling capacity of a diffusion absorption chiller can be modulated very effectively by adjusting both the temperature and the flow rate of the cooling water. With the developed approach and the use of optimization algorithms, both the temperature and the flow rate can be controlled simultaneously in a way that the cooling load is matched and the electricity consumption is minimized. Depending on the weather and operating conditions, electricity savings between 20% and 60% can be achieved compared to other tested control approaches. The highest savings are obtained when the chiller is operated at partial load. The presented method is not restricted to solar cooling systems and can also be applied to other conventional heating ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems. View Full-Text
Keywords: control strategy; solar cooling; heat rejection; optimization; absorption chiller control strategy; solar cooling; heat rejection; optimization; absorption chiller

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Dalibard, A.; Gürlich, D.; Schneider, D.; Eicker, U. Control Optimization of Solar Thermally Driven Chillers. Energies 2016, 9, 864.

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