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Fluids 2018, 3(3), 67; https://doi.org/10.3390/fluids3030067

Determining the Effect of Inlet Flow Conditions on the Thermal Efficiency of a Flat Plate Solar Collector

1
Energy 2050 Group, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Sheffield, Western Bank, Sheffield S10 2TN, UK
2
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Majmaah University, Al Majma’ah, 11952 Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
3
Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow G1 1XQ, UK
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 30 July 2018 / Revised: 7 September 2018 / Accepted: 12 September 2018 / Published: 17 September 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ventilation and Passive Cooling for Healthy and Comfortable Buildings)
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Abstract

The main objective of this study was to investigate the effect of inlet temperature (Tin) and flowrate ( m ˙ ) on thermal efficiency ( η t h ) of flat plate collectors (FPC). Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) was employed to simulate a FPC and the results were validated with experimental data from literature. The FPC was examined for high and low level flowrates and for inlet temperatures which varied from 298 to 373 K. Thermal efficiency of 93% and 65% was achieved at 298 K and 370 K inlet temperature’s respectively. A maximum temperature increase of 62 K in the inlet temperature was achieved at a flowrate of 5 × 10−4 kg/s inside the riser pipe. Tin and m ˙ were optimised in order to achieve the minimum required feed temperature for a 10 kW absorption chiller. View Full-Text
Keywords: CFD; solar collector; FPC; outlet water temperature; thermal efficiency; solar cooling; heat transfer CFD; solar collector; FPC; outlet water temperature; thermal efficiency; solar cooling; heat transfer
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Alobaid, M.; Hughes, B.; Heyes, A.; O’Connor, D. Determining the Effect of Inlet Flow Conditions on the Thermal Efficiency of a Flat Plate Solar Collector. Fluids 2018, 3, 67.

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