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Title: Verification of optical modelling of sunshape and surface slope error for concentrating solar power systems

Abstract

Sunshape and reflector surface slope error distributions are significant elements in modelling the optical behaviour of a concentrating solar power system. Different optical modelling tools implement these elements with various approaches. Discrepancies can easily accumulate in simulations of a large optical system as a result of incorrect implementations. This study reviews and verifies the implementations of these two factors in six tools that are widely used for optical modelling in solar energy research: Tonatiuh, SolTrace, Tracer, Solstice, Heliosim and SolarPILOT. The review incorporates three rounds of tests. Firstly, basic tests examine each factor carefully in simplified on-axis reflector-target configurations (round 'A'). Secondly, off-axis effects are introduced (round 'B'). Thirdly, full heliostat field simulations are verified (round 'C'). All of the test cases are simulated with each modelling tool, and results are compared. Discrepancies were observed due to approximations inherent in the cone optics (convolution) methods, incorrect implementation the of pillbox slope errors, different approaches to setting the circumsolar ratio for the Buie sunshape, and different approaches to the calculation of blocking and shading losses in some tools. All issues are discussed fully, and solutions to most issues were implemented within the scope of the present study. Some remaining issues aremore » noted. The study highlights the importance of careful implementation of these aspects of optical modelling and contributes to an improvement in the quality of several widely-used tools.« less

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1];  [2];  [1];  [2]; ORCiD logo [3]; ORCiD logo [4];  [5];  [6];  [2];  [1]
  1. Australian National Univ., Canberra, ACT (Australia)
  2. Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO), Newcastle, NSW (Australia)
  3. National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
  4. Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS), Font-Romeu-Odeillo (France). Processes, Materials and Solar Energy Lab. (PROMES)
  5. Méso-Star, Toulouse (France)
  6. Cyprus Inst., Nicosia, Cyprus. Energy, Environment and Water Research Center (EEWRC)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE)
OSTI Identifier:
1580493
Report Number(s):
NREL/JA-5500-75694
Journal ID: ISSN 0038-092X
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC36-08GO28308
Resource Type:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Solar Energy
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 195; Journal Issue: C; Journal ID: ISSN 0038-092X
Publisher:
Elsevier
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
14 SOLAR ENERGY; 47 OTHER INSTRUMENTATION; optical modelling; verification; Sunshape; surface slope error; Monte Carlo ray tracing; cone optics

Citation Formats

Wang, Ye, Potter, Daniel, Asselineau, Charles-Alexis, Corsi, Clotilde, Wagner, Michael, Caliot, Cyril, Piaud, Benjamin, Blanco, Manuel, Kim, Jin-Soo, and Pye, John. Verification of optical modelling of sunshape and surface slope error for concentrating solar power systems. United States: N. p., 2019. Web. doi:10.1016/j.solener.2019.11.035.
Wang, Ye, Potter, Daniel, Asselineau, Charles-Alexis, Corsi, Clotilde, Wagner, Michael, Caliot, Cyril, Piaud, Benjamin, Blanco, Manuel, Kim, Jin-Soo, & Pye, John. Verification of optical modelling of sunshape and surface slope error for concentrating solar power systems. United States. doi:10.1016/j.solener.2019.11.035.
Wang, Ye, Potter, Daniel, Asselineau, Charles-Alexis, Corsi, Clotilde, Wagner, Michael, Caliot, Cyril, Piaud, Benjamin, Blanco, Manuel, Kim, Jin-Soo, and Pye, John. Fri . "Verification of optical modelling of sunshape and surface slope error for concentrating solar power systems". United States. doi:10.1016/j.solener.2019.11.035. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1580493.
@article{osti_1580493,
title = {Verification of optical modelling of sunshape and surface slope error for concentrating solar power systems},
author = {Wang, Ye and Potter, Daniel and Asselineau, Charles-Alexis and Corsi, Clotilde and Wagner, Michael and Caliot, Cyril and Piaud, Benjamin and Blanco, Manuel and Kim, Jin-Soo and Pye, John},
abstractNote = {Sunshape and reflector surface slope error distributions are significant elements in modelling the optical behaviour of a concentrating solar power system. Different optical modelling tools implement these elements with various approaches. Discrepancies can easily accumulate in simulations of a large optical system as a result of incorrect implementations. This study reviews and verifies the implementations of these two factors in six tools that are widely used for optical modelling in solar energy research: Tonatiuh, SolTrace, Tracer, Solstice, Heliosim and SolarPILOT. The review incorporates three rounds of tests. Firstly, basic tests examine each factor carefully in simplified on-axis reflector-target configurations (round 'A'). Secondly, off-axis effects are introduced (round 'B'). Thirdly, full heliostat field simulations are verified (round 'C'). All of the test cases are simulated with each modelling tool, and results are compared. Discrepancies were observed due to approximations inherent in the cone optics (convolution) methods, incorrect implementation the of pillbox slope errors, different approaches to setting the circumsolar ratio for the Buie sunshape, and different approaches to the calculation of blocking and shading losses in some tools. All issues are discussed fully, and solutions to most issues were implemented within the scope of the present study. Some remaining issues are noted. The study highlights the importance of careful implementation of these aspects of optical modelling and contributes to an improvement in the quality of several widely-used tools.},
doi = {10.1016/j.solener.2019.11.035},
journal = {Solar Energy},
number = C,
volume = 195,
place = {United States},
year = {2019},
month = {11}
}

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