Research Papers: Flows in Complex Systems

Studying Effects of Fence and Sheltering on the Aerodynamic Forces Experienced by Parabolic Trough Solar Collectors

[+] Author and Article Information
Zahra Baniamerian

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Tafresh University,
Tafresh 39518-79611, Iran
e-mail: amerian@tafreshu.ac.ir

Ramin Mehdipour

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Tafresh University,
Tafresh 39518-79611, Iran
e-mail: mehdipour@tafreshu.ac.ir

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Fluids Engineering Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF FLUIDS ENGINEERING. Manuscript received March 6, 2016; final manuscript received October 3, 2016; published online January 17, 2017. Assoc. Editor: Hui Hu.

J. Fluids Eng 139(3), 031103 (Jan 17, 2017) (11 pages) Paper No: FE-16-1142; doi: 10.1115/1.4034951 History: Received March 06, 2016; Revised October 03, 2016

Influences of proper fence installation around solar farms for decreasing aerodynamic factors due to wind force on parabolic trough collectors are comprehensively studied using two-dimensional computational fluid dynamics (CFD) model. Fences are treated as porous media to be investigated from the viewpoint of their influences on wind flow. The aerodynamic factors are calculated for the collectors in case of different fence types. Comprehensive discussions about the effects of types of employed fences and their distance from the first row collectors as well as collectors' slope angle on aerodynamic forces are also presented. Sheltering and fence effects are considered by an innovative modeling approach that is proposed in this study. It is shown that fence installation can considerably decrease aerodynamic factors. Effects of formed vortices behind collectors were significant and should be taken into consideration during the design. Brick-type fences are shown to behave poor while lace-type fences are advised.

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Fig. 1

Schematic of solar trough collectors with aerodynamic angles of wind (α and β for pitch and yaw angles, respectively)

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Fig. 2

Geometry and boundary conditions

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Fig. 3

Meshing around the collectors

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Fig. 6

Pressure drop of the brick fence against wind velocity

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Fig. 5

Modeling characteristics for defining porous media factors

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Fig. 12

Drag and lift variations with time for a single collector (α and β = 0)

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Fig. 7

Comparison between numerical study and experimental data acquired from wind tunnel tests on PTCs

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Fig. 8

Pressure distribution around (a) 0deg, (b) 60deg, and (c) 90deg angled collector (time-averaged results)

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Fig. 9

Velocity vectors in different time steps around the collector for inlet velocity of 15 m/s (α and β = 0)

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Fig. 10

Formed vortices around the collector at different angles of 0 deg, 45 deg, and 60 deg

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Fig. 11

Contours of axial velocity for collectors at angles of 0 deg, 45 deg, and 60 deg

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Fig. 13

Velocity distribution for the case of solitary fence

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Fig. 14

Pressure distribution around collectors: (a) applying solid wall, (b) applying porous wall as the barrier, and (c) for the nonenclosed solar farm (time-averaged results)



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