Date: February 1986
Creator: Hull, John R.; Schertz, William W. & Allen, John W.
Description: Heat transfer in evacuated-tube solar collectors with heat-pipe absorbers is compared with that for similar collectors with flow-through absorbers. In systems that produce hot water or other heated fluids, the heat-pipe absorber suffers a heat transfer penalty compared with the flow-through absorber, but in many cases the penalty can be minimized by proper design at the heat-pipe condenser and system manifold. The heat transfer penalty decreases with decreasing collector heat loss coefficient, suggesting that evacuated tubes with optical concentration are more appropriate for use with heat pipes than evacuated or non-evacuated flat-plate collectors. When the solar collector is used to drive an absorption chiller, the heat-pipe absorber has better heat transfer characteristics than the flow-through absorbers.
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