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Analysis of Solar Two Heliostat Tracking Error Sources

Description: This paper explores the geometrical errors that reduce heliostat tracking accuracy at Solar Two. The basic heliostat control architecture is described. Then, the three dominant error sources are described and their effect on heliostat tracking is visually illustrated. The strategy currently used to minimize, but not truly correct, these error sources is also shown. Finally, a novel approach to minimizing error is presented.
Date: January 28, 1999
Creator: Jones, S.A. & Stone, K.W.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Heliostat cost reduction study.

Description: Power towers are capable of producing solar-generated electricity and hydrogen on a large scale. Heliostats are the most important cost element of a solar power tower plant. Since they constitute {approx} 50% of the capital cost of the plant it is important to reduce heliostat cost as much as possible to improve the economic performance of power towers. In this study we evaluate current heliostat technology and estimate a price of $126/m{sup 2} given year-2006 materials and labor costs for a deployment of {approx}600 MW of power towers per year. This 2006 price yields electricity at $0.067/kWh and hydrogen at $3.20/kg. We propose research and development that should ultimately lead to a price as low as $90/m{sup 2}, which equates to $0.056/kWh and $2.75/kg H{sup 2}. Approximately 30 heliostat and manufacturing experts from the United States, Europe, and Australia contributed to the content of this report during two separate workshops conducted at the National Solar Thermal Test Facility.
Date: June 1, 2007
Creator: Jones, Scott A.; Lumia, Ronald. (University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM); Davenport, Roger (Science Applications International Corporation, San Diego, CA); Thomas, Robert C. (Advanced Thermal Systems, Centennial, CO); Gorman, David (Advanced Thermal Systems, Larkspur, CO); Kolb, Gregory J. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Analysis of Strategies to Improve Heliostat Tracking at Solar Two

Description: This paper investigates dhlerent strategies that can be used to improve the tracking accuracy of heliostats at Solar Two. The different strategies are analyzed using a geometrical error model to determine their performance over the course of a day. By using the performance of heliostats in representative locations of the field aad on representative days of the year, an estimate of the annual performance of each strategy is presented.
Date: January 14, 1999
Creator: Jones, S. A. & Stone, K. W.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Single, stretched membrane, structural module experiments

Description: This report describes tests done on stretched-membrane heliostats used to reflect solar radiation onto a central receiver. The tests were used to validate prior analysis and mathematical models developed to describe module performance. The modules tested were three meters in diameter and had reflective polymer film laminated to the membrane. The frames were supported at three points equally spaced around the ring. Three modules were pneumatically attached with their weight suspended at the bottom support, two were pneumatically attached with their weight suspended from the upper mounts, and one was rigidly attached with its weight suspended at the bottom mount. By varying the membrane tension we could simulate a uniform wind loading normal to the mirror's surface. A video camera 15+ meters away from the mirror recorded the virtual image of a target grid as reflected by the mirrors' surface. The image was digitized and stored on a microcomputer. Using the law of reflection and analytic geometry, we computed the surface slopes of a sampling of points on the surface. The dominant module response was consistent with prior SERI analyses. The simple analytical model is quite adequate for designing and sizing single-membrane modules if the initial imperfections and their amplification are appropriately controlled. To avoid potential problems resulting from the fundamentally n = 2 deformation phenomena, we advise using either relatively stiffer ring frames or more than three support points.
Date: February 1, 1986
Creator: Wood, R.L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Receiver System: Lessons Learned From Solar Two

Description: The Boeing Company fabricated the Solar Two receiver as a subcontractor for the Solar Two project. The receiver absorbed sunlight reflected from the heliostat field. A molten-nitrate-salt heat transfer fluid was pumped from a storage tank at grade level, heated from 290 to 565 C by the receiver mounted on top of a tower, then flowed back down into another storage tank. To make electricity, the hot salt was pumped through a steam generator to produce steam that powered a conventional Rankine steam turbine/generator. This evaluation identifies the most significant Solar Two receiver system lessons learned from the Mechanical Design, Instrumentation and Control, Panel Fabrication, Site Construction, Receiver System Operation, and Management from the perspective of the receiver designer/manufacturer. The lessons learned on the receiver system described here consist of two parts: the Problem and one or more identified Solutions. The appendix summarizes an inspection of the advanced receiver panel developed by Boeing that was installed and operated in the Solar Two receiver.
Date: March 1, 2002
Creator: LITWIN, ROBERT Z. & PACHECO, JAMES E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Heliostat Manufacturing for Near-Term Markets: Phase II Final Report

Description: This report describes a project by Science Applications International Corporation and its subcontractors Boeing/Rocketdyne and Bechtel Corp. to develop manufacturing technology for production of SAIC stretched membrane heliostats. The project consists of three phases, of which two are complete. This first phase had as its goals to identify and complete a detailed evaluation of manufacturing technology, process changes, and design enhancements to be pursued for near-term heliostat markets. In the second phase, the design of the SAIC stretched membrane heliostat was refined, manufacturing tooling for mirror facet and structural component fabrication was implemented, and four proof-of-concept/test heliostats were produced and installed in three locations. The proposed plan for Phase III calls for improvements in production tooling to enhance product quality and prepare increased production capacity. This project is part of the U.S. Department of Energy's Solar Manufacturing Technology Program (SolMaT).
Date: December 21, 1998
Creator: Energy Products Division: Science Applications International Corporation: Golden, Colorado
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Operational experience and evaluation of a dual-element stretched-membrane heliostat

Description: A dual-element, stretched-membrane central receiver heliostat was designed and manufactured in 1989, by a private US company engaged in the development of commercial central receiver solar technology. The two-module collector, with a collection area of 97.5 m{sup 2}, extends stretched-membrane mirror technology on several fronts with face-down stow capability and a digital controller that integrates tracking and focusing control on a single programmable control board. The solar collector was installed at Sandia`s National Solar Thermal Test Facility in Albuquerque, New Mexico and evaluated over a three-and-a-half year period which ended in September 1993. The measured performance and the operational and maintenance characteristics of this commercial prototype are the subject of this report. The results of beam quality measurements, tracking repeatability tests, measurements of beam movement in elevated winds, performance tests of the focusing system, and all-day beam quality and tracking tests are presented, and the authors offer a detailed discussion of the knowledge gained through operation and maintenance and of the improvements made or suggested to the heliostat`s design.
Date: January 1, 1994
Creator: Strachan, J.W. & Van Der Geest, J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Annual performance prediction for off-axis aligned Lugo heliostats at Solar Two

Description: The DELSOL computer code was used to model the annual Performance for numerous off-axis alignments of the Lugo heliostats located at the Solar Two site in Dagget, California. Recommended canting times are presented for the Lugo heliostats based upon their location in the field. Predicted annual performance of an off-axis alignment was actually higher than for on-axis alignment in some cases, and approximately equal if the recommended times are used. The annual performances of Solar One heliostats located nearby were also calculated, and illustrated the poorer performance expected of the Lugo heliostats.
Date: February 1, 1996
Creator: Jones, S.A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

A comparison of on-axis and off-axis heliostat alignment strategies

Description: Heliostat installation and alignment costs will be an important element in future solar power tower projects. The predicted annual performances of on- and-off axis strategies are compared for 95 m{sup 2} flat-glass heliostats and an external, molten-salt receiver. Actual approaches to heliostat alignment that have been used in the past are briefly discussed, and relative strengths and limitations are noted. The optimal approach can vary with the application.
Date: March 1, 1996
Creator: Jones, S.A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Recent results on the optical performance of solar two heliostats

Description: Recent Sandia support of the Solar Two project has included the analysis of optical performance issues related to heliostat field improvements. Two types of heliostats will be used for the Solar Two project: The 1818 original 38.4 m{sup 2} Martin Marietta Co. heliostats, and 108 new 95 m{sup 2} Lugo heliostats. Carrisa Plains mirror modules will be used to construct the Lugo heliostats and refurbish original heliostats. Baseline, clean reflectivity measurements of 0.90 and 0.94 are recomended for the original heliostat and the Carrisa Plains modules, respectively. Sandia`s Beam Characterization System provided beam quality information for representative configurations of both heliostats. This showed that the replacement of two facets with Carrisa Plains modules on an original heliostat led to a slight increase in spillage, but also increased beam power. As expected, the large beam of the Lugo heliostat showed poorer beam quality and significant spillage, but proved to be an economical addition of reflective area. The Carrisa Plains modules were found to be nominally flat, although the focal length changed slightly with temperature. An analysis of the canting options for both types of heliostats was performed. It was recommended the original heliostats be canted with an on-axis, lookback method, whereas a two-step method using first on-, then off-axis approaches was recommended for the Lugo heliostats. Finally, measurements performed at the Daggett site showed that despite the 1992 Landers earthquake, heliostat pedestal tilt and the associated tracking errors are expected to be within acceptable limits.
Date: December 31, 1994
Creator: Jones, S. A.; Edgar, R. M. & Houser, R. M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The formation of optical membrane reflector surfaces using uniform pressure loading

Description: Potentially high quality optical reflector surfaces are attainable with the use of pressure formed membranes. Such reflector surfaces offer the prospect of very low weight and low cost. The formation of such surfaces, using initially flat circular membranes with uniform pressure loading, is studied in this paper. Finite axisymmetric deformations, along with both linear and nonlinear material response is considered. A wide range of focal-length-to-diameter ratios (above 0.6) are addressed and the structural/optical response mechanisms that lead to optical distortions relative to ideal parabolic reflector shapes are also considered. Results show that elastic material response can often lead to a significantly larger deviation from the ideal shape than will inelastic material response. This results primarily from the ability to limit stress nonuniformities when inelastic material response is operative. Furthermore, when under pressure loading the membrane focal length decreases monotonically with increasing radius for both linear and nonlinear material response. Further, the predicted focal length variation is increasingly nonlinear near the membrane support.
Date: August 1, 1987
Creator: Murphy, L.M. & Tuan, C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

OUT Success Stories: Power Towers

Description: Power towers convert the thermal energy of the sun to electricity. They are large-scale power plants producing clean energy and suited for operation in sunny, semi-arid regions of the world.
Date: August 31, 2000
Creator: Jones, J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Overview of Recent Results of the Solar Two Test and Evaluations Program

Description: The Solar Two project is a collaborative, cost-shared project between eleven US industry and utility partners and the U.S. Department of Energy to validate the molten-salt power tower technology. The Solar Two plant, located east of Barstow, CA, comprises 1926 heliostats, a receiver, a thermal storage system and a steam generator system that use molten nitrate salt as the heat transfer fluid and storage media. The steam generator powers a 10 MWe, conventional Rankine cycle turbine. This paper describes the test plan and evaluations currently in progress at Solar Two and provides some recent results.
Date: January 14, 1999
Creator: Gilbert, R. & Pacheco, J.E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Solar Power Tower Design Basis Document, Revision 0

Description: This report contains the design basis for a generic molten-salt solar power tower. A solar power tower uses a field of tracking mirrors (heliostats) that redirect sunlight on to a centrally located receiver mounted on top a tower, which absorbs the concentrated sunlight. Molten nitrate salt, pumped from a tank at ground level, absorbs the sunlight, heating it up to 565 C. The heated salt flows back to ground level into another tank where it is stored, then pumped through a steam generator to produce steam and make electricity. This report establishes a set of criteria upon which the next generation of solar power towers will be designed. The report contains detailed criteria for each of the major systems: Collector System, Receiver System, Thermal Storage System, Steam Generator System, Master Control System, and Electric Heat Tracing System. The Electric Power Generation System and Balance of Plant discussions are limited to interface requirements. This design basis builds on the extensive experience gained from the Solar Two project and includes potential design innovations that will improve reliability and lower technical risk. This design basis document is a living document and contains several areas that require trade-studies and design analysis to fully complete the design basis. Project- and site-specific conditions and requirements will also resolve open To Be Determined issues.
Date: July 1, 2001
Creator: ZAVOICO,ALEXIS B.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Summary of the Solar Two Test and Evaluation Program

Description: Solar Two was a collaborative, cost-shared project between eleven US industry and utility partners and the U. S. Department of Energy to validate molten-salt power tower technology. The Solar Two plant, located east of Barstow, CA, was comprised of 1926 heliostats, a receiver, a thermal storage system and a steam generation system. Molten nitrate salt was used as the heat transfer fluid and storage media. The steam generator powered a 10 MWe, conventional Rankine cycle turbine. Solar Two operated from June 1996 to April 1999. The major objective of the test and evaluation phase of the project was to validate the technical characteristics of a molten salt power tower. This paper describes the significant results from the test and evaluation activities.
Date: February 8, 2000
Creator: PACHECO,JAMES E.; REILLY,HUGH E.; KOLB,GREGORY J. & TYNER,CRAIG E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

National Solar Thermal Test Facility

Description: This is a brief report about a Sandia National Laboratory facility which can provide high-thermal flux for simulation of nuclear thermal flash, measurements of the effects of aerodynamic heating on radar transmission, etc
Date: December 1989
Creator: Cameron, C. P.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Wind loads on heliostats and parabolic dish collectors: Final subcontractor report

Description: A major intent of this study was to define wind load reduction factors for parabolic dish solar collectors within a field protected by upwind collectors, wind protective fences, or other blockages. This information will help researchers improve the economy of parabolic collector support structures and drive mechanisms. The method used in the study was to generalize wind load data obtained during tests on model collectors placed in a modeled atmospheric wind in a boundary-layer wind tunnel. A second objective of the study was to confirm and document a sensitivity in load to level of turbulence, or gustiness, in the approaching wind. A key finding was that wind-load reduction factors for forces (horizontal and vertical) were roughly similar to those for flat heliostats, with some forces significantly less than those for flat shapes. However, load reductions for moments showed a smaller load reduction, particularly for the azimuth moment. The lack of load reduction could be attributed to collector shape, but specific flow features responsible for and methods to induce a load reduction were not explored. 62 figs., 13 tabs.
Date: November 1, 1988
Creator: Peterka, J.A.; Tan, Z.; Bienkiewicz, B. & Cermak, J.E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Impact of Aerosols on Atmospheric Attenuation Loss in Central Receiver Systems: Preprint

Description: Atmospheric attenuation loss between the heliostat field and receiver has been recognized as a significant source of loss in Central Receiver Systems. In clear sky situations, extinction of Direct Normal Irradiance (DNI) is primarily by aerosols in the atmosphere. When aerosol loading is high close to the surface the attenuation loss between heliostat and receivers is significantly influenced by the amount of aerosols present on a particular day. This study relates measured DNI to aerosol optical depths close to the surface of the earth. The model developed in the paper uses only measured DNI to estimate the attenuation between heliostat and receiver in a central receiver system. The requirement that only a DNI measurement is available potentially makes the model a candidate for widespread use.
Date: August 1, 2011
Creator: Sengupta, M. & Wagner, M. J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Solar power tower development: Recent experiences

Description: Recent experiences with the 10 MW{sub e} Solar Two and the 2.5 MW{sub t} TSA (Technology Program Solar Air Receiver) demonstration plants are reported. The heat transfer fluids used in these solar power towers are molten-nitrate salt and atmospheric air, respectively. Lessons learned and suggested technology improvements for next-generation plants are categorized according to subsystem. The next steps to be taken in the commercialization process for each these new power plant technologies is also presented.
Date: December 1, 1996
Creator: Tyner, C.; Kolb, G. & Prairie, M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Solar two: A molten salt power tower demonstration

Description: A consortium of United States utility concerns led by the Southern California Edison Company (SCE) is conducting a cooperative project with the US Department of Energy (DOE), Sandia National Laboratories, and industry to convert the 10-MW Solar One Power Tower Pilot Plant to molten nitrate salt technology. The conversion involves installation of a new receiver, a new thermal storage system, and a new steam generator; it utilizes Solar One`s heliostat field and turbine generator. Successful operation of the converted plant, called Solar Two, will reduce economic risks in building initial commercial power tow projects and accelerate the commercial acceptance of this promising renewable energy technology. The estimated cost of Solar Two, including its three-year test period, is $48.5 million. The plant will begin operation in early 1996.
Date: August 1995
Creator: Tyner, C. E.; Sutherland, J. P. & Gould, W. R., Jr.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Final Test and Evaluation Results from the Solar Two Project

Description: Solar Two was a collaborative, cost-shared project between 11 U. S. industry and utility partners and the U. S. Department of Energy to validate molten-salt power tower technology. The Solar Two plant, located east of Barstow, CA, comprised 1926 heliostats, a receiver, a thermal storage system, a steam generation system, and steam-turbine power block. Molten nitrate salt was used as the heat transfer fluid and storage media. The steam generator powered a 10-MWe (megawatt electric), conventional Rankine cycle turbine. Solar Two operated from June 1996 to April 1999. The major objective of the test and evaluation phase of the project was to validate the technical characteristics of a molten salt power tower. This report describes the significant results from the test and evaluation activities, the operating experience of each major system, and overall plant performance. Tests were conducted to measure the power output (MW) of the each major system, the efficiencies of the heliostat, receiver, thermal storage, and electric power generation systems and the daily energy collected, daily thermal-to-electric conversion, and daily parasitic energy consumption. Also included are detailed test and evaluation reports.
Date: January 1, 2002
Creator: BRADSHAW, ROBERT W.; DAWSON, DANIEL B.; DE LA ROSA, WILFREDO; GILBERT, ROCKWELL; GOODS, STEVEN H.; HALE, MARY JANE et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Solar repowering workshop: a summary report

Description: The workshop was divided into two groups. Group A discussed key issues in the demand for solar thermal technologies; Group B discussed key issues in the supply of solar thermal technologies. Discussion questions prepared prior to the workshop are listed and the responses are summarized. The workshop agenda and the list of participants are included. (MHR)
Date: August 2, 1978
Creator: Nordman, D.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Cost of heliostats in low volume production

Description: This study indicates that in small volumes, heliostats can be produced at an installed cost of approximately 200 $/M/sup 2/ for a 49.053 m/sup 2/ heliostat. Initial one-time costs of $10 to $15 million would be required, although part of the one-time costs are recoverable. This study provides estimated costs of heliostats that are produced in a plant operating on a continuous basis for a period of four years at a production rate of 2,500 heliostats per year. This scenario was selected somewhat arbitrarily as a scenario that could lead to heliostat market of 5,000 to 10,000 units per year.
Date: January 1, 1980
Creator: Drumheller, K.; Williams, T. A.; Dilbeck, R. A. & Allison, G. S.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department