Wind barriers optimization for minimizing collector mirror soiling in a parabolic trough collector plant

20 Jun 2018

Wind barriers, according to their sizes and shapes, can effectively control, shift and even modify the airflow field in their downstream. These structures can accelerate the wind flow over the mirror field and move the airborne particles away from the mirrors. For example, in concentrated solar power plants it is highly desirable to engineer the system in a way that fewer particles are deposited within the solar field, in particular, onto mirror surfaces. Therefore, design optimization of dust barriers could significantly impact the mirror soiling and favourably reduce the cleaning water consumption of a solar power plant. This study focuses on the optimization of a solid wind barrier around a parabolic trough collector plant for their protection against dust soiling. The presented simulation results show that an optimum solid wind barrier is able to direct large amount of particles (in this study, more than 86%) to pass over the solar field with very small fraction (around 0.8%) being deposited on the mirrors. In addition, it was found that the barrier wall is more effective in deflecting the larger particles from the solar field.