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Proceedings Paper

Tracking and shape errors measurement of concentrating heliostats
Author(s): Mathieu Coquand; Cyril Caliot; François Hénault
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Paper Abstract

In solar tower power plants, factors such as tracking accuracy, facets misalignment and surface shape errors of concentrating heliostats are of prime importance on the efficiency of the system. At industrial scale, one critical issue is the time and effort required to adjust the different mirrors of the faceted heliostats, which could take several months using current techniques. Thus, methods enabling quick adjustment of a field with a huge number of heliostats are essential for the rise of solar tower technology. In this communication is described a new method for heliostat characterization that makes use of four cameras located near the solar receiver and simultaneously recording images of the sun reflected by the optical surfaces. From knowledge of a measured sun profile, data processing of the acquired images allows reconstructing the slope and shape errors of the heliostats, including tracking and canting errors. The mathematical basis of this shape reconstruction process is explained comprehensively. Numerical simulations demonstrate that the measurement accuracy of this “backward-gazing method” is compliant with the requirements of solar concentrating optics. Finally, we present our first experimental results obtained at the THEMIS experimental solar tower plant in Targasonne, France.

Paper Details

Date Published: 7 September 2017
PDF: 17 pages
Proc. SPIE 10379, Nonimaging Optics: Efficient Design for Illumination and Solar Concentration XIV, 103790N (7 September 2017); doi: 10.1117/12.2272791
Show Author Affiliations
Mathieu Coquand, Processes, Materials and Solar Energy Lab., CNRS (France)
Cyril Caliot, Processes, Materials and Solar Energy Lab., CNRS (France)
François Hénault, Institut de Planétologie et d’Astrophysique de Grenoble, CNRS, Univ. Grenoble-Alpes (France)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 10379:
Nonimaging Optics: Efficient Design for Illumination and Solar Concentration XIV
Roland Winston; Sarah R. Kurtz, Editor(s)

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