CFD STUDY OF AN INNOVATIVE SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC THERMAL COLLECTOR (PVTC) FOR SIMULTANEOUS GENERATION OF ELECTRICITY AND HOT AIR

Sanjeet Kumar, Supreme Das, Agnimitra Biswas and Biplab Das

Keywords

Photovoltaic thermal collector (PVTC), baffle length, pitch length, electrical efficiency, thermal efficiency and overall efficiency

Abstract

The objective of the present study is to develop an innovative air-based photovoltaic thermal collector (PVTC) and perform a detailed thermal analysis of the same using Ansys Fluent CFD software to improve its efficiency. Rectangular baffles are attached on either side of the thermal absorber having air flow on its both sides. Two different design features of the baffles are considered – baffle length and pitch. The variations of useful heat gain, electrical efficiency, overall efficiency, and air outlet temperature are modelled for a characteristic solar day. It is shown that the present PVTC achieves the maximum overall efficiency of 44.44% for a baffle length of 44 mm and pitch of 60 mm. The flow physics is then investigated to understand the heat transfer augmentation between the baffles with different pitch lengths. Finally, usefulness of the PVTC is shown by comparing its performance with a few established designs of the literature.

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