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Optical performance comparison between heliostat field generation algorithms

: Les, I.; Mutuberria, A.; Schöttl, P.; Nitz, P.; Leonardi, E.; Pisani, L.


Mancilla, Rodrigo (Ed.) ; American Institute of Physics -AIP-, New York:
23rd SolarPACES 2017, International Conference on Concentrating Solar Power and Chemical Energy Systems. Proceedings : 26-29 September 2017, Santiago, Chile
Woodbury, N.Y.: AIP, 2018 (AIP Conference Proceedings 2033)
ISBN: 978-0-7354-1757-1
Art. 040020, 10 pp.
International Conference on Concentrating Solar Power and Chemical Energy Systems (SolarPACES) <23, 2017, Santiago>
Conference Paper
Fraunhofer ISE ()

This paper summarizes the collaborative work done by CENER, Fraunhofer ISE and CRS4 within the scope of the STAGE-STE project related to heliostat field generation algorithms and their application to small heliostats (<10 m2). Radially staggered heliostat field layouts have been commonly applied to real solar fields with known results. However, their use in conjunction with small heliostats or the use of brand new ways for heliostat allocation, such natural pattern based algorithms, is still unknown. Herein, the most promising heliostat field generation algorithms are studied and compared, in annual optical efficiency terms, for different scenarios. These efficiencies correspond to the best heliostat layouts found by the optimization process that each generation algorithm can create, for three scenarios. Results show that the fields from the selected algorithms lead to similar optical efficiencies. The slight differences are not enough evidence to nominate one of the algorithms as the best choice, taking into account the inherent error of the simulation tools, the optimization process and further requirements needed in commercial applications (e.g. access paths) not coped in this study.