Design of vacuum thermal insulation fitting in solar heating applications
Keywords:vacuum thermal insulation fitting, solar heating applications, solar energy
AbstractThe presented paper deals with designs of the vacuum thermal insulation fitting in solar heating applications. Fitting designs, identified by the authors of this paper, reflects the construction problem of a flat vacuum solar collector caused by the conduction of heat gained with solar collectors to the collector casing through thermal conductive connection located across the interface between casing and outer piping. As this heat further leaks into the surrounding environment, heat losses of the solar collector is higher and therefore thermal performance of the whole solar system is reduced. The solar collector element in the form of a vacuum thermal insulation fitting allows a connection of the solar collector with outer hydraulic circuit of the solar system without creating thermal bridges while ensuring vacuum tightness of the collector casing. A part in the evaluation process of the proposed design was a vacuum thermal insulation fitting modelled in CAD environment followed by heat transfer analysis under several operation scenarios (normal operation, extreme operation, etc.). Subsequently, a functional prototype was manufactured for measurements and verifications of the desired characteristics of fitting under different operating conditions. All the results of measurements and simulations demonstrated not only the ability of fitting to ensure vacuum tightness of the solar collector but also the ability of reducing overheating of the collector casing as well.
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