Optimization Of The Flow Distribution In V-Groove Flat Plate Solar Collector using Cfd Simulation
Ali Omer1, Hiram Ndiritu2, Stephen Wanjii3

1Ali Omer*, (PAUSTI). Nairobi, Kenya.
2Dr. Hiram Ndiritu, Principal, CollTec, JKUAT, Nairobi, Kenya.
3Dr. Stephen Wanjii, department of mechanical engineering, JKUAT, Nairobi, Kenya.

Manuscript received on 11 August 2019. | Revised Manuscript received on 17 August 2019. | Manuscript published on 30 September 2019. | PP: 4177-4182 | Volume-8 Issue-3 September 2019 | Retrieval Number: C5472098319/2019©BEIESP | DOI: 10.35940/ijrte.C5472.098319
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© The Authors. Blue Eyes Intelligence Engineering and Sciences Publication (BEIESP). This is an open access article under the CC-BY-NC-ND license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/)

Abstract: Flat plate solar collector is the major component of a solar heating system that converts solar radiation to thermal energy. It provides clean energy at no operating cost, however, its poor performance constitutes a serious drawback to adopt it for small application. This inefficiency is the result of involved thermal losses and the lack of full exploitation of the available energy. To exploit the maximum potential, the working fluid flow should be uniformly distributed through the collector to extract the heat from the hot absorbing surface. This study addresses the uniformity of the flow distribution for v-groove flat plate solar collector for water heating to optimize the performance of the collector. The study investigated the effect of the manifold geometry and the number of the side riser channels on the flow distribution by using numerical computational fluid dynamics simulation on Ansys Fluent Software. The mass flow rate was optimized for maximum thermal performance and then the optimum point was used for investigating the flow distribution. The simulation was validated against experimental data from literature with 99% confidence. The study found that the circular manifold gives uniform flow distribution with a standard deviation of 5% at the optimum mass flow rate of 11.5g/s. the study concluded that the tapered circular manifold is the optimum geometry for uniform flow distribution as it provides the least pressure difference inside the manifold.
Keywords: Flat Plate Collector; Flow Distribution; Optimization; Computational Fluid Dynamics;

Scope of the Article:
Design Optimization of Structures