Lasted edited by Andrew Munsey, updated on June 15, 2016 at 1:32 am.
Discussion page for Directory:Lateral Aperture Design
Directory:Solar > Directory:Concentrated Solar Power Directory:Lateral Aperture Design - "Think of a sheet of glass set out to capture the sunlight instead of letting the light pass through or reflecting it off somewhere, it captures the light inside the thickness of the pane. It then redirects it toward an edge, or a number of them, where it then emerges at a concentration ratio." (PESWiki July 23, 2008)
This would likely work best for lighting applications. I would be skeptical of its use for PV. Also, the ultimate criteria is cost - this looks complicated and expensive to manufacture. For something like this to be viable, it would have to be low cost.
On August 07, 2008, Charles Kurtz wrote:
This is apparently a case where looks are somewhat deceiving. Unlike the dichroic PVC system collector-concentrator panels which require apparently somewhat costly organic dye formulas and surface deposition techniques, the Lateral Aperture design is based on materials and straightforward manufacturing processes that were standard in the 1990s. The academic, business, and government research communities refer to dichroic technology as a novel, paradigm breaking innovation that leapfrogs conventional thinking, and are willing to commit millions of research dollars to it primarily because they already know that in spite of the costs associated with its manufacture it promises a cost effective approach when used with new generation high efficiency photo-voltaic cells. In that regards Lateral Aperture design based collector-concentrator panels would probably prove to be even more cost effective due to lower manufacturing costs and greater adaptability.
In addition, when factoring costs regarding concentrating systems, it must be remembered that the Lateral Aperture design has built in tracking capabilities. I have not kept up with the cost of tracking systems, but in the 90s the rule of thumb was 50% of construction costs and 80% of maintenance costs. That alone should make the design worth looking at but in this blase world of today apparently not. Maintenance costs would be further reduced from those associated with conventional concentrator systems due to the thin-form factor which provides a high level of immunity to wind damage not to mention being a selling point to those who like to keep technology out of sight.
Regarding complexity, it should be noted that the ability to successfully achieve multiple goals is more often an attribute of simple elegant designs rather than complex costly approaches, which more often than not signal a basic lack of innovative ability.
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