Hot mix asphalt (HMA) pavements are a potential source of extractable energy. Asphalt solar collectors (ASCs) have been designed and developed in the past as a means of extracting that energy. However, due to the variety of inefficiencies the potential for power generation has yet to be realized. This paper theoretically seeks to establish a better understanding of the performance and thermodynamic potential of the ASC. The ASC is compared to a solar water heater (SWH) through the use of (and modification to) the Hottel-Whillier-Bliss equation, a standard equation for the analysis of the SWH. Pipe spacing (W) plays a more significant role in affecting shape factor (S), Resistance Factor (FRes) and and the thermal and overall efficiency of the ASC. It was established that minimizing pipe spacing or addition of a spreader layer (SN values in the range of 1–5) helped improve the thermal and overall efficiencies. The efficiency of ASCs would be in the 1–5% range, but the use of conductive spreaders can help increase it to 10%. Through this comparative analysis, several design changes can be suggested in key areas to optimize the ASC for the maximization of efficiency.

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