This paper explores the interactions between micro-pin concentrated receiver designs with overall solar thermal energy system performance, with different operating conditions, working fluid, and required materials of construction. A 320 MW thermal plant coupled to a 160 MW electric sCO2 Brayton cycle is considered as the baseline. The circulating fluid enters the receiver at 550°C, and leaves at 720°C. The thermal storage/power block are located 150 m from the receiver at the base of the receiver tower. A resistance network based thermal and hydraulic model is used to predict heat transfer and pressure drop performance of the micro-pin receiver. This output of this model is coupled to a system level model of the pressure loss and compressor power required in the remainder of the high temperature gas loop. Overall performance is investigated for supercritical carbon dioxide and helium as working fluids, at pressures from 7.5 to 25 MPa, and at delivery temperatures of 720°C. The results show that by modifying pin depth and flow lengths, there are design spaces for micro-pin devices that can provide high thermal performance without significantly reducing the overall solar thermal system output at lower operating pressures. Use of lower pressure fluids enables lower cost materials of construction in the piping and distribution system, reducing the cost of electricity.

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