To be able to predict accurately the performance of a specific solar collector in a given environment, its performance must first be characterized over the range of conditions under which the collector is expected to operate. In the present paper, collector performance models are developed for parabolic trough and compound-parabolic type concentrating collectors. Experimental collector performance data from Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, New Mexico and Wyle Laboratories, Huntsville, Alabama are used in a multiple linear regression analysis to identify significant independent variables and refine the collector performance models. The refined collector performance models are used to characterize performance of three different parabolic trough collectors and two different compound-parabolic collectors, with good correlations between modeled and experimental performance.

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