Analysis of heat transfer in solar collectors with heat-pipe absorbers is compared to that for collectors with flow-through absorbers for systems that produce hot water or other heated fluids. In these applications the heat-pipe absorber suffers a heat transfer penalty compared with the flow-through absorber, but in many cases the penalty can be minimized by proper design at the heat-pipe condenser and system manifold. When the solar collector is used to drive an absorption chiller, the heat-pipe absorber has better heat transfer characteristics than the flow-through absorber.

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