PETAL (Parabolic Energy Transformation and Astrophysics Laboratory) is a large multipurpose dish-shaped concentrator, located at Sede Boqer. Its 2-axis tracking paraboloidal surface, with aperture area in excess of is constructed from 216 adjustable mirror panels. The very large aperture and high concentration ratio of PETAL render the direct characterization of its optical performance a nontrivial task. We have applied a variety of methods in order to assess PETAL’s optical quality. These include imaging the full moon and Jupiter at night, and analysis of the 3-D caustic image produced by the scattering of focused sunlight off particles in the air. The main results of these studies, together with the preliminary results of measurements on 36 individual panels, are presented here. Among the three measurements that look at objects of the same angular size (i.e. the sun and moon), the average image size (i.e. radius of circle containing 90% of the intensity) is demonstrating a 5% spread about the mean for three different methods. This result is in agreement with 0.22 m for the Jupiter image. Successful application of these methods for characterization of PETAL proves their applicability to more commonly used solar dishes of smaller sizes but with similar or better concentration ratios.
Determining the Optical Properties of PETAL, the Parabolic Dish at Sede Boqer
Contributed by the Solar Energy Division of THE AMERICAN SOCIETY OF MECHANICAL ENGINEERS for publication in the ASME JOURNAL OF SOLAR ENERGY ENGINEERING. Manuscript received by the ASME Solar Division September 2003; final revision March 2004. Associate Editor: A. Kribus.
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Biryukov, S. (July 19, 2004). "Determining the Optical Properties of PETAL, the Parabolic Dish at Sede Boqer ." ASME. J. Sol. Energy Eng. August 2004; 126(3): 827–832. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.1756925
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