Abstract

In this paper, the energy collection performance of north/south- and east–west-facing collector pairs, installed at optimized fixed and seasonally adjusted tilt angles, considering both portrait and landscape alignments, and setups with and without reflectors, were numerically compared with each other. For the purpose, a method based on a hybrid ray-tracing model was employed, as developed in this work. A case study, considering an installation site in Auckland (New Zealand), is presented. For this, the fixed and seasonally adjusted optimum tilt angles for the layouts were first obtained. Then, the yearly energy collection for the layouts was evaluated at fixed tilt angles. An hourly analysis was also performed to understand the behavior of these layouts in the morning, and at noon and evening. Then, the effects of seasonal adjustments were investigated for each layout. Finally, the layouts were ranked according to their performance. The north-facing landscape layout with reflectors showed the best performance, followed by its portrait alignment version. The east–west-facing portrait layout with reflectors ranked third. The east–west-facing layouts without reflectors were found to give the poorest performance.

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