Absorbers

Absorbers


The absorber collects solar energy. There are two types of absorbers: FourFold™ absorber and Microgrid absorber. Regardless of the absorber type, four mirrors reflect sunlight onto the absorber’s active region.


FourFold™ Absorber


The FourFold™ absorber has a narrow strip of photovoltaic cells as its active region. It converts about 18% of the sun's energy to electricity. These cells would get too hot to be efficient if they weren’t cooled. The cells are bonded onto a metal tube which carries water-based coolant through the absorber, cooling the cells and heating the coolant. The FourFold™ absorber converts sunlight to electricity by the PV cells and to heat by the coolant.



For more information
  • Hybrid Solar pdf
  • Hybrid Economics pdf or
  • Hybrid Payback pdf


Microgrid Absorber


The Microgrid absorber has a black vacuum-jacketed pipe as its active region. This assembly absorbs about 75% of the sun's energy and converts the energy to heat. Since the vacuum jacket prevents heat loss from the pipe, it gets very hot. Mineral oil coolant pumped through the pipe also gets hot. The Microgrid absorber converts sunlight to hot mineral oil.

In both cases, gearmotors continuously rotate the mirrors to reflect sunlight onto the absorber's active region.
Read about gearmotors...