1 Department of Buildings and Energy, Technical University of Denmark2 Department of Civil Engineering, Technical University of Denmark
Modelling of microclimate in collectors
It is important to avoid condensation in solar collectors, most of all because wetness of the absorber can damage the selective surface and cause corrosion on the absorber plate.During night time the cover of collectors will cool below ambient temperature due to thermal radiation to the cold sky. In climates where the air during night time becomes saturated with humidity (the relative humidity is 100%), condensation will form on the outside and inside of the collector glazing. If too much condensation takes place on the inside of the glazing, it will start to fall off on to the absorber surface.The intent of the present work is improvement of a existing computer model for calculation of microclimate data in collectors.Calculations with the model give insight in the humidity and temperature for artificial or realistic climatic data. This design tool makes it possible to calculate the effect of ventilation and insulation materials.Results from investigation of ventilation rates together with a model of the moisture inside the collector are built into the computer program. It has been found that modelling of the moisture transfer in backside insulation is essential to determine the humidity in the air gap of the collector.The objective is to develop guidelines for solar collector design to achieve the most favourable microclimate condition for materials. As a tool the computer model will be useful to fulfil this. Guidelines for collectors will be essential for manufactures to improve the long-term durability of solar collectors.