A Preliminary Field Test of a Natural Vacuum Solar Desalination Unit Using Hybrid Solar Collector
Setyawan, Eko Yohanes
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A natural vacuum solar desalination unit is studied experimentally. A lab scale natural vacuum desalination consists of evaporator and condenser as the main components are designed and fabricated. In order to transfer the heat from the solar collector into the evaporator a transfer fluid system using a pump powered by solar cell is employed. Thus, the solar collector is named as hybrid solar collector. The main objective here is to explore the characteristics of the main component and net efficiency of the system. The system is field tested by exposing the unit to solar irradiation on a top roof of a building in Medan city of Indonesia. The experiment was carried out from 8.00 to 16.00 local time. The results show that the natural vacuum solar desalination with hybrid solar collector can be operated perfectly. When the solar irradiation is relatively high, the desalination process occurs in the system. On the other hand, when the solar irradiation is relatively low, the evaporator will heat the solar collector and the desalination process is stopped. The net efficiency of the system is relatively low. It was 7.23%. It is suggested to provide further modification to improve the net efficiency of the system.