Energy Efficient Two-Phase Cooling for Concentrated Photovoltaic Arrays
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Concentrated sunlight focused on the aperture of a photovoltaic solar cell, coupled with high efficiency, triple junction cells can produce much greater power densities than traditional 1 sun photovoltaic cells. However, the large concentration ratios will lead to very high cell temperatures if not efficiently cooled by a thermal management system. Two phase, flow boiling is an attractive cooling option for such CPV arrays. In this work, two phase flow boiling in mini/microchannels and micro pin fin arrays will be explored as a possible CPV cooling technique. The most energy efficient microchannel design is chosen based on a least-material, least-energy analysis. Heat transfer and pressure drop obtained in micro pin fins will be compared to data in the recent literature and new correlations for heat transfer coefficient and pressure drop will be presented. The work concludes with an energy efficiency comparison of micro pin fins with geometrically similar microchannel geometry.