Processing

Please wait...

Settings

Settings

Goto Application

1. WO1980000489 - SOLAR ENERGY CONVERSION SYSTEM

Note: Text based on automatic Optical Character Recognition processes. Please use the PDF version for legal matters

[ EN ]

WHAT IS CLAIMED IS:
1. A solar energy collector for converting radiant solar energy, characterized by:
an optical system focusing said radiant energy;
an optically closed, black body cavity containing a transparent or translucent working medium;
a transparent window, which is small in size
relative the size of said cavity, positioned on the wall of said cavity near the focal point of said optical
system, said window admitting radiant solar energy from said optical system into said cavity; and
said working medium directly absorbing said radiant solar energy entering said cavity at said window by
means of repeated transmission of said energy from the walls of said cavity through said working medium without a significant loss of energy from said cavity through transmission of energy from said cavity through said
window.
2. A solar energy collector as defined in Claim 1 further characterized by:
apparatus for adjusting the volume of said cavity which is illuminated by said radiant solar energy.
3. A solar energy collector as defined in Claim 2 further characterized by:
said volume adjusting apparatus is a partition
dividing said cavity, said partition being permeable to said working medium.
4. A solar energy collector as defined in Claim 1 wherein said working medium is a liquid, said apparatus further characterized by:
apparatus for pressurizing said working liquid
within said cavity to prevent vaporization thereof
during heating by said solar energy and to thereby
store energy in said working liquid.

5. A solar energy collector as defined in Claim 4 further characterized by:
apparatus for withdrawing working liquid from said vessel and lowering the pressure thereon to vaporize
said liquid and produce physical work in response to the pressurized vapor so produced.
6. A solar energy collector as defined in Claim 1 wherein said window is stationary and wherein said optical system is characterized by:
a cassegrain mirror system; and
means for adjusting the position of said cassegrain mirror system to track the relative movement of the sun and earth to maintain the focus of said mirror system near said window.
7. A solar energy collector as defined in Claim 6 wherein said cavity is further characterized by:
a rigidly mounted tubular vessel, the axis of
which is substantially parallel to the polar axis of
the earth, said cavity axis being the axis for diurnal adjustment of said cassegrain mirror system.
8. A solar energy collector as defined in Claim 7 wherein said window is further characterized by:
a cylindrical window concentric with said tubular vessel; and
a shutter for covering all but a small opening in said cylindrical window, said shutter and opening being adjusted to correspond with adjusted positions of said cassegrain mirror system.
9. A solar energy collector as defined in Claim 1 wherein said cavity is further characterized by:
a vessel having reflective inside walls.
10. A method of collecting and converting radiant solar energy, characterized by:
supplying and withdrawing a transparent or
transluscent working medium to and from an optically
closed, black body cavity;

focusing said radiant solar energy through a small window on the wall of said cavity to supply said energy within said cavity; and
directly absorbing said focused radiant solar energy in said working medium through repeated transmission of said energy through said working medium in said cavity without a significant loss of energy from said cavity through transmission of energy from said cavity through said window.

AMENDED CLAIMS
(received by the International Bureau on 25 January 1980 (25.01.80)
1. A solar energy collector for converting radiant solar energy (35,39), including an optical system (31,33) to focus said radiant energy through a transparent window (15) into a cavity having walls through which light cannot pass and containing a circulating transparent or translucent working medium, characterized by
the fact that:
the cavity is an optically closed, black
body cavity (11,13); and
said transparent window (15) which admits the focused energy into said black body cavity (11,13) is sufficiently small in size relative the size of said cavity that no significant loss of energy
from said cavity (11,13) through said window (15) occurs so that said radiant energy (35,39) is
repeatedly reflected by said cavity walls for
direct absorption by said circulating transparent or translucent working medium.
2. A solar energy collector as defined in Claim 1 further characterized by:
a movable partition (173,179) inside said black body cavity (13) , permeable to said working medium, serving as a movable wall so that the volume of
said black body cavity (11,13), in which said
radiant energy (35) is repeatedly reflected, can
be adjusted.
3. A solar energy collector as defined in Claim 1 wherein said working medium is a liquid, further
characterized by the fact that:
said black body cavity (11,13) is pressurized to prevent vaporization of said liquid so that
additional energy can be stored.
4. A solar energy collector as defined in Claim 3 further characterized by: a valve (275) for withdrawing said circulating liquid from said black body cavity (11,13) and
lowering the pressure thereon to vaporize said
liquid; and
a steam engine (277) connected to said valve
(275).
5. A solar energy collector as defined in Claim 1 wherein the solar radiant energy (35) is focused onto the window (15) by a cassegrain mirror system (31,33) mechanically rotated around said black body cavity
vessel (11,13) so as to always be oriented directly at the sun, and wherein said window (15) is further characterized by:
the fact that the window (15) is cylindrical
and concentric with said body cavity (11,13); and
a mechanically operated shutter system (151,153, 157,159) covering all but a small opening in said
cylindrical window (15).

STATEMENT UNDER ARTICLE 19

The claims have been rewritten to circumvent the cited prior art.
The essential feature distinguishing the invention which is the object of the present application from the cited prior art is the fact that the pressurized vessel (11,13) is a black body cavity, i.e., a vessel, having an extremely small opening relative the reflective inner surface area of the vessel. The solar energy is admitted through a very small uncovered area of the toroidal lens (15) and transmitted directly to the fluid medium. It cannot be reflected back out of the small open area of the window because the effective solar temperature always exceeds the temperature within the black body cavity.