Development and performance evaluation of indigenized flat plate collector water heater for domestic and industrial applications
Keywords:renewable energy, flat plate collector, collector efficiency, payback time
Pakistan is facing severe energy crises from the last decade resulting daily electric blackouts from 8 to 12 h. The limited fossil fuel reserves and its environmental consequences have led to boost research and development of alternate energy resources. A huge amount of fossil fuels and electricity is being consumed for the generation of low to medium temperature heat energy for domestic, residential, agro-industrial and processing units. This low to medium temperature heat energy required can easily be fulfilled using solar collectors. This paper focus on the development of a flat plate collector using local infrastructure to reduce its initial cost. The collector consists of a window glass, absorber plate coated with black matt paint, copper tubes, inlet and outlet pipes, rockwool insulation and a wooden frame. The results showed that the average efficiency of the solar collector was found to be 47.06%. The complete collector unit has been developed using indigenous resources to reduce its initial cost without compromising on its efficiency. Due to ideal climatic conditions of Pakistan for solar thermal energy, this system can be used for domestic, residential, and agro-industrial applications especially in rural and remote areas having no access to natural gas or electricity.