Genetic algorithm optimization of heliostat field layout for the design of a central receiver solar thermal power plant
The heliostat field layout in a central receiver solar thermal power plant has significant optical losses that can ultimately affect the overall output power of the plant. In this paper, an optimized heliostat field layout based on annual efficiency and power of 50 MW for the local coordinates of Quetta, Pakistan, is proposed. The performance of two different heliostat field layouts such as radial staggered and Fermat's spiral distribution are evaluated and different design points in a year are considered for the analysis. The field layouts are then optimized using a rejection sampling based Genetic Algorithm (GA). It considers the output power and mean overall efficiency for vernal equinox, summer solstice, autumnal equinox, and winter solstice as objective functions. The GA optimizes the heliostat field parameters, namely, security distance (DS), tower height (TH), heliostat width to length ratio (WR), and the length of heliostats (LH). The study system was developed in MATLAB for validation. It was observed that for the radial staggered layout, the number of heliostats decreased by 364 and the efficiency was improved by 8.52 % using GA optimization relative to unoptimized results field layout. The annual efficiency for Fermat's spiral configuration was improved by 14.62 % and correspondingly, the number of heliostats decreased by 434.
Rehman, Atiq Ur
Athar, Syed Owais
AboRas, Kareem M.
Ghadi, Yazeed Yasin