Two degrees of freedom parallel linkageto track solarthermal platforms installed on ships
IOP Conference Series: Materials Science and Engineering
Transportation is responsible at global level for one third of the total energy consumption. Solutions to reduce conventional fuel consumption are under research, to improve the systems' efficiency and to replace the current fossil fuels. There already are several applications, usually onsmall maritime vehicles, using photovoltaic systems to cover the electric energy demand on-board andto support the owners' commitment towards sustainability. In most cases, these systems are fixed, parallely
... fixed, parallely aligned with the deck; thus, the amount of solar energy received is heavily reduced (down to 50%) as compared to the available irradiance. Large scale, feasible applications require to maximize the energy output of the solar convertors implemented on ships; using solar tracking systems is an obvious path, allowing a gain up to 35...40% in the output energy, as compared to fixed systems. Spatial limitations, continuous movement of the ship and harsh navigation condition are the main barriers in implementation. This paper proposes a solar tracking system with two degrees of freedom, for a solar thermal platform, based on a parallel linkage with sphericaljoints, considered as Multibody System. The analytical model for mobile platform position, pressure angles and a numerical example are given in the paper.