Thermal Solar




By using thermal transfer fluids I am able to achieve higher temperatures for energy storage. This coupled with tube nest heat exchangers allows me to explore and realize a wide variety of applications. Examples are curing ovens for powder coating, wood drying kilns, air conditioning and heating, sterling engines, low pressure steam generation, and even distilling to name a few. Use of an industrial PLC allows for cost effective control of the system.
The prototype is 75% complete and has been constructed with over 80% salvaged materials and equipment from industrial discards. I have developed and tested a self tuning tracking system for the parabolic dish and am currently constructing 3 different collection heads for evaluation. Most items required for completion have been obtained and are being refurbished for service. The prototype model is on track for dynamic testing by end of October this year. I would use the prize money to acquire the remaining materials and complete the small machining center used for making special parts.



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    6 Discussions


    Is there an update on this project?

    What type pump? What do you use for a heat storage tank? Is the box mounted on the 10' dish, or is the dish a reflector keeping a focused sun on the collector?

    So many questions, such an awesome project.

    2 replies

    Reply 1 year ago

    Off the grid for quite some time back back on things now that I am retired. If you're still interested reply back. I'll be checking my inbox every few days.


    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    The project continues on. I work 150 miles from my home where the project is ongoing. Every other weekend I go home and spend time on it and other issues, tractor etc. Preliminary construction of the dish is completed. See attached pic. The tracking systems are almost completed and hydro testing of the primary thermal fluid system is complete. The pump is a refurbished positive displacement metering pump designed to operate at 600 deg. F. It is driven by a variable speed motor linked back to the PLC. The PLC and associated controls are up and running. The energy storage tank is a 60 gal. air receiver modified for the project. The attached pic is taken in the shop under 2 8 ft flourescent  fixtures. If you look at the collector you can clearly see the focal point on the top welding beads. When installed the collector bottom will be in this position. Using a remote digital thermometer the temperature at the center base of the dish was 59 deg. when raised to focal point the temperature rose to 65 deg in 1 minute. Keep in mind this is under 2 flourescents mounted on a 12 ft. high ceiling. Using solar industry standards the dish should deliver between 8K and 10K BTU's. Sorry Goat it is not letting me attach the images?? I'll try at the site. If you send an email to I'll send some pics.

    Eye Poker

    5 years ago on Introduction

    I'm thinking this would make an ideal source of heat for winter growing.


    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    The prototype will employ Dowtherm It is designed for such applications. This link will provide you with more info on the characteristics. There are other brands but Dow has been in the game the longest.
    Are you building a system?