Parabolic to fiberoptic
Jeffery Gordon has proposed and constructed prototypes for arrays of small parabolic dishes concentrating sunlight into fiberoptic cables. a 1 mm diameter cable can carry about 16 watts (due to the limits of concentrating ability) of sunlight into a nearby lab where it may be used for various processes. The advantage of this setup is that the array of small dishes can track the sun like a flat panel collector, and do not require huge support structures. Also, the sunlight can be used in a controlled environment, rather than precariously at the top of some large structure. This enables such things as the creation of nanostructures through solar ablation and surgical procedures with beams of sunlight rather than lasers. Both of these have been accomplished by Dr. Gordon.
Applications and Product Ecology
The controlled conditions would allow things like water purification, solar thermochemistry and solar upgrading of hydrocarbons.
The Vertical Farm Project has proposed using a similar method to pipe sunlight into indoor growing rooms for controlled-environment growing.
- D Feuermann, JM Gordon & M Huleihil (2002) "Solar fiber-optic mini-dish concentrators: first experimental results and field experience". Solar Energy 72, 459-472
- D Feuermann, JM Gordon & M Huleihil (2002) "Light leakage in optical fibers: experimental results, modeling and the consequences for solar concentrators". Solar Energy 72, 195-204
- D Feuermann, JM Gordon (1998) "Solar surgery: remote fiber optic irradiation with highly concentrated sunlight in lieu of lasers". Optical engineering, 1998
- JM Gordon (2001) "Solar energy engineering : A mini-revolution in Israel". Refocus 2, 34-37