Title: Failure probability analysis of heliostat systems

Authors: Samir Benammar; Kong Fah Tee

Addresses: Laboratoire Energétique – Mécanique et Ingénieries (LEMI), Université M'Hamed Bougara de Boumerdes, 35000 Boumerdes, Algeria ' School of Engineering, University of Greenwich, Kent ME4 4TB, UK

Abstract: Heliostats represent the most important maintenance cost in the solar power tower plant. The aim of this work is to provide a failure probability analysis for heliostat design in order to minimize this maintenance cost. Based on mechanics of material study and wind aerodynamic analysis, a performance function, with five random variables, has been developed wherein the random variables are: wind speed, inside and outside pedestal diameters, pedestal yield stress and mirror mass. Four main methods have been proposed: first order reliability method, second order reliability method, Monte Carlo (MC) method and subset simulation (SS) method. The variation of failure probability with the variation of pedestal wall thickness and wind speed, for different outside diameters and heliostat azimuth and elevation angles, has been simulated. The results show that SS is more efficient and accurate for small failure probabilities; however, MC is more accurate for high failure probabilities.

Keywords: failure analysis; heliostat; probability of failure; subset simulation; wind load.

DOI: 10.1504/IJCIS.2020.112037

International Journal of Critical Infrastructures, 2020 Vol.16 No.4, pp.342 - 366

Received: 05 May 2019
Accepted: 11 Nov 2019

Published online: 23 Dec 2020 *

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