A theoretical investigation on the effect of collector aspect ratio on the thermal performance of wavy finned absorber solar air heaters has been performed. For the constant collector area, the various performance parameters have been calculated for plane and wavy finned solar air heaters. It has been found that the performance of wavy finned solar air heater improved with the increase in the collector aspect ratio. The performance of wavy finned solar air heater has been found 30 percent higher than those of plane solar air heater. The obtained results for wavy fin solar air heaters are compared with the available experimental data of most common type solar air heaters.
Channel depth is an important design parameter to be fixed in designing a solar air heater. In this paper, a mathematical model has been developed to study the influence of channel duct on the thermal performance of solar air heaters. The channel depth has been varied from 1.5 cm to 3.5 cm for the mass flow range 0.01 to 0.11 kg/s. Based on first law of thermodynamics, the channel depth of 1.5 cm shows better thermal performance for all the mass flow range. Also, better thermohydraulic performance has been found up to 0.05 kg/s, and beyond this, thermohydraulic efficiency starts decreasing. It has been seen that, with the increase in the mass flow rate, the difference between thermal and thermohydraulic efficiency increases because of the increase in pressure drop. At lower mass flow rate, 0.01 kg/s, the thermal and thermohydraulic efficiencies for respective channel depth remain the same.