The parabolic trough collector (PTC) is being researched extensively due to its inherent characteristics. However, the majority of studies are numerical as its receiver is subjected to non-uniform flux and even the outdoor testing is a laborious task. Hence a novel method has been incorporated in the indoor experimental study to simulate the non-uniform flux over the receiver. To estimate the performance evaluation criteria (PEC) and exergetic efficiency of PTC, three variations of the wire matrix are used. In the analysis, SOLTRACE® input is 800 W/m2 DNI and Therminol VP-1 is the heat transfer fluid (Re = 2,800–7,800). Instantaneous efficiency and Nu have increased by 1.9 and 2.46 times respectively with a penalty of 10.37 times rise in f for the best wire matrix case. The highest PEC of 1.14 and an exergy enhancement ratio of 4.3 are observed with low dense and medium dense wire matrix respectively.
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