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Joshua Pearce

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Last updated: September 9, 2013      

ABSTRACT: As regional shortages of fresh water become more prevalent, solar distillation using a single-effect basin holds promise as a method to bring low-cost, clean, and ecologically-responsible water to remote area dwellers. Compound parabolic concentrators (CPCs) can be used to direct more light onto the still increasing the throughput and efficiency of these passive solar devices. A computer program has been developed that uses the properties of materials and the solar energy characteristics of the site to calculate the increase in output of water due to reflectors of different height. For reflector 2.5 times the width of the still, the output per unit area per day roughly triples with only ~10% increase in cost and moderate maintenance (weekly tilts), indicating that CPCs have a significant economic advantage in producing solar distilled water.

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Email: jpearce@clarion.edu

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