This is the main conclusion from the report prepared by the Institute of Technology AIDO to assess the non-damaging qualities of Valent®.
Both the technology and the process, patented by Laitu Solar, are designed to achieve effective cleaning without causing damage to the mirrors.
The report’s results of the Non-damaging Assessment Process of the Mechanical Cleaning System of Parabolic Cylinder Mirrors, Valent® , carried out by the Technological Institute of Optics, Colour and Imaging (AIDO) has shown that both the technology and the process patented by Laitu Solar, guarantee excellent cleaning without damaging the CPC mirrors, resulting in a high reflectivity, and thus, greater solar thermal plant productivity even after 20 years of use.
The automatic cleaning system Valent®, developed by Laitu Solar is unique in that it uses two parabolic shaped rotative brushes and a pressurised water system both fully integrated in order to achieve effective cleaning of the surface of the parabolic cylinder collector (PCC) aswell as of the absorber tube in solar thermal plants.
Since its development, the managers of Laitu Solar, the leading provider in cleaning and maintenance services for solar thermal plants, have emphasized that by using the cleaning system Valent®, the solar panels reach a reflectivity level of more than 99.5%, the highest in the market. And all this with minimal water consumption.
Now, they have gone a step further and ensured that added to the precision of the technology and to the extremely thorough cleaning process, there is another advantage that is its non-destructiveness. This is according to the results from the report of the Non-damaging Assessment of the Mechanical Cleaning System of Parabolic Cylinder Mirrors, carried out by the independent laboratory AIDO. According to this study, the automatic cleaning system with brush, patented worldwide by Laitu Solar, cleans thoroughly without causing damage to the mirror, so the reflectivity does not deteriorate even after 20 years of continuous operation.
The key, according to the Business Development Director, Jaime Pandavenes, lies both in the technology and in the cleaning process: “The brush adapts to the shape of the parabolic cylinder mirrors guaranteeing the cleaning of the total reflective surface. Also, the process is based on a perpendicular cleaning, the brush’s bristles are perpendicular to the reflective surface of the CCP as it moves parallel to the mirrors. This is the huge difference from existing market solutions as by cleaning in a perpendicular manner (not by total contact) and in parallel we can guarantee no harm to the reflectivity”.
For the tests, CCP mirrors from solar thermal plants and machines that replicate 100% the performance of Valent®, were used. The results show relative values of reflectivity of 99.75%, which implies a maximum decrease of nominal reflectivity of 0.2% after more than 20 years of cleaning. “This unquestionable data shows that the Valent® cleaning system with brush in no way affects the nominal reflectivity of CCP mirrors and highlights Laitu Solar’s worldwide leadership in the market”, says Jaime Pandavenes.
This company belonging to the Dominguis Group from Valencia (Spain) has a strong structure in terms of technological development and R+D+I and offers the possibility of combining in one single contract the cleaning of mirrors, industrial cleaning and the maintenance of the fire protection installation aswell as the firefighting services.