Aidan Amstutz, Tyson Calvert, Logan Laird, Pedro Mercano, Alexi Saliba, Kaitlin Smith, James Soto
Our team’s Hedgehog Concept is to have the best overall efficiency of the heliostat module. This includes having the most efficient heat transfer qualities, as well as durability of the unit over time and under ambient weather conditions. We aim to accomplish this task with a unique hexagonal alvariumesque mirror design and two pulley movement system where control is propagated through a universal joint. The pulley system is a distinctive method of aligning the reflective surface as it reduces the force required by the motors relative to the traditional azimuthal drive, which in turn allows for less torque demand and inexpensive motors. A base plate is also utilized to support a module and ensure that heliostats remain orientated correctly in the rough terrain. Heliostat positioning is based on a sun positioning algorithm which uses predicted sun patterns to determine the best module orientation for optimum accuracy of reflected rays. This method has been proven through research to have minor losses and can even work in suboptimal weather conditions, which will allow an array to maximize performance. The layout of the field is based upon a Fresnel lens and will arrange modules in a linear orientation to account for light dispersion from the farthest heliostats. This positioning will also allow for mirror surfaces to be cleaned easily which will ensure that reflectivity is maximized. With the synthesis of these distinguished subsystems, the final design boasts the highest performance efficiency over the duration of its operation.