Document Type : Original Article
Process Engineering Department, Faculty of Chemical Engineering, Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran, Iran
1- Process Engineering Department, Faculty of Chemical Engineering, Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran, Iran 2- Optoelectronics and Nanophotonics Research Group, Faculty of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran, Iran
Department of Engineering, German University of Technology in Muscat, Oman
Water desalination using solar steam generation systems (SSGSs) is a facile and inexpensive technology that employs a renewable and environmentally friendly source of energy. In this method that solar is directly used for generating steam, a photothermal layer absorbs sunlight and converts it to heat, leading the evaporation of the water transferred toward this layer. Studies show that there are four main challenges in solar steam generation systems that should be considered in research and addressed by providing appropriate solutions. These challenges include managing and preventing heat loss, structural strength, managing and transferring water within the structure, absorbing light, and converting light into heat. In this paper, single-layer SSGSs composing of open porosity polyurethane (PU) foam mixed with photothermal materials are used to generate steam. Among the different systems comprising graphite, graphene oxide, carbon nanotube, char, and gold thin film, gold thin film and carbon nanotube based systems resulted the highest performances with an efficiency of more than 60% and the water evaporation rates of 0.824 and 0.808 Kg.m-2.h-1, respectively. Fortunately, the device shows no significant changes in its performance after 40 cycles, revealing the suitable stability.