Experimental study and comparative analysis of modified solar paraboloidal dish–thermoelectric generator systems


Solar energy is one of the major sources of renewable energy which contributes for environmental protection and pollution reduction. Methods and technologies to utilize concentrated solar energy have been the subject of research and development for a number of decades. In the present study, experimental investigations were carried out for improving the performance of small-scale solar paraboloidal dish–thermoelectric generator (SPD-TEG) system. For this, SPD collector was fabricated using a satellite dish antenna fitted with aluminum foil as concentrating surface. The receiver unit consists of TEG module was modified for realistic outdoor conditions by using low-cost waste materials. The performance of two different TEG modules, i.e., TEC1-12706 and SP1848-27145, was evaluated and compared in terms of absorber plate (hot side) temperature, power output, and efficiency obtained with SPD-TEG system during the months of May and June. It was observed that the temperature difference between receiver plate and heat sink is significantly affecting the power output. With TEC1-12706 module, voltage and power was obtained as 1.9 V and 0.665 W, respectively, whereas these values were 3.4 V and 1.836 W, respectively, in case of SP1848-27145 module. The efficiency of the SPD was obtained up to 44.16% and 52.1% in the months of May and June, respectively. The combined efficiencies of the SPD-TEG system with TEC1-12706 module and SP1848-27145 module were found up to 0.23% and 0.63%, respectively. The improvement in performance of SPD-TEG system was observed due to increment in temperature difference between hot side and cold side of TEG modules.

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Concentrated solar power


Paraboloidal dish concentrator




Photovoltaic geographical information system


Solar paraboloidal dish


Thermoelectric generator


Area of the aperture (m2)


Aspect ratio


Current (A)

Ib :

Direct normal irradiance (W/m2)


Thermal conductivity (W/m K)

P :

Power (W)

Tc :

Temperature of cold side (K)

Th :

Temperature of hot side (K)

Tm :

Mean temperature (K)

Qh :

Amount of heat supplied to the hot side (J)


Voltage (Volt)


Seebeck coefficient

ηpdc :

Efficiency of the solar PDC

ηsys :

Efficiency of the system

ηTEG :

Electrical efficiency of the thermoelectric generator


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The authors are grateful to Rajasthan Technical University (RTU), Kota, for providing the research facility to conduct this study.

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Correspondence to Kunj Bihari Rana.

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Verma, V., Rana, K.B. & Sharma, S.S. Experimental study and comparative analysis of modified solar paraboloidal dish–thermoelectric generator systems. Environ Sci Pollut Res (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-020-09647-7

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  • Solar paraboloidal dish
  • Thermoelectric generator system
  • SPD-TEG system