Hitachi Plant Technologies has developed a solar activated air conditioning system for local-air conditioning in buildings or district cooling facilities. This system is designed to drive a refrigerator directly with thermal energy generated from the solar energy collector to obtain chilled water for air conditioning.
Hitachi designed a new parabola trough-type solar collection panel for the AC system, and it sees a range of other applications for the new panel. The device automatically tracks the sun to optimize positioning of the fluid-filled heat collector tubing. This system also has application beyond air conditioning systems, and future development is expected to involve wider application in a variety of heat sources.
Hitachi estimates that its new air cooling system can generate sales of about $60 million by 2015, according to the company statement.