Abstract

We present a design and optical simulation of a cost-effective hybrid daylighting/LED system composed of mixing sunlight and light-emitting diode (LED) illumination powered by renewable solar energy for indoor lighting. In this approach, the sunlight collected by the concentrator is split into visible and non-visible rays by a beam splitter. The proposed sunlight collector consists of a Fresnel lens array. The non-visible rays are absorbed by the solar photovoltaic devices to provide electrical power for the LEDs. The visible rays passing through the beam splitters are coupled to a stepped thickness waveguide (STW) by tilted mirrors and confined by total internal reflection (TIR). LEDs are integrated at the end of the STW to improve the lighting quality. LEDs’ light and sunlight are mixed in the waveguide and they are coupled into an optical fiber bundle for indoor illumination. An optical sensor and lighting control system are used to control the LED light flow to ensure that the total output flux for indoor lighting is a fixed value when the sunlight is inadequate. The daylighting capacity was modeled and simulated with a commercial ray tracing software (LighttoolsTM). Results show that the system can achieve 63.8% optical efficiency at geometrical concentration ratio of 630. A required accuracy of sun tracking system achieved more than ±0.5o. Therefore, our results provide an important breakthrough for the commercialization of large scale optical fiber daylighting systems that are faced with challenges related to high costs.

© 2016 Optical Society of Korea

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