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Posted by Axel Grease on October 13, 2009, 9:25 am
Mr. Dovey,

Referring back to your September thread about reflected light waste ...

It occured to me that a "quick-n-dirty" way to increase collection surface
area on the target pipe and to reduce reflected light waste, one might try
simple/cheap approaches like these:

- Knurl the pipe in a lathe to increase the surface area.  You might want to
experiment with fine vs. coarse vs. a duplex knurling (fine knurling over a
prior coarse cut) to maximize the surface area increase.
- Parkerizing (phosphatizing) to achieve a flat, dark gray finish.
- Add a thinned out, flat green stain to increase UV absorption.  (Green
used to be considered as better for UV abosrption than plain flat black.  Is
that still the case?)
- One might then coat it with a flat, clear-coat (urethane?) to inhibit
rusting while still allowing the UV to find the green-black UV absorptive

What do you think?


Posted by Morris Dovey on October 13, 2009, 3:35 pm
Axel Grease wrote:

I'm going to take the approach I described at


Note that it isn't the increase in surface area (although that's one of
the side effects), but rather using a surface geometry that guarantees
more reflections. It's important to keep in mind that we're after an
"optical" effect.

I thought about knurling, and decided that I couldn't maintain the
precision I needed that way.

The approach I've settled on for the time being is to re-grind a 3-inch
carbide slitting saw to cut a 10 V-groove as shown in


and make repeated passes cutting each groove 1/32" (0.79375 mm) deep.
This geometry should yield 18 reflections for somewhere around 95%

I haven't worried much about coatings other than to give a bit of
thought to taking the grooved tube to a printed circuit manufacturer for
a /very/ thin gold plating to inhibit oxidation of my aluminum tube.

I think it'll work well without any other coating.

Morris Dovey
DeSoto Solar
DeSoto, Iowa USA

Posted by Axel Grease on October 14, 2009, 7:24 am

want to


Interesting.  Since the system will contain super-heated steam/water (and
not knowing the presures to be generated), I had not considered aluminum
tubing as the collector tube material.  I presumed steel would the the
material of choice.  Perhaps I am a bit old fashioned.  Oh well.  I have not
played with such things since the early '70s.

I was a devout fan of the Whole Earth Catalog and Mother Earth News... then
the international yo-yo effects of economic power games coming from Big Oil
and their pals in OPEC messed up so many good ideas.


Posted by Morris Dovey on October 14, 2009, 9:37 am
 Axel Grease wrote:

I'm only heating air (not under pressure) - so I don't need to worry
about anything other than exceeding the melting point of the aluminum.

For steam generation it'd a good idea to know a /lot/ more than I do. :-|

I enjoyed reading both (to the extent of buying a lifetime subscription
to TMEN when it was offered) but they did themselves in with really poor
financial management - worse, they put out a /lot/ of half-baked and
misleading information.

Most of their good ideas were premised on availability of a substantial
amount of discretionary time made possible by single-earner households.
When we, as a society, decided to effectively double the labor force we
produced major unintended consequences, and just a few of those were
elimination of a very large part of that discretionary time, a huge
increase in transport resource requirements, and serious reductions in
both quality and quantity of parenting. I'll own up to my share of the
responsibility for that decision, but I'm not as proud of it as I'd
thought I would be. It seems we achieved gender equality at the cost of
generational equality (and not just for a single generation).

The petroleum folks /are/ greedy, but no more so than they've always been.

Morris Dovey
DeSoto Solar
DeSoto, Iowa USA

Posted by sno on October 14, 2009, 4:58 pm
 Morris Dovey wrote:

A little off topic....but.....

I have always thought the two earner household came about because of the
  introduction of computers...and the movement from manufacturing to svc
economy.....causing not enough high paying jobs for one earner to
support a 4 person household....

If what I think is true there are going to be a lot more welfare people
in the future....as we are starting to see now...with people losing
their jobs and their savings.....

Do not see how we can exist with only poor and rich left...with few in
the middle class....

thank you for listening to my thoughts.....sno

Correct Scientific Terminology:
Hypothesis - a guess as to why or how something occurs
Theory - a hypothesis that has been checked by enough experiments
  to be generally assumed to be true.
Law - a hypothesis that has been checked by enough experiments
  in enough different ways that it is assumed to be truer then a theory.
Note: nothing is proven in science, things are assumed to be true.

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