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Master-Thesis: Operation analysis and evaluation of solar drying plants


AEE - Institute for Sustainable Technologies (AEE INTEC) is a non-university research institute in Gleisdorf founded in 1988. AEE INTEC currently employs around 60 people from 8 different nations. With 4 dissertations, 5 to 10 diploma students, interns and student assistants, the institute also contributes to the training of highly qualified specialists. Activities:

  • Basic and applied research
  • National and international R&D projects
  • Cooperation with universities, FHs, other research institutions and industry

AEE INTEC works in the fields of "Thermal Energy Technologies and Hybrid Systems", "Sustainable Buildings" and "Industrial Processes and Energy Systems".

Research project

In recent years, more than 100 innovative solar-supported heat supply concepts have been implemented throughout Austria as a result of a public funding programme lasting several years. The range of systems implemented extends from solar process heat to solar grid integration to the use of new storage technologies (concrete component activation, underground storage) and the use of solar thermal PV hybrid collectors (PVT) in conjunction with heat pumps.

Individual, particularly innovative heat supply concepts will be metrologically investigated within the framework of scientific monitoring over at least one year of operation. The results form the basis for optimisation of the systems and also the basis for targeted further development of the technology. A consortium led by AEE INTEC was commissioned to carry out the accompanying scientific research.


The project team will be supported by a paid master thesis for the measurement data-based analysis and evaluation of solar drying systems. In the projects to be analysed, covered air collectors are used for drying wood chips. In contrast to the usual system technology used for solar thermal systems, the energy is distributed exclusively via air ducts in these systems. Thus new calculation and evaluation methods are necessary for the analysis of the systems, which are to be developed in the course of the work on the basis of real measurement data.

The technical analyses comprise the assessment and presentation of the overall system as well as detailed evaluations of individual subsystems on the basis of measurement data (e.g. by means of energy balances, representative temperature, power and volume flow curves, collector field efficiency calculations, heat exchanger analyses, etc.). In the course of the ecological evaluation for example the primary energy demand as well as the greenhouse gas emissions of the projects are to be determined and evaluated. The economic evaluation includes the determination of the system and heat production costs as well as a corresponding sensitivity analysis.

Work plan

Duration: 6 Months
Starting date: Juli 2020
Place of execution: Gleisdorf


DI Walter Becke