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Method and apparatus for aligning a solar concentrator using two lasers

United States Patent

July 22, 2003
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
Sandia National Laboratories - Visit the Intellectual Property Management and Licensing Website
A method and apparatus are provided for aligning the facets of a solar concentrator. A first laser directs a first laser beam onto a selected facet of the concentrator such that a target board positioned adjacent to the first laser at approximately one focal length behind the focal point of the concentrator is illuminated by the beam after reflection thereof off of the selected facet. A second laser, located adjacent to the vertex of the optical axis of the concentrator, is used to direct a second laser beam onto the target board at a target point thereon. By adjusting the selected facet to cause the first beam to illuminate the target point on the target board produced by the second beam, the selected facet can be brought into alignment with the target point. These steps are repeated for other selected facets of the concentrator, as necessary, to provide overall alignment of the concentrator.
Diver, Jr.; Richard Boyer (Albuquerque, NM)
The United States of America as represented by the United States Department of Energy (Washington, DC)
09/ 679,355
October 5, 2000
CONTRACTUAL ORIGIN OF THE INVENTION The United States Government has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract Number DE-AC04-94AL85000 between the United States Department of Energy and Sandia National Laboratories.