The activity line devoted to Radiometry came up of the need to verify measurement of highly important radiometric magnitudes associated with solar concentration, i.e., solar irradiance (‘flux’ in the jargon of solar concentration) and high surface temperature of materials (detection by IR). At the PSA different systems are used to measure high solar irradiances on large surfaces. The basic element in these systems is the radiometer, whose measurement of the power of solar radiation incident on the solar receiver aperture depends on its proper use. The measurement of this magnitude is fundamental for determining the efficiency of receiver prototypes evaluated at the PSA and for defining the design of future central receiver solar power plants. Calibration of radiometers is performed in a specific furnace, which is also included in the set of equipment associated to this activity for this purpose. The accuracy of gages is within ±3% with a repeatability of ±1%.
The equipment associated to this activity also includes three black bodies used as references for calibrating IR sensors devoted to temperature measurement with guaranteed traceability between 0 and 1700°C. These black bodies have a built-in PID control system and the temperature is checked by a high-precision platinum thermocouple:

  • The MIKRON 330 black body is a cylindrical cavity which can provide any temperature from 300 to 1700°C accurate to ±0.25% and a resolution of 1°C. Its emissivity is 0.99 in a 25-mm-diameter aperture.
  • The MIKRON M305 black body is a spherical cavity that can supply any temperature between 100 and 1000ºC accurate to ±0.25% and with a resolution of 1ºC. Its emissivity is 0.995 in a 25-mm-dia. aperture.
  • The MIKRON M340 black body is a flat cavity and can provide any temperature from 0 to 150ºC accurate to ±0.2°C and a resolution of 0.1°C. Its emissivity is 0.99 in a 51-mm-aperture.
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View of the PSA Radiometry equipment
IR sensor calibration using a black body