The reasons for the popularity of alternative energy sources are quite understandable: there is an opportunity to save on fuel and to realize the dreams of environmentally friendly life support systems. Skillfully using the energy of the sun, wind and water, you can turn an ordinary country house into a modern eco-house.
We will tell you how to equip solar heating in a private house and analyze with you how profitable it is. In order to thoroughly highlight the issues of the use of the energy of the daylight, we described in detail all the popular options that have received practical application and positive feedback from users.
Taking into account our recommendations, you can build an effective heliosystem for summer cottage or a country house. To facilitate the perception of difficult material, we supplemented the information with illustrative diagrams, illustrations and video tutorials.
The content of the article:
- Solar Energy Ways
- Pros and cons of an alternative heating system
Solar energy for heating
- The principle of operation of the panels with photovoltaic cells
- Photocell efficiency
- Home Power Plant Installation Diagram
Collector heating system
- Flat option for independent production
- Tube collectors - the solution for the northern regions
- Performance Method
- Conclusions and useful video on the topic
Solar Energy Ways
Application methods energies of the heavenly body do not belong to innovative technologies, solar heat is used for a long time and very successfully. However, this applies mainly to Australia, some countries in Europe, America and the southern regions, where alternative energy can be obtained throughout the year.
Some northern areas are deficient in natural radiation, so it is used as an additional or backup option.
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Solar panels are one of the ways to get almost free energy emitted by a celestial body
The device of an autonomous solar power station is expedient in regions with a large number of sunny days, which is not related to the average annual temperature.
The autonomous solar system is mainly located on the roofs of low-rise buildings and in areas free from trees.
In the period of frost, solar systems supply energy for heating air, steam or water heating, in summer they provide heated water
Solar power plants are green, environmentally friendly and capable of continuously renewing types of energy generation.
So far, the efficiency of solar power plants is too dependent on the number of sunny days. It is profitable only in southern latitudes. In the middle lane and in the north can only serve as a backup source
Solar panels in the south of the CIS countries will be able to provide a country house with electricity, hot water and coolant for heating circuits
Solar systems, even used as a backup energy source, bring a fairly high economic effect, reducing the burden on the main options for energy production.
Passive use of solar energy
Solar Panel Installation Option
The optimal location of a private solar system
The location of the solar panel along the eaves
Heliosystem on a gentle slope of the roof
Solar power station as a backup source
Battery operation in the southern regions of the CIS countries
The real benefits of solar systems in the private sector
The intermediaries between the sun's rays and the energy-generating mechanism are solar cells or collectors, which differ in their purpose and design.
Batteries accumulate solar energy and allow it to be used to power household electrical appliances. They are panels with photocells on one side and a locking mechanism on the other. You can experiment and assemble the battery yourself, but it's easier to buy ready-made elements - the choice is quite wide.
Solar systems (solar collectors) are part of the heating system at home. Large heat-insulated heat-carrying ducts, like batteries, are mounted on raised shields facing the sun or roof slopes.
To assume that absolutely all the northern regions receive much less natural heat than the southern ones, erroneously. Suppose there are much more sunny days in Chukotka or in central Canada than in the south of Great Britain
To increase the efficiency, the panels are placed on dynamic mechanisms resembling a tracking system - they turn after the movement of the sun. The process of energy conversion occurs in the tubes located inside the boxes.
The main difference of solar systems from solar panels is that the first heat the coolant, and the second accumulate electricity. It is possible to heat the room with photovoltaic cells, but the device’s circuits are irrational and suitable only for those areas where there are at least 200 sunny days a year.
Diagram of a heating system with a solar collector connected to a boiler and a spare source of electricity (for example, a gas boiler) running on traditional fuel (+)
Pros and cons of an alternative heating system
The advantages of a solar heating system are not so many, but each of them is weighty and can be a reason for private experiments:
- Ecological advantages. It is safe for residents of the house and the surrounding nature, a clean source of heat that does not require the use of traditional fuels.
- Autonomy. System owners are completely independent of energy prices and the economic situation in the country.
- Efficiency. While maintaining the traditional heating system, it is possible to reduce the cost of paying for hot water.
- Accessibility. To install solar systems do not need permission from state authorities.
But there are unpleasant moments that can spoil the overall picture. For example, to determine the effectiveness of the system will require a long period of at least 3 years (provided that there is enough solar energy and it is actively used).
Installing only solar modules will require large investments: the cheapest silicon panels will cost at least 2,200 rubles. apiece, and polycrystalline six-diode elements of the first category - up to 17000 apiece. Calculate the cost of 30 modules is quite simple (+)
Users have the following disadvantages:
- high prices for equipment necessary to launch the system into operation;
- direct dependence of the amount of heat produced on the geographical location and weather;
- obligatory availability of a backup source, for example, a gas boiler (in practice, a solar system is often a backup).
To achieve greater returns, you have to regularly monitor the health of collectors, clean them from debris and protect them from frost. If the temperature often drops below 0 ° C, you need to take care of additional thermal insulation not only of the solar system elements, but also of the house as a whole.
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Solar panels with a capacity of 120 watts all year round provide energy to the lighting lines and appliances of the country house.
Low-power solar power plant is made up directly by the solar battery, battery device and charge controller
Energy consumers of the solar battery in the country are energy-saving lamps, power tools, radio, TV
When used in a solar circuit with a capacity of about 650 W, the equipment block inside the house should be supplemented with a 1 kW inverter
Solar panels on the roof of a country house
Mounting of dacha heliosystem batteries
Outdoor Equipment Solar Power Station
Technical devices located inside the house
Solar energy for heating
The main purpose of photovoltaic cells that accumulate energy is to provide electricity to the house. To include them in the scheme heating system devices and to achieve optimal functioning, it is necessary to assemble a chain with a storage tank.
It is in it that the water will be heated, which, having reached a certain temperature, will fill the pipes and radiators in the rooms that require heating (living room, bathroom).
Solar-powered system with a double-circuit tank that organizes heating and hot water supply in two directions: to heating radiators and to the points of parsing (+)
Let's try to make out the design features of solar cells and determine their potential role in the heating system.
The principle of operation of the panels with photovoltaic cells
There are three common types of elements for solar devices:
- Monocrystalline. These are thin plates of the most pure silicon, cut from a crystal grown under artificial conditions. The most productive variety with an efficiency of about 17-18%. The optimum temperature for operation is from 5 ºС to 25 ºС.
- Polycrystalline. Made from wafers obtained by gradually cooling the silicon melt. Their production technologies are less labor intensive, but the efficiency of polycrystalline photovoltaic cells is significantly lower - no more than 12%.
- Amorphous. They are film. Made by the method of the evaporation phase, as a result of which silicon in the form of a thin film is deposited on a polymer flexible basis. The cheapest production method is combined with our low productivity, estimated at up to 7%.
For installation of autonomous heating systems in the northern regions, the most suitable option is considered photovoltaic batteriescollected from monocrystalline elements. However, batteries with amorphous modules are easier to install, practically base-free, and much cheaper.
Monocrystalline module consists of series-connected elements, combined into modules. Several modules form a solar panel. The dark surface of photovoltaic solar systems optimizes the absorption of sunlight
The task of the external elements is to absorb and transform the sun's rays. The released energy flows further and is concentrated in the accumulator. A small element gives about 100-250 W, and a 25-30 m² prefab panel provides electricity for a small house. For the installation of the heating system will require energy by 2-3 times more.
The inverter acts as a converter of direct current from the solar "production" into electricity, since alternating current is necessary for the operation of household appliances and luminaires.
If we talk specifically about the heating system, the electric boiler for heating water also operates on alternating current. To provide light for the home at night, batteries will be needed to keep daily supply.
Inverter modules are installed in a convenient place for maintenance, although it does not need constant control and operates in automatic mode (+)
The easiest way to purchase solar collectors and apply one of the simple, proven over the years schemes. However, circumstances sometimes dictate their terms. Suppose you have a great functioning working system with a solar generator, but for now it serves to supply electricity and provide hot water to the house.
It is clear that buying new equipment is unprofitable, so it is easier to increase power by purchasing a certain amount of photovoltaic cells. The budget option - silicon panels with a capacity of up to 23-25%.
It is necessary to connect the heating device working on an electricity to a current source. Universal version - boiler, equipped with distribution wiring.
Polymeric film elements on the Russian market are much less common than silicon mono- and polycrystalline analogues. They are convenient for installation, but have low efficiency - only 6%
If the electricity supply is properly organized, it should be enough for both hot water supply and heating. There are examples when the house is fully provided with heat - it can be recognized on the roof, almost completely covered with panels.
Sometimes it requires the construction of special detached structures, if the roof area is not enough. It turns out that to increase power, an additional free area is needed.
Even the most careful calculations will not help you determine the exact amount of potential energy and quickly create an efficient, streamlined system. The fact is that in practice there are obstacles, the appearance of which is difficult to predict.
Here are some of the factors:
- The inconstancy of the weather. A clear number of sunny days is unknown even in the southern areas. It is almost impossible to reliably predict their number in the northern regions.
- Irregularity of obtaining electricity. For example, in the northern regions in the winter a short light day, so a lot of recycled solar energy is spent on lighting. In addition, the intensity of solar radiation in the winter period is significantly reduced.
- Periodic breakdowns. Like all technical systems, solar panels can break down from time to time due to damage to individual elements, contractual joints, protective surfaces, etc.
Therefore, you can learn about efficiency only after a certain period of time, at least - in a year. It may be necessary to increase the number of photocells or batteries, consider additional insulation of the house, reduce the heated area. Suppose in the northern regions of Germany in order to save bedrooms are often not heated at all.
Maintenance of installed photocells does not require special skills and consists of regular cleaning: cleaning snow in winter and debris during the warm period, washing the glass surface with water from a hose
Home Power Plant Installation Diagram
The easiest way solar generator installation - contacting a company that sells system components and offers services for their installation. Pros - a professional project with individual features, a guarantee for all products and installation, minus - the high cost.
If you have the relevant experience, you can independently assemble a mini-power station with solar panels for heating a private house.
The most effective is considered to be a hybrid scheme of the device of an air-solar system, in which photocells are used for energy, collectors for water heating and additionally installed wind generator It can be replaced with a backup fuel source (+)
All parts for the assembly of the heating system are sold in specialized stores.
You must purchase the following components:
- a set of silicon or film solar modules;
- energy storage battery;
- charge controller, which regulates the process of charging and discharging the battery;
- inverter that converts DC to AC;
- set of connecting cables.
It is desirable that the batteries are the same (taking into account the brand, capacity and even the party) and have the opportunity to store energy for 3-4 days. The duration of their work depends on the temperature of the room - in cold conditions they discharge quickly. If the daily consumption is 2400 Wh, the batteries need a total capacity of at least 1000 Ah.
When using car batteries, remember that their maximum efficiency is 70-75% ( services - 3 years), special devices for solar systems have the best performance - up to 85% (service life - 10 years). Some energy is lost during storage and conversion.
The quality of the current generated by sinusoidal inverters for solar systems, above the current from the centralized network. The feature of the equipment is the synchronization of the voltage phase, at which the transition of 12 V to 220 V is carried out without interruption in the functioning of household electrical appliances.
Power inverters - from 250 W to 6000 W and above. You can increase the output power by emptying the parallel connection of several devices. For example, 3 x 3000 W = 9000 W (+)
After installation of all elements of the solar system, it is necessary to connect an electric tank that heats the water to the inverter, and a heating pipeline to the tank, in turn.
Collector heating system
The greatest efficiency and impact can be achieved by installing collectors instead of solar modules — outdoor installations in which water is heated by solar radiation. Such a system is more logical and natural, since it does not require heating the coolant by other devices.
Consider the design and principle of operation of devices of two main types: flat and tubular.
Flat option for independent production
The design of flat installations is so simple that experienced craftsmen assemble handicraft analogues do it yourself, buy some of the parts in a specialty store, and build some of the improvised material.
Inside the steel or aluminum insulated duct plate fixed adsorbing heat from the sun. Most often it is covered with a layer of black chrome. On top of the heat absorber is protected by a sealed transparent cover.
Water is heated in tubes laid with a snake and connected to the plate. Water or antifreeze enters the inside of the duct through the inlet, heats up in the pipes and moves to the outlet - to the outlet.
The light transmittance of the lid is explained by the use of a transparent material — strong tempered glass or plastic (for example, polycarbonate). To prevent the sun's rays from reflecting, the glass or plastic surface is matted (+)
There are two types of connection, one-pipe and two-pipe, there is no fundamental difference in the choice. But there is a big difference in the way in which the coolant will be supplied to the collectors - gravity flow or by means of a pump. The first option is recognized to be ineffective due to the weak speed of water movement; according to the principle of heating, it resembles a container for a summer shower.
The operation of the second option is due to the connection of the circulation pump, which delivers the coolant in force. The energy source for the operation of pumping equipment can be a solar-powered grid.
The temperature of the coolant when heated by a solar collector reaches 45-60 ºС, the maximum indicator at the output is 35-40 ºС. To improve the efficiency of the heating system along with radiators use "warm floors" (+)
Tube collectors - the solution for the northern regions
The general principle of operation resembles the functioning of flat analogs, but with one difference - heat exchange tubes with heat carrier are inside glass flasks. The tubes themselves are feather, soldered on one side and look like feathers, and coaxial (vacuum), inserted into each other and sealed on both sides.
Heat exchangers are also different:
- system of conversion of solar energy into heat Heat-pipe;
- conventional tube to move the coolant U-type.
The second type of heat exchangers is recognized as more efficient, but not popular enough because of the cost of repairs: when one tube fails, the entire section will have to be replaced.
The heat-pipe tube is not part of the whole segment, so you can change it in 2-3 minutes. The failed coaxial elements are repaired simply by removing the cap and replacing the damaged channel.
A scheme explaining the cyclical nature of the heating process inside vacuum tubes: cold liquid under exposure to solar heat heats up and evaporates, giving way to the next portion of cold heat carrier (+)
After analyzing the technical characteristics of collectors of different types and summarizing the experience of their use, we decided that flat collectors are more suitable for the southern regions, and tubular for the northern regions. Especially well established in a harsh climate installation with the system Heat-pipe. They have a heating capacity even on cloudy days and at night, “feeding on” a minimal amount of sunlight.
A sample of the standard scheme of connecting solar collectors to boiler equipment: the pumping station circulates water, the controller controls the heating process
Usually, having experimented with a small number of solar modules, owners of private houses go further and improve the system in various ways.
The easiest way is to increase the number of modules involved, respectively, to attract additional space for their placement and to purchase more powerful related equipment.
What to do if there is a shortage of free space? Here are some guidelines for increasing the efficiency of a solar station (with photovoltaic cells or collectors):
- Change the orientation of the modules. Moving elements relative to the position of the sun. Simply put, the installation of the main part of the panels on the south side. With a long daylight, it is also optimal to use the surfaces facing east and west.
- Tilt angle adjustment. The manufacturer usually indicates which angle is most preferable (for example, 45º), but sometimes during installation one has to make his own adjustments taking into account the geographical latitude.
- The correct choice of installation location. The roof fits because it is most often the highest plane and is not obscured by other objects (say, garden trees). But there are even more suitable areas - turning devices for tracking the sun.
When the elements are perpendicular to the sun's rays, the system works more efficiently, however on a stable fixed surface (for example, a roof) this is possible only for a short period of time. To increase it, they invented practical tracking devices.
Tracking mechanisms are dynamic platforms that rotate in their wake following the sun. Thanks to them, generator performance increases in the summer by about 35-40%, in winter - by 10-12%
A big disadvantage of tracking devices is their high cost. In some cases, it does not pay off, so it makes no sense to invest in useless mechanisms.
It is estimated that 8 panels is the minimum amount at which costs will justify themselves over time. You can use 3-4 modules, but under one condition: if they are directly, bypassing the batteries, they are connected to a water pump.
Just the other day, Tesla Motors announced the creation of a new type of roof - with integrated solar panels. Ilon Mask said that a modified roof would be cheaper than a regular roof with headers or modules installed on it.
Conclusions and useful video on the topic
Thematic videos will help you to better present the device of home solar stations and reveal some secrets of equipment installation.
Video # 1. Available technical information about solar batteries and charge controllers:
Video # 2. Useful experience of using solar panels in the Moscow region:
Video # 3. An example of a successfully operating solar station, fully assembled on its own, providing both hot water supply and home heating:
As you can see, the solar-powered heating system is a very real phenomenon that you can independently bring to life. The sphere of alternative ways of obtaining energy is constantly evolving; perhaps tomorrow you will hear about a new discovery.
We invite you to actively comment on the material. Express your attitude to the “green energy”, share your experience in building a system of solar panels, tell you only the known subtleties in the block below.