Using Passive Solar Energy in Industry

Using passive solar energy in industry utilizes sunlight to provide heating and cooling of water and air with out the use of any mechanical aid. Once the system is in place it is extremely efficient and relatively maintenance free. However, the success of a passive system is largely based on the location of the sun relative to your facility and the design of your building. The altitude of the sun at particular times of the day and year as well as the geographical location of your site is each critically important variable in maximizing the performance of passive solar energy systems. An example of the merging of the environment with the design of your facility would be the use of a solarium that can provide critical floor space as well as house energy containment units. In a lobby situation energy can be contained in aesthetically pleasing vessels such as rock walls; whereas a clear ceiling warehouse may be better fitted with less attractive steel or polymer containers. Other systems put function over form and look a lot like the large black solar-electric panels fitted to roofs of buildings and homes.

 

Using Passive Solar Energy in Industry: popular uses

Passive solar energy systems can be utilized to efficiently supply energy for heating and cooling your facility. Heat can be collected and stored throughout the day and then ventilated through your facility at nigh when the temperature drops. Similarly, water can be heated throughout the day and contained in storage units until it is called upon for use in your facility. In fact passive solar water heaters generate more power than those used for generating electricity. Passive systems store the suns heat directly and do waste the energy required to convert light into electricity.

Using Passive Solar Energy in Industry: super efficient

Because there is no energy lost, passive systems are an excellent way to capture the solar energy needed for heating and cooling water and air. However, it is often necessary to couple the cooling aspect of a passive system with a dehumidification system to remove the associated moisture in the air if used for the ambient climate of work areas. Machines generally can not affected but humans are generally more comfortable in lower humidity environments. For general climate control, passive systems will require at least 1/3 of the total footprint of your facility; but may require much more for industrial applications.

Passive solar systems are best if put in place during the design phase of your facility. Systems that are added to existing structures are generally more expensive to install and less efficient. Using passive solar energy in industry is an effective way to harness the sun’s energy for climate control, water heating, and industrial applications.

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