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Domestic hot water (DHW)

Domestic hot water (DHW)

One of the applications of solar thermal energy is the obtaining of sanitary hot water (ACS). Solar collectors capture the energy of solar radiation to increase the temperature of a fluid.

Domestic hot water (DHW) is water intended for human consumption (potable) that has been heated. It is used for sanitary uses (bathrooms, showers, etc.) and for other cleaning uses (washing dishes, washing machine, dishwasher, floor scrubbing). In terms of energy, the ACS is an important component to take into account, since it represents between 25 and 40% of the energy consumption of homes.

As a general rule, it consists of: the water heater, circulation pump, pipes, flow meters, valves for…

Last review: October 15, 2018

Advantages of solar energy

Advantages of solar energy

Solar energy allows to take advantage of the energy that comes from solar radiation. One way to take advantage of sunlight is to convert the radiation into electrical energy (photovoltaic solar energy) or thermal energy (solar thermal energy). Photovoltaic solar energy requires a chemical process to obtain a continuous current, while solar thermal energy only requires a thermodynamic process.

The characteristics of solar energy imply certain advantages with respect to other sources of energy. Mainly if the other sources of energy are non-renewable energies that come from fossil fuels. But even if solar energy is compared with other sources of renewable energy, some advantages can also…

Last review: October 5, 2018

Solar energy

Solar energy

The term solar energy refers to the use of the energy that comes from the Sun. It is a type of renewable energy. The energy contained in the Sun is so abundant that it is considered inexhaustible. The Sun takes 5 billion years emitting solar radiation and it is estimated that it has not yet reached 50% of its existence.

Solar energy, in addition to being inexhaustible is abundant: the amount of energy that the Sun pours daily on Earth is ten thousand times greater than that consumed per day in the entire planet. The received radiation…

Last review: October 2, 2018

Geothermal heat pump

Geothermal heat pump

The geothermal heat pump is an air conditioning system for buildings that exploits the heat exchange with the superficial subsoil, by means of a heat pump. Since the heat in the subsoil comes largely from the interior of the Earth, geothermal energy of low enthalpy is classified as a source of renewable energy, although the heat pump itself consumes electricity, generally produced from other sources of energy (for example, fossil fuels).

The heat pump allows the exchange of heat between a "source" at a lower temperature than the "well", or the point where the heat is introduced. In a heating system, the building (more precisely: the circuit of the heating terminals of the building)…

Last review: September 27, 2018

Ampere

Ampere

The ampere (symbol: A) is the base unit SI that is used to measure the intensity of the electric current.

It takes its name from the French physicist André-Marie Ampère (1775-1836), one of the leading scholars of electromagnetism.

Being one of the seven basic SI units, all other electromagnetic units are derived from it. By definition, an ampere is the intensity of an electric current that, if maintained in two parallel linear conductors of infinite length and negligible cross-section, placed one meter apart from each other in a vacuum, produces an equal force between them to 2 × 10 -7 N…

Last review: September 7, 2018

History of solar energy

History of solar energy

Within the history of solar energy, in one form or another, solar energy has always been present in the life of the planet being this imprescidible for the development of life. However, the way in which human civilization has exploited it invented new strategies and tools has undergone a long evolution.

The Sun is indispensable for the existence of life on the planet: it is responsible for the water cycle, photosynthesis, etc. Already the first civilizations realized this and, as civilizations have evolved, they have also evolved techniques to harness their energy. At the beginning they were techniques to take advantage of passive solar energy, later techniques were developed to take…

Last review: September 4, 2018

Monocrystalline silicon

Monocrystalline silicon

Monocrystalline silicon is the base material for the silicon chips used in practically all current electronic equipment. In the field of solar energy, monocrystalline silicon is also used to manufacture photovoltaic cells due to its ability to absorb radiation.

Monocrystalline silicon consists of silicon in which the crystalline lattice of the entire solid is continuous, does not break at its edges and is free of any grain limit. Monocrystalline silicon can be prepared as an intrinsic semiconductor that is composed only of very pure silicon, or can be doped by the addition of other elements such as boron or phosphorus to make p-type or n-type silicon.

Monocrystalline silicon…

Last review: September 3, 2018

Hybrid system

Hybrid system

Hybrid solar energy systems are hybrid energy systems that combine the solar energy of a photovoltaic system with another source of energy that generates energy. A common type is a hybrid photovoltaic diesel system, which combines solar photovoltaic (PV) and diesel generators, or diesel generator sets, since PV has only a marginal cost and is treated with priority in the network. Diesel generator sets are used to constantly fill the gap between the current load and the actual power generated by the photovoltaic system.

Since the solar energy fluctuates and the generation capacity of the diesel generator sets is limited to a certain range, it is often a viable option to include the…

Last review: August 29, 2018

Hybrid solar panel - PVT

Hybrid solar panel - PVT

A hybrid solar panel (more correctly defined as a PVT collector, an acronym P hoto V oltaic and T hermal) is a device that allows the conversion of the energy radiated by the sun partly into electrical energy and partly into thermal energy through the combination of the effect of a photovoltaic module and a thermal solar panel (photovoltaic cogeneration).

Therefore, a hybrid solar panel is composed of a photovoltaic collector to which a heat exchanger is associated, capable of heating a fluid thanks to the part of the solar radiation not converted into electrical energy.

Origin of hybrid solar panel or PVT

From the origin of the photovoltaic conversion, it has been observed…

Last review: August 29, 2018

Applications of solar thermal energy

Applications of solar thermal energy

Solar thermal energy uses solar radiation to increase the internal energy of an element. Said in one way: to heat an element. Normally a liquid is heated to be able to transport this energy more easily to the place where you want to take advantage of it.

In single-family homes it is very common to see solar collectors. The function of these collectors is to heat sanitary hot water for domestic use or for heating. They are generally support systems but allow considerable financial savings. The installation of these solar collectors is very popular in certain areas due to its low installation cost.

Photovoltaic solar energy, on the other hand, is conceived for the generation of…

Last review: August 29, 2018

Heat. What is it?

Heat. What is it?

In physics, in particular in thermodynamics, heat is defined as the contribution of transformed energy as a result of a chemical or nuclear reaction and transferred between two systems or between two parts of the same system. This energy is not attributable to a job or a conversion between two different types of energy. Heat is, therefore, a form of transferred energy and not a form of energy contained as internal energy.

As the energy is exchanged, the heat is measured in the International System in joules. In practice, however, it is often still used as the unit of measurement of calories, which is defined as the amount of heat necessary to raise the temperature of one gram of distilled…

Last review: August 24, 2018