Friday, 21 June 2013

DIY Solar

Even if a traditional solar PV system is outside of your budget, or your state has no incentives or big market barriers to solar, you can still take advantage of solar energy with a Do-It-Yourself (DIY) solar project. Creative people are using solar to tackle problems large and small across the globe!

DIYing a solar system can be a chance to learn more about how the technology works, experiment with a new design, or go solar for a fraction of the cost. There are hundreds of DIY solar project options, ranging from putting together a simple DIY solar charger to installing a complete system, or even building a solar panel from scratch!

There are also groups of solar enthusiasts all over the country that are building their own solar systems.  Some groups partner with solar installers, offer discounts on materials, and loans on tools and equipment for members to use while installing their systems.

DIY projects are also a great way to build an organization, educate students and engage your neighbors about solar. It is a great tool for building the renewable energy movement from the ground up!

For Ex: Solar space and  Water Heating System
This DIY system is a system that provides both solar space and water heating in a single system.
The Solar Space Heating section has solar water and air heating systems with and without storage -- some 87 projects.
The Solar Water Heating section provides many DIY builds for solar water heating systems including batch, thermosyphon, drain back, and closed loop systems, solar showers, solar stock tanks, kits, ...  117 projects and ideas.

Planning the Solar Electric System

The first step to planning your system is to evaluate rebate options and obtain permits. Your local power utility has rules you must follow when you hook the finished system to the grid, and building codes may also apply. In addition to federal incentives, states (and even some cities) offer rebates to help with the cost of the system. Understanding the local rules before you start will save you frustration later.

Most utilities will have an information package and a person who specializes in the utility requirements. We found our local utility and code inspectors helpful and friendly. We didn’t pick up a hint of resistance from them regarding the idea of a homeowner-installed PV system. Permit costs and turnaround times were small. Check the Database of State Incentives for Renewable and Efficiency (DSIRE) for information on rebates in your state.

Deciding the size of your system is the next step. With a grid-tied system, size is less critical, because the grid supplies power when your PV system falls short. Systems as small as a couple hundred watts are practical, but you can also install panels that will produce enough electricity for all your needs. Review how much electricity you use now, and then estimate what you will be able to save by applying conservation and efficiency measures throughout your home. This will give you an idea of how big a system you’ll want to build. You certainly can build a system smaller than this, but it may not pay to install a larger one. Look up your state on DSIRE to learn about net metering rules where you live, including how much you can get paid for generating excess power.

Figuring out ways to use less energy in your home is almost always more cost effective than putting up a larger PV array. We started with a monthly usage of 1,000 kilowatt-hours (kwh), which is about average for a U.S. household. We got this down to about 500 kwh by spending a bit more than $1,000 on efficient lights, power strips with switches, a new fridge and a few other strategies (see 8 Easy Projects for Instant Energy Savings). Compare that with the PV system, which saves us 250 kwh per month but costs $6,000 — it’s clear where the best return is. Take the efficiency measures first, then buy the PV system.

What this all does is that it makes your cost cutting a lot easier that it will surely make you happy. Many of the people in the world are going green so Go Green by using the most abundant energy on earth and also by doing so you will surely make mother earth somewhat happy!!!!

Thursday, 13 June 2013

Solar Water Heater

The solar water heater comes in wide variety of designs; all of the available designs include a collector and a storage tank. It basically uses the Sun’s thermal energy to heat water. These are basically categorized according to the type of collector and the circulation system. A collector is a device for converting the energy in sunlight, or solar radiation, into a more usable or storable form. This energy is in the form of electromagnetic radiation from the infrared (long) to the ultraviolet (short) wavelengths. The quantity of solar energy striking the Earth's surface averages about 1,000 watts per square meter under clear skies, depending upon weather conditions, location, and orientation of the surface.

Collector Types

Solar collectors fall into two general categories: non-concentrating and concentrating. In the non-concentrating type, the collector area (i.e., the area that intercepts the solar radiation) is the same as the absorber area (i.e., the area absorbing the radiation). In these types the whole solar panel absorbs the light.

Flat-plate and evacuated-tube solar collectors are used to collect heat for space heating, domestic hot water or cooling with an absorption chiller.

Batch collectors:

These are also called as integrated collector storage (ICS) systems. These collectors basically include an tube with an insulated box or a dark tank that is basically makes this collector a storage of water for a long period of times, if the demand of water for the family is low, also making the water Very Hot.
This system is also fitted with a tempering value that becomes your savior against extremely hot water before it is delivered to your tap.
These collectors are generally not recommended for cold climates as they are in compatible with closed loop circulation systems.

Flat Plate Collectors:

These Collectors mainly consists of copper tubes that are fitted to flat absorber plates. The most common configurations a series of parallel tubes connected at each end by two pipes, the inlet and the outlet manifolds. The flat plate assembly is contained within an insulated box and covered with tempered glass.
Flat plate collectors are created mainly to contain nearly 40 gallons of water. Two collectors provide roughly half of the water needed to serve a family of four. These types of collectors are the most common types. The main use of this technology is in solar kits of residential buildings where the demand for hot water has a large impact on energy bills.

Evacuated tube collectors:

Evacuated tube collectors are the most efficient collectors available. Each evacuated tube is similar to a thermos in principle. A glass or metal tube containing the water or heat transfer fluid is surrounded by a larger glass tube. The space between them is a vacuum, so very little heat is lost from the fluid. The vacuum that surrounds the outside of the tube greatly reduces convection and conduction heat loss to the outside, therefore achieving greater efficiency than flat-plate collectors, especially in colder conditions. This advantage is largely lost in warmer climates, except in those cases where very hot water is desirable, for example commercial process water. The high temperatures that can occur may require special system design to prevent overheating.

Circulation Systems


Direct systems circulate water through solar collectors where it is heated by the sun. The heated water is then stored in a tank, sent to a tank less water heater, or used directly. These systems are preferable in climates where it rarely freezes. Freeze protection is necessary in cold climates.

Closed Loop:

Closed-loop, or indirect, systems use a non-freezing liquid to transfer heat from the sun to water in a storage tank. The sun's thermal energy heats the fluid in the solar collectors. Then, this fluid passes through a heat exchanger in the storage tank, transferring the heat to the water. The non-freezing fluid then cycles back to the collectors. These systems make sense in freezing climates.


Active, or forced-circulation, systems use electric pumps, valves and controllers to move water from the collectors to the storage tank. These are common in the U.S.


Passive systems require no pumps. Natural convection moves water from the collectors to the storage tank as it heats up.

Monday, 10 June 2013

Cleanest Source of energy- Solar Energy

The most clean and pure source of energy is Sun or rather The Solar Energy . This source as we all know is literally unlimited and its uses too are unlimited but we sadly have not been able to harness this incredible energyto its full potential !!! This energy's application's is so vast that it has the capability of replacing any and all other energy resources, for ex: electricity, water heater  or basically power anything etc .

Yes we have harnessed it to some decent level like converting solar energy into electricity to power our cities (to some level) by using the photovoltaic cells. Most of the solar power infromation sources state this method as being the most popular of all the methods. Usually these cells are placed at the roof to collect rays from the sun. These rays are transformed later on to DC current electricity and then transformed to AC current using a converter. The generated electricity can be used directly or stored for later use.

The size of photovoltaic cells to be used varies with the intended use of the system. Solar power information guides provide assistance as to the optimal size of these cells is. These cells are put together in a solar panel, that together gather the solar energy, generally using these panels alone is not practical therefor these are used in harmony in solar kits to optimize the total energy produced for the occupied space this is a good process and currently is most popular .

The total energy that is produced is modified by the parabolic mirrors. The parabolic mirrors are used to concentrate the sun rays into specific cell which will be responsible of generating solar energy.

Then there is another way that the solar energy is used is called solar thermal energy. This method uses a collector to capture the heat from the sun. The heat that is captured by the collector is used to provide hot water to the residence. Thus the use of such system is limited to generating hot water. Next to air heating, hot water is considered by most solar power information sources as the most source of electricity consumption.

So we can say that we are safely on our way to cleaner energy that will make our planet more beautiful . So contribute now !!

Source: Solar kits