Solar water heating (SWH) is the conversion of sunlight into renewable energy for water heating using a solar thermal collector. Solar water heating systems comprise various technologies that are used worldwide increasingly.
In a “close-coupled” SWH system the storage tank is horizontally mounted immediately above the solar collectors on the roof. No pumping is required as the hot water naturally rises into the tank through thermosiphon flow. In a “pump-circulated” system the storage tank is ground- or floor-mounted and is below the level of the collectors; a circulating pump moves water or heat transfer fluid between the tank and the collectors.
Flat Plate Solar Thermal Collector:
Flat plate solar thermal collector is suitable for residential or commercial solar water heating projects.
The flat plate collector features a low profile design (80mm / 3.15″ profile), which combined with ultra-lightweight melamine foam insulation, makes it one of the lightest flat plate panels per m2 on the market.
The TINOX Energy Aluminium absorber sheet absorbs up to 95% of available sunlight converting into usable heat for hot water production.
Evacuated tube collectors:
Evacuated tube collectors (ETC) are a way in which heat loss to the environment, inherent in flat plates, has been reduced. Since heat loss due to convection cannot cross a vacuum, it forms an efficient isolation mechanism to keep heat inside the collector pipes.Since two flat sheets of glass are normally not strong enough to withstand a vacuum, the vacuum is rather created between two concentric tubes. Typically, the water piping in an ETC is therefore surrounded by two concentric tubes of glass with a vacuum in between that admits heat from the sun (to heat the pipe) but which limits heat loss back to the environment. The inner tube is coated with a thermal absorbent. Life of the vacuum varies from collector to collector, anywhere from 5 years to 15 years.