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Posted by SJC on March 8, 2006, 5:07 am

  Last time I looked at 20 tube collectors they ran more than $,000 =
If you need 10 of these to get a reasonable heat gain for a radiant =
floor system
in a large house, then you are not using $0,000 worth of collectors =
more than
half the year. One of the advantages to PV, you can use them year around.

Posted by Alan on March 8, 2006, 3:08 pm


A Chinese built ten tube evaculative tube system will cost about $,500
(before tax credits), complete with a stainless steel storage tank and
mounting hardware.  PV system is great, but the upfront costs will be
no less than $5,000-, even after all the tax credits, I believe.  PV
won't do well for heating water or for electric radiant floor heating
in terms of cost.  The price of reliable PV and high tech solar water
heating units, would plummet if the western states would simply require
that all new housing development projects include them as the cost of
building a new house.  The cost of suburbanization in terms of the
additional infrustructure of roads and highways, as well as loss of
quality of life for the existing community, suggests to me that this is
a reasonable expectation of the housing development industry.

Posted by SJC on March 8, 2006, 4:34 pm

  I was not suggesting that anyone do heating with PV. I was pointing =
that you may be able to get a faster return on your investment when you
can use the asset more often.

Posted by Robert Scott on March 8, 2006, 4:51 pm

That might be true, all other things being equal.  But they are very un-equal.
The cost of electricity as a fraction of the capital costs of PV is much smaller
than the same ratio when applied to, say, home heating.

Robert Scott
Ypsilanti, Michigan

Posted by SJC on March 8, 2006, 6:46 pm

  No arguement here. I believe that solar thermal is more cost effective
than PV. What I was pointing out is the waste of an expensive resource
that can only be used part of the time. If you can use solar thermal for
"seasonal shifting" by storing heat or using absorption cooling to =
some of the cost, the payback can be better.

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