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Solar thermal consultant needed.

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Posted by AstickfortheMULE on July 13, 2006, 5:54 am
Hi.  We are in the process of building our SIP house.  Classic tudor,
Capital Hill Seattle.

The shed dormer faces due south, pitch of 25 degrees.  It is around 500
square feet.  I have already built and insulated a 5000 gallon tank,
stuck in the dirt.

I am planning on using water to water heat pump with gas back up to
heat DHW and radiant heating.

I need help with help with collector design.

My plan is to use a variant of Energie Solaires collector.  I plan on
using 2 sheets of 18 guage aluminum (5'x12') that are seperated by
approximately 1/4" with silicone beeds and the edges sealed with
silicone and riveted.  The water will either trickle down from the top,
or pumped out from the bottom.  There will be a header on the top and
bottom in the plates.

This will be low temperature, unglazed collector.  I have thought long
and hard about the many different options.  For the price,
construction, appearance, I think this is the best option for me.

Total cost of these materials is around $,500.

I hope to have someone that I can brainstorm with and help work through
problems such as supply lines, pumps, heat exchangers, etc.

I am not afraid to pay professional rates.

Eric Friedland,


Posted by DJ on July 13, 2006, 11:06 am

AstickfortheMULE wrote:

Asimov "Foundation" fan are we? ;-)

If you're talking USD, you do know that you can buy some really nice
commercial ones for less than that, depending on the size of collector
you want?


Posted by Jeff on July 13, 2006, 3:10 pm
 AstickfortheMULE wrote:

What temperature does your radiant heating need? What will be your
daytime winter outdoor temp? Unglazed collectors will perform poorly at
wide differences between working temps and ambient.


I can't find that in enough english to find the collector design. Google
  translation didn't translate anything!

  I plan on

Sounds to me like a leak waiting (perhaps not long) to happen. Pumped up
will yield much better thermal transfer from the fin to the fluid as the
contact area will be greater. Trickle down will be less likely to leak.

How do you connect the "header" to the fin?

Consider something more conventional with the fluid in tubing.

You can model it with this:
<URL: http://sel.me.wisc.edu/codepro/new_codepro.html  >

Look around: <URL: http://builditsolar.com  />

Also read the archives of this group. I've been hashing out the design
and materials for some time and the answers to my questions (and others)
may prove helpfull. As well as all the answers to plumbing and pumps
that you will find.

At this point, drain back systems are the way to go. You can do without
the heat exchanger for heating and will only need it for domestic hot water.


Posted by Mike on July 13, 2006, 9:53 pm

I don't think aluminium sheet will last for many years when subjected to
heated oxygenated water, it will develop pinholes and leak.


Posted by Iain McClatchie on July 23, 2006, 8:42 am
 Can you give us any details of your 5000 gallon solar cistern?

- What was the build cost?
- What kind of insulation did you use?  Did you insulate the bottom?
Is the insulation inside or outside the structure?  Suppliers?  If EPS
foam, what density and did you seal the cracks between the foam?
- What sort of structure?  Poly tank?  Shotcrete?  Concrete blocks?
- Did you use a liner?  What kind?  Supplier?
- In ground, partially buried, above ground?
- What sort of top?
- What loads is the top designed to carry?  Did you have to mark the
top in some special way, or provide physical security to keep people
from walking on it?

Details on these things are hard to find, and we're closing in on
building ours.

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