Solar Thermal Technology
Solar Thermal energy is a form of energy and a technology is a process of harnessing solar energy to generate thermal energy for use in residential, industry and commercial sectors. Solar thermal system is a best way to satisfy heating needs by capturing the thermal energy of the sun for heating applications. Solar thermal technology is very helpful, especially in the countries like Nepal where rural area face power cuts very often. So to overcome this issue and to make Nepal a better place we must use solar energy which absolutely free.
Solar Thermal Technology Applications
- Solar Cooker: Solar cooking is a technology which has been given a lot of attention in recent years in developing countries. The basic design is that of a box with a glass cover. The box is lined with insulation and a reflective surface is applied to concentrate the heat onto the pots. The pots can be painted black to help with heat absorption. The solar radiation raises the temperature sufficiently to boil the contents in the pots. Cooking time is often a lot slower than conventional cooking stoves but there is no fuel cost. This cooking technology is being popular now-a-day on rural areas and frozen area where fuel and woods are rarely available. Nepal Government has also launched subsidies program to grand the access of solar cooker at such places.
- Solar Dryer: Solar dryer is required to dry various crops and products, such as grain, coffee, tobacco, fruits vegetables and fish. Solar thermal technology can be used to assist with the drying of such products. The main principle of operation is to raise the heat of the product, which is usually held within a compartment or box, while at the same time passing air through the compartment to remove moisture. The size and shape of the compartment varies depending on the product and the scale of the drying system. Large systems can use large barns while smaller systems may have a few trays in a small wooden housing. Solar crop drying technologies can help reduce environmental degradation caused by the use of fuel wood or fossil fuels for crop drying and can also help to reduce the costs associated with these fuels and hence the cost of the product. Helping to improve and protect crops also has beneficial effects on health and nutrition.
- Solar Space Heating: A solar space heater collects the sun’s energy by a solar collector
and directs the energy into a “thermal mass” for storage and later can be used when required. A thermal mass can be a masonry wall, floor or any storage drum used specifically to absorb and store the energy. Many systems involve a distribution system and control devices to circulate the heat throughout the space and to prevent loss from the collector area. These systems may be combined with a solar hot water system and sized to accommodate both uses. Solar space heaters are more economical when it replaces an electrical heating systems.
- Solar Water Heating: A solar water heating system uses the sun’s energy collected by a flat-plate solar collector or evacuated tube collector and transfers the heat to water flowing through tubes. Hot water is then collected on tank reservoir and is then drawn through it when needed inside home or for industrial purpose. This system usually replaces an existing electric or gas hot water system to reduce your utility bill and provide approximately 40-70% of your household’s annual hot water needs. Either flat plate or evacuated tube technology is used for solar water heating system
Flat Plate Technology Vacuum Tube Technology