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Solar Energy

Solar energy production can be divided into 2 categories, namely;

  • Solar Thermal Hot Water systems, and
  • Solar Photovoltaic systems.

Solar photovoltaic production uses energy from the sun to generate electricity. requiring daylight to work, not direct sunlight - a common misaprehension.

Photovoltaic cells are usually sited on south facing roofs or walls and contain layers of semi-conductive material. When in day light the semi-conductive material creates an electric current which is then used by the property or alternatively sold to the National Grid. Current statistics would suggest that an average domestic system costs approximately £5,000- £7,500 per KW installed, with most domestic systems usually producing between 1.5 and 3 KW.

Solar thermal hot water systems have been utilised for many years in warmer climates uses the suns energy to heat water. The system can be used along side your existing water heating system and can also have a larger application for example heating swimming pools.

In a domestic situation solar hot water systems can provide approximately a third of the hot water needs while saving money and reducing CO2 emissions with a typical domestic system costing approximately £3,000 - £5,000.

The system has three main components:

  • Solar panels fitted usually to your roof to collect the suns heat,
  • Heat transfer system which uses the collected heat to warm the water, and
  • Hot water cylinder to store the heated water for later use.