Jun

13

Step out: Feel power of passive solar heating and daylighting

Solar energy is a renewable source of energy available in plenty of amounts. With increasing awareness, many new buildings are designed to use most sunlight so that they can complete the energy requirements. According to a press release, this natural resource is used as passive solar heating and daylighting.

Heating: The concepts of south-facing buildings are in progress and many are on construction phases. One reason is that these buildings receive most sunlight. Therefore, they have large south-facing windows that store utmost sunlight. These buildings use materials that can store and absorb the sun’s heat. The sunlit floors and walls have characteristics to heat up fast and release heat in slow rate at night. This type of passive solar design feature is known as the direct gain.

Another kind of passive solar heating design feature involves the sun spaces and trombe walls. The sun space works on the phenomena of the greenhouse effects. It is built on the south-facing buildings, which receive most sunlight. When sunlight strikes on glasses or other glazing surfaces, the sunspace starts warming up. The well-equipped ventilation helps to circulate heat in the entire building.

The trombe wall is made up of materials that absorbs a lot of the sun’s heat. It is a very thick, black painted wall, which can stock up plenty of heat during day. To hold plenty of heat, the pane of glass or plastic glazing is installed in front of walls. As soon as the structure cools during night, it releases heat inside the building.

Daylighting: The passive solar heating helps to bright those areas that don’t receive sunrays. This can light up building’s interior especially north-facing rooms and upper levels.

One limitation is that solar heating and daylighting turn into a problem during summer. However, some designs help to keep passive solar buildings cool in the summer. For example, windows can be covered by overhangs during the hot summer to prevent overheating of the buildings. To cut excess heating, the sunspaces can be removed from the building. The building can be remodeled to use fresh-air ventilation in the summer.

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