Sustainable Energy Products
Why renewable energy products?
Renewable energy products utilise the earth’s natural resources, those being the sun, water, and organic materials. These natural resources can be used to generate energy, which is sustainable and reusable. Current energy consumption levels can not be sustained from the normal supply of gas and oil, therefore alternative sources need to be identified and harnessed. Renewable energy systems combined with traditional heating equipment can address this issue and reduce carbon emissions along the way.
These renewable energy products are healthier, safer and cost effective. A heat pump, solar system or biomass boiler can reduce your energy consumption bill considerably.
Heat pumps in simple terms convert free natural resources into usable energy. A heat pump can utilise the air, water or ground heat energy and via a heat exchanger deliver it to the heating appliance.
Ground source heat – a series of underground pipes (vertical or horizontal arrangement) filled with a heat transfer liquid are connected to the heat emitter, typically an underfloor heating system. These pipe systems utilise the solar store in the ground, which is rechargeable via the sun. Wet soils offer the optimum efficiencies.
Air – this system extracts heat from outdoor air, passes it via a heat exchanger to produce usable heat energy. This system is the easiest heat pump system to install as it requires no ground work and a small site area hence installation cost savings.
A professionally sized solar system can provide a significant percentage of a buildings annual hot water requirement at zero cost to the user. Solar can be utilised on even the haziest or cloudiest of days but are more efficient during the summer months. Correct orientation and inclination will improve efficiencies. For example a south facing solar panel at the correct angle will get the most out of the solar system. Solar panels are linked to solar cylinders which can store and use hot water on demand.
Normal systems consist of a panel, a pumping system and a hot water tank. A liquid passes through the solar panel which is heated via the sun and heat is transferred to the water tank.
Right: Image of a solar collector
Underfloor heating is fast becoming a favoured option with heating contractors. The system is flexible and cost effective and is increasingly being specified over traditional heating equipment. Underfloor systems can be installed in both old and new buildings under a wide range of floor coverings. Underfloor heating particularly fits well with the new renewable technologies due to its low, slow heat requirement.
Biomass refers to living and recently dead biological material that can be used as fuel. Most commonly, biomass refers to plant matter such as wood in pellet or chipped form, or energy crops such as Miscanthus, but may also include biodegradable wastes that can be burnt as fuel. It excludes organic material which has been transformed by geological processes into substances such as coal or petroleum.
Biomass systems typically consist of a store, a feed and a boiler for burning of the fuel providing the heat source.
Right: Image of a biomass boiler
Rainwater harvesting is the collection and storage of rain from roofs or from a surface catchment for future use. The water is generally stored in rainwater tanks or directed into mechanisms which recharge groundwater. Rainwater harvesting can provide supplemental water, can increase soil moisture levels for urban greenery, and can increase the ground water table through artificial recharge. It can also mitigate urban flooding. Rainwater systems are usually easy to install. The systems usually comprise of a pumping system, piping system combined with a filter.