Solar Electricity Generation Calculations | Eco House Design | Part 7

Solar Electricity Generation | Renewable Energy Sources

Solar Panels (Photovoltaic Cells) can be used to convert solar energy into DC current, which is then fed into an inverter to convert it into usable AC current to power a dwelling. A generation meter unit shows how much power is being generated by the solar panels. Power generated by PV cells varies with the time of day and weather. In this waste house project, the architect has provided an excellent location on the south side to install solar panels.


Energy generated with the help of solar panels

In the southeast UK, the average sunshine hours per day is 4.8 hours. For a passive house design, the average energy required is 15 kWh per square meter per year. In this project, the waste house has a total area of 108.64 square meters, which puts the total electricity required in a year of about 1630 kWh. If we calculate electricity required per day, we come to 1630/365 = 4.47 kWh per day.

So, if we can generate and store solar energy for 4.8 hours a day (Climate and temperature, 2012) , at a solar power generation capacity of 1 kW, we can generate up to 4.8 kWh of electricity per day, which could be sufficient.

The low carbon house has a large roof area on the southern face, of more than 30 square meters, which could be used to generate excess electricity. We could install PV array of up to 28 square meters to generate solar power of about 4 kW. Excess electricity generated could be fed into the grid under the feed-in tariff (FiT) scheme.

Average Monthly supply of the solar PVs of 4 kW installed

Winter (kWh) Spring (kWh) Summer (kWh) Autumn (kWh)
140 430 520 270

Below are the steps to designing a low carbon house:

Eco House Design : Part 1

Introduction to the Eco House Design Guide

Design Methodology : Part 2
Eco House Design: Part 3

  • Climate of Brighton and Hove
  • Orientation of the building
  • Building design, construction and low energy specifications
 Eco House Design : Part 4

  • Insulation: Active Thermal Insulation
  • Roof Design
Eco House Design: Part 5

  • Windows and skylights;
  • Door air-gaps
  • Airtightness
  • Thermal Bridging
  • Monthly Energy Demand Profiles
Eco House Design : Renewable Energy Sources| Part 6

Ground Source Heat pump

 Eco House Design : Renewable Energy Sources| Part 7

Solar Electricity Generation

Eco House Design : Renewable Energy Sources| Part 8

  • Rainwater harvesting system
  • Mechanical Ventilation with Heat Recovery

Eco House Design : Renewable Energy Sources| Part 9

Annual Energy Balance

Eco House Design : Part 10 | Conclusion

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