Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Good Energy Case Study

24 August: I had a call from the press office of Good Energy, our electricity supplier. They do regular write-ups of case studies of customers. I think it will be written up on their Green Energy Republic webpage, a great source of inspiration for energy aficionados.

     It's a good time for GE to call because it is just after I calculated our annual income+saving at the end of the first year of the PV. The home generation is likely to be 3,200 kWh by 1 October, and our electricity savings likely to be 2,450 kWh. A normal household would expect to save 50%, i.e. about 1,600 kWh a year. As an electrically heated household, our ration of Using to Selling is higher, so we benefit more from the PV than the average user.

She also wanted to know about the Sunbox research, as the blog had been a main source of information and illustrations. In the electricity-only future, the heat pump will the most energy efficient method of heating with electricity, so the research and development with Sunboxes could be significant for making future heat pump installations more practical. As Blaise is in Shanghai at the SET 2010 conference with my research project poster right now, it is a good time to be discussing it!
    The idea of injecting solar heat is, to me, a no-brainer - how could anybody disagree as long as the technology is not too complex, and the running cost not exceeding the gain? The Sunboxes cost a small fraction of the cost of the borehole, and produce a third of the annual requirement for heat from the ground!
   For our proposed development in Surrey, with over 50 sun-seeking houses, plus some offices and shops, we have the backing of the developer to make them all with GSHP and Sunbox technology.
   I also told Claire about the german Passivhaus concept, and our Masters course in Sustainable Tall Buildings - outlined our plans for next semester to design a residential skyscraper in New York extrapolating the Passivhaus concept to the vertical as a participant in the Isover competition. We hope that our scheme will be on show at EcoBuild in 2011. (and those students had better be using Sunboxes!!)
   Coming back to Solar PV, she was very interested in the Rushcliffe Solar project, campaigning to encourage residents of Rushcliffe to install PV.

1 Sept: The Article is here, it's as I finalised it, although in its final form on their website it might be slightly shortened. It is about the Solar PV roof and the Surya Sunbox projects.

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