Saturday, January 5, 2013

Winter Sunbox capture

5 Jan 2013: The Sunbox annual solar capture figure has been lower recently, due to two things. 1. the months of the spring when I had a leak in the system and it was off for a month, and 2. the rainy grey weather that we have suffered from April 2012 to the present day. I sometime regret having changed the profile of the original sunbox from vertical to sloping. The later decision to use ETFE means that I might have been just as well to stay with the vertical fronts, and because there is better solar radiation on the black panels inside, it could have stayed as the two boxes instead of one.
     The peak annual capture of the sunbox system was 3,090 kWh at the start of March 2012 and the worst was 2,419 kWh at the start of December 2012. It is climbing steadily now, and here are some figures that cheer me up. I also have a far more accurate and reliable meter, the Sontex Supercal 440.

[Updated 13 January]
I have been sampling a winter period from 1 December to 13 January in the last three years:
  • 1 Dec 2010 - 12 Jan 2011: 131 kWh
    (with the vertically fronted 6mm single skin Sunbox)
  • 1 Dec 2011 - 12 Jan 2012: 171 kWh
    (with the sloping fronted triple skin Sunbox)
  • 1 Dec 2012 - 12 Jan 2013: 205 kWh
    (with the ETFE fronted Sunbox and 18 kWh from the roof unit.)
It will be a long climb back to the glories of an annual figure of 3,090, but this is a very good start, and let's hope for sunny weather in 2013!

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