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5095Solar hot water -> angled windows

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  • Ariel Thomann
    Oct 4 3:42 PM
      OK, here's my crazy idea, and it's one I haven't seen in any book on passive solar
      design. It goes back to my high-school physics and what I learned there about what
      happens to light when it hits glass. Normally it goes right on through, and that's what
      a window is all about. However, if you get your cheek against a window and look at the
      glass, you will see that a short distance from you it starts acting as a weak mirror,
      and as look at it further away, it acts totally as a mirror and you can't see anything
      on the other side. It's total reflection; check out the following:
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Total_internal_reflection

      It seems to me that if you lean your window outward at the top (probably 10 degree angle
      suffices for your latitude; it will vary slightly depending on type of glass, will also
      be slightly different for UV and IR) it will reflect back out essentially all the direct
      sunlight (thus making your floor OUTside that window very hot...). That angle would be
      for noontime sun on the summer solstice; it would take substantially greater tilt to do
      the job at other times of the year and day. But you might find that your solar heat
      gain goes down a fair bit, at a relatively low cost.

      Side effect: when you look from inside out at night, you will see only ceiling
      reflections. And, oh, looking from outside in at night would be totally transparent
      (but you may need to do something to keep pets, kids and other retards from crashing
      into the glass -- adults too, I guess).

      I'm sure 99% of builders will think it's crazy, so discuss it instead with someone who
      knows optics better than I do. Enjoy.

      Let me know the outcome!

      Ariel
      - We are all Human beings here together. We have to help one another, since otherwise
      there is NO ONE who will help.
      - All countries need a NO REGRETS strategic energy policy. Think ahead 7 generations.
      ------------------------------------

      > Cabana: Double french doors facing west, but with a veranda overhang of about 8
      > feet. Two largish windows facing south, toward the
      > harbor. None east.
      > Kid's house: Lots of windows and a couple of sliding glass doors facing south,
      > toward the harbor, some with verandas. One west, no overhang. Four east, no
      > overhang.
      > Our house: (just starting) Will have eight sliding glass doors
      > facing south, toward the harbor, with six of them under the veranda overhang of 13
      > feet. Five large windows with no overhang. Just two large windows and a glass door
      > facing west. Four windows and a glass door facing east.
      >
      >
      > On Oct 4, 2006, at 5:31 PM, Ariel Thomann wrote:
      >
      >> Do you have any large windows facing West, South, or East?
      >>
      >> Ariel
      >> ------------------------------------
      >>
      >>> In the USVI, we are not required to use solar water heaters, but many people
      >>> do,
      >>> simply because the cost of electricity is so ridiculous. Would you believe
      >>> that the
      >>> kwh just went up to 30 cents in July???
      >>>
      >>> In answer to your question: we bought one 50 gallon solar water heater which
      >>> serves
      >>> the cabana (easily). The cost was 1895.00, and the rebate was 700.00. We also
      >>> bought two 80 gallon water heaters; they were 2450.00 each and the rebate on
      >>> this
      >>> size was 850.00 each.
      >>>
      >>> We are now trying to find the most efficient, hurricane resistant and cost
      >>> effective
      >>> way to use solar power for each of the three houses (cabana,
      >>> daughter/son-in-law,
      >>> ours). Any suggestions would be great!
      >>>
      >>> Susan
      >>>
      >>> On Oct 3, 2006, at 1:06 PM, Ariel Thomann wrote:
      >>>
      >>>> Oh, while on the subject of St. Thomas houses, I'd like to re- ignite an earlier
      >>>> 'string'. I understand in most of the Lesser Antilles houses are required to
      >>>> use
      >>>> solar
      >>>> water heaters (since they need to import all their fossil fuels at absurd
      >>>> costs).
      >>>> Is
      >>>> that true for St. Thomas? If so, how much do those systems
      >>>> cost there?
      >>>>
      >>>> Ariel
      >>>> - We are all Human beings here together. We have to help one
      >>>> another, since otherwise
      >>>> there is NO ONE who will help.
      >>>> - All countries need a NO REGRETS strategic energy policy.
      >>>> Think ahead 7
      >>>> generations.
      >>>> ------------------------------------
      >>>>
      >>>>> So, it sounds like you strap them down as tightly as possible, and then you
      >>>>> take
      >>>>> your
      >>>>> chances. From those of you with experience with putting PVs on your roof,
      >>>>> how
      >>>>> does
      >>>>> this affect your insurance?
      >>>>>
      >>>>> Susan, good luck w/ your St. Thomas house. (said w/ a little
      >>>>> envy) Let us know how
      >>>>> it works out. That is a little like hurricane ally.
      >>>>
      >>>>
      >>>>
      >>>>
      >>>>
      >>>> Yahoo! Groups Links
      >>>>
      >>>>
      >>>>
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      >>>>
      >>>>
      >>>>
      >>>>
      >>>>
      >>>
      >>>
      >>>
      >>>
      >>> Yahoo! Groups Links
      >>>
      >>>
      >>>
      >>>
      >>>
      >>>
      >>>
      >>
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      > Yahoo! Groups Links
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