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5096Re: Solar hot water -> angled windows

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  • Susan Silvano
    Oct 4, 2006
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      What a cool idea! I'll have to find someone who knows about optics -
      it sounds like it could work....


      On Oct 4, 2006, at 6:42 PM, Ariel Thomann wrote:

      > 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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