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RE: [hreg] Updated bookmark file/water pumps

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  • Robert Johnston
    In Vol. II of his Earthship design series, Michael Reynolds describes various system components for his home designs, including solar water systems of a
    Message 1 of 7 , Jan 21, 2003
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      In Vol. II of his "Earthship" design series, Michael Reynolds describes
      various system components for his home designs, including solar water
      systems of a variety of types. If interested in various solutions, I
      encourage you to look at the book (Solar Survival Press, ISBN
      0-9626767-1-3). According to Reynolds, the problem with conventional
      well pumps is that: (1) they pump water all the way from the pump to the
      pressured water lines, which takes a lot of power; (2) they require
      additional electricity when they first start up, which they do often
      during the day as they cycle on and off to meet water demands. These
      are the kinds of problems that James Ferrill is no doubt alluding to.
      Rather than despair, however, you may want to consider Reynolds
      solutions.

      One system he describes allegedly circumvents these problems by
      replacing the single conventional large pump with 2 small solar-powered
      DC pumps. The system is this:

      1. Submersible solar-powered DC pump #1 at the bottom of the well,
      pumping water up to a...
      2. Cistern. The cistern can be above ground or buried.
      3. Solar-powered DC pump #2 pumps water from the cistern into a
      pressure tank, which supplies the house.

      According to Reynolds, battery storage isn't necessary because the
      cistern is filled during the day when the sun is shining. "The pump can
      be very small because it doesn't have to produce waterline pressure from
      deep in the well. It simply has to trickle water into the cistern all
      day long. The water is then pumped from the cistern into a conventional
      pressure tank which pressurizes the water lines for domestic use. This
      pump is DC and also is much smaller and uses less electricity than the
      conventional AC pump deep in the well. Therefore, this method reduces
      the amount of electricity used every time water is needed as the two
      small pumps use much less electricity than the one large pump." (p. 32)
      Note that pump #2 is the only one that would draw off batteries (e.g.,
      at night), assuming the cistern is filled during the day.

      He describes other systems that are variants of this one. E.g.,
      rainwater catch systems to supplement it, or cisterns up a hill from the
      house so that gravity replaces the 2nd pump, etc.

      Hope this helps,

      Robert Johnston



      > -----Original Message-----
      > From: James Ferrill [mailto:jtferr@...]
      > Sent: Monday, January 20, 2003 10:35 PM
      > To: hreg@yahoogroups.com
      > Cc: noyesliv@...
      > Subject: Re: [hreg] Updated bookmark file
      >
      > Noyes,
      >
      > Mike's right about the small pond pumps. You can set up a simple PV
      panel
      > directly running a small DC pump and it will work well. Those pumps
      are
      > small enough where nothing more than a panel is needed.
      >
      > Larger pumps are a different story. I once looked into what it would
      take
      > to solar power something like a hot tub or pool pump and the amount of
      > power required is substantial. Plus, the systems are complex because
      you
      > have to have something that can handle the surge draw that a pump
      would
      > take. From everything I've read, even water pumping from a simple well
      has
      > been a challenge for many offgrid folks. Quite a few power the house
      with
      > a
      > PV system and will have a generator just to run the well pump and as
      the
      > backup supply.
      >
      > If you are connected to the grid, the best way to get the most energy
      and
      > use out of PV panels is to use a grid-intertie setup. You won't save
      any
      > money, but it will be greener energy, and you won't need batteries or
      > related support equipment.
      >
      > Google can provide tons of info:
      >
      http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&q=solar+water+pumpi
      ng
      >
      > Also, panel prices are continuing to slowly come down. You can get an
      idea
      > at this site: http://www.ecobusinesslinks.com/solar_panels.htm
      >
      > Hope that helps.
      >
      > James Ferrill
      >
      > At 08:27 PM 1/14/2003, noyes livingston wrote:
      > >thank you very much for the links
      > >I am a school teacher ( math ) and since I live < 2
      > >miles from where I work, I am thinking about buying an
      > >electric bike to practice what I preach. I chose the
      > >link about Currie technologies! Thanks
      > >
      > >I have a paricular interest in two things
      > >1) writing a grant to educate children (and adults)
      > >on PV technology and other renewables so that I can
      > >build a solar powered waterfall at our school and use
      > >it as a piece of art that is pleasing to look at and
      > >hear, as well as an educational demonstration. How do
      > >I start and where would I begin?
      > >
      > >2) I have some pool pumps that I would like to take
      > >off the grid and reduce some of my summer bills by
      > >creating a simple circuit to run the pumps from PV
      > >can it be done and how?
      > >
      > >I appreciate any feedback and I look foward to meeting
      > >some of you at the meeting at TSU
      > >
      > >Noyes Livingston
      > >noyesliv@...
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to
      http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
      >
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