Solar Technologies use the sun's energy to provide electricity, hot water, process heat and cooling. Solar power presently provides less than 1% of U.S. energy needs but this is expected to increase with the development of more efficient solar technologies.
Solar level and flow applications
- HEAT TRANSFER FLUID STORAGE: Large-scale solar collectors for electric power generation require a heat transfer fluid (water, thermal oils, or ionic liquids) to absorb the sun’s heat for generating steam. Arrays of mirrored panels convert the sun’s energy into +750° F (+400° C) thermal energy that’s hot enough to create steam for turbines. The mirrors focus sunlight onto pipes of heat transfer fluid that run along the mirror’s centerline. The fluid then boils water to produce steam. Thermal fluids also help provide hot water and heat. Thermal fluids are typically stored in pressurized tanks that require
- HOT WATER STORAGE: High-temperature solar water heaters provide energy-efficient hot water and heat for large industrial facilities. Thermal storage in buffer tanks provide interfaces between collector subsystems and energy-using systems. The preferred solar storage vessel is a vertical cylindrical tank designed for the maximum pressure of the supply water source, which may be as high as 150 psi.
- PUMP PROTECTION: Flow Switches protect pumps from damage due to leaks or if a valve is accidentally closed downstream. A flow switch will actuate an alarm and shut down the pump when flow drops below the minimum rate.