Each hour the earth receives more energy than the world can use in a full year. Out of this abundance of incoming energy, South Africa has one of the highest levels of solar radiation in the world.
The solar radiation of South Africa ranges from around 1450 kWh/m2 to about 1950 kWh/m2 per year, compared to Europe which on average is 910kWh/m2 per year.
Today’s technology allows us to use and convert this freely available resource to serve our energy needs, such as water heating thereby Cutting Electricity Costs and assisting in Greening the Environment.
Vacuum Tube Solar Geysers
- New technology for South Africa, but used extensively in Europe for many years and ideal for our climate.
- Water Temperature can reach 90 degrees Centigrade and can withstand temperatures well below -30 degrees Centigrade. Therefore eliminates Freezing issues experienced by outdated Flat Plate Technology, hence no longer requires Ongoing Maintenance.
- Optional back-up electrical element ensures you will have hot water during rainy and Adverse Weather Conditions and at same time ensuring you will always have Hot Water.
- Pleasing appearance. Can be mounted on flat or pitched roof.
- Expected Lifespan of vacuum tubes: 15 to20 years
- Saves an average of 40 % of a normal household Electricity Bill (Pay-Back period, only 2 ½ to 3 years )
- Good investment. Payback period 21/2 to 3 years. Thereafter saves up to 50% electricity on your household bill and helps save the environment.
- Uses thermosiphon principle for circulation of water in vacuum tubes. Does not require additional Circulating Pump.
How to choose a Solar Heater
There are 3 applications commonly used:
- High Pressure Solar heaters
- Low Pressure Solar Heaters
- Split Solar hot water System
High Pressure Solar Heater System
- Most suited for Urban areas which have a high water pressure source available.
- Working pressure for High Pressure Solar Geysers is 4 Bar (Kpa) …..(Water pressure outlet for Hot Water will be the same as the Incoming Pressure)
- Can be installed as a Pre-Heater to existing geyser or as stand-alone (recommended for first time geyser/s e.g. for new home.)
- As Stand-Alone, a Back-Up Element can be installed to cater for Poor Solar Weather (this guarantees you`ll always have a minimum temperature that Thermostat is set to)
- As a Pre-Heater, does not require a Back-Up Element as existing Electric Geyser Element fulfils this need.
- Due to the Heat Pipe Technology, There is no water inside the Vacuum Tubes. So even if a Vacuum Tubes is broken, no water can leak out.
Apollo Low Pressure Solar Water Heating System
- Most suited for Rural areas* and where the water supply pressure is low (2Bar or less)
- The “Low Pressure” refers to the outlet pressure which is determined by Gravity. (the higher above ground level the solar geyser is situated, the greater the Outlet Pressure)
* Can be used in urban areas as well, though Shower Pressure will be a lot lower.
- This system has a small Filler Tank with Float Valve fitted. The inlet water supply enters the Filler Tank which feeds the main solar storage tank and switches off by means of the float valve when full.
- The Low pressure Geysers cost a lot less than the High Pressure geysers and some models have provision for a Back-Up Element to be fitted.
Apollo Split Solar Geyser System
- This consists of a number of evacuated tubes (1per10 L of water to be heated) The tubes are contained within a metal frame and manifold which house the tubes to form a Panel
- The panel is connected across an existing electric geyser .
- A circulating pump is fitted and circulates water from Geyser Tank though the Panel Manifold and back to geyser tank. Water is heated as it flows through the manifold.
- The Vacuum Tubes contain copper Heat Pipes which contain a Heat Transfer Liquid which vaporises and flows to the uppermos tips of the heat pipes which are plugged into the manifold and heat it up to a high degree.
- Due to the Heat Pipe Technology, There is no water inside the Vacuum Tubes. So even if a pipe is broken, no water can leak out.
- The main advantage of this Split System is, aesthetically, it is more pleasing. The storage tank is situated below the roof.
- The Circulating Pump may be connected to the 220volt mains supply or can have its own Solar panel to run it independently of the Mains Power Supply.
- With this system it is not possible to increase the Hot Water Storage Capacity