After consulting with industry professionals and solar installation companies, the PVT Lab team has designed and engineered a low cost system that is quick and simple to install. A concerted effort was made to understand previous issues in the industry and to engineer them out of this system.
CoolsheetTM - A heat exchange panel
The CoolsheetTM (International (PCT) patent application filed) is designed and manufactured by the PVT Lab team. They are light weight, quick and easy to install and fully enclosed within the PV panel frame.
A major focus for the system was to create a cost effective and simple plumbing design that can be easily scaled. As such, large systems can be put together with minimal fuss and labour costs and without expensive fittings.
The CoolsheetTM snaps to the back of most existing PV panels quickly and securely. Although designed to be lightweight, they provide excellent heat transfer efficiency.
PV is generally around 13-20% efficient, but if you capture the thermal energy component as well (40-60%) then this can increase the total energy capture to 53-80% for the same footprint.
The byproduct of cooling a PV panel with cool water is warm water, which can then be used where it’s needed, such as aquatic centres, schools with pools or commercial buildings.
Thermally insulated water tanks (thermal stores), up to 15,000 litres, can be disassembled and rebuilt in previously inaccessible areas, such as on commercial building roof tops. This enables the heat energy to be captured and stored, it can then be used as a pre-heating system before the water enters more conventional heating systems.
Heat pumps are a very efficient way of boosting your water temperature. Water to water and air to water heat pumps can be used, depending on your application. PVT systems can pre-heat water before it enters a heat pump, reducing the amount of energy required to meet the heating demands.
Insulated pipes and manifolds
The PVT Lab manifold connections have a registered design and enable large systems to be built at a low cost. The design keeps system pressures to a minimum while still achieving the desired flow rates.
To ensure that energy loss is kept to a minimum, non-corrosive, UV protected, insulated pipes are used in the PVT Lab system. These range from 40mm to 600mm in diameter depending on the system requirements.
The fittings and manifold for the plumbing system and the connections for the panels have been developed by and are provided by PVT Lab. These manifolds are pre-made in 6 or 12 meter lengths.
PVT Lab can size and source the correct size pumps for your system.
Controllers are the brains of the system. In order to maximise the energy generated by the thermal panels, controllers are designed to ensure that the pumps, valves, thermal stores and heat pumps are all talking to each other. A 4G connected controller and monitoring system updates a website with live energy values and savings, and the SCADA software can be integrated with existing building management systems. Internet of Things connectivity is also an option for this system and an accompanying App is coming soon.