Solar Thermal power with Diffuse Light Concentration Technology
Solar Thermal - Diffuse Light Concentration technology
The main project of Ciao Carbon Limited is the development of solar panels based on Diffuse Light Concentration.
This is the missing link of solar power - both thermal as well as electric.
Most solar panels have a near linear efficiency drop, from 100% sunlight (1 sun, or 1000 W/m2), down to 20% sunlight ( 0.2 sun, or 200 W/m2). From 20% to 10%, the drop in output typically reduces such that at 10% sunlight or below, the solar panel entirely stops producing any energy. Many curves for solar panels do not even show any output below 20% light.
Although one could be tempted to think that the most gains from solar power can be achieved at 100% sunlight, the low end of the light intensity has a much more significant importance. In cold regions, where space heating is necessary, this usually accounts for a huge amount of the energy consumption, typically around 1/3 of the entire energy expenditure in a certain region. In tropical areas, something similar is the case for space cooling, although this use is closer to 1/5 to 1/4 of the total energy consumption.
When space heating is required, this is typically when the ambient temperatures are below freezing, with either fog or overcast conditions. This is also when the duration of daylight is shortest, and the attenuation from the atmosphere is at its highest, due to the lower elevation of the sun.
Saving electric solar energy from summer to winter is practically impossible. Saving thermal energy from summer to winter is possible, but it will not in itself provide sufficient space heating for a typical winter season in climates with freezing conditions.
We need to get better at utilising the energy in the light, when it’s overcast or foggy.
And THIS is what Ciao Carbon Limited is in the process of developing and refining.
For protection of intellectual rights, we are not able to reveal the exact technology, but can say as much as it is a combination of known technologies, along with a few new proprietary Ciao Carbon developments.
It is not possible to extract any energy that isn’t there, but it is possible to enrich and concentrate the light that impacts a larger area, into a more concentrated energy bundle. The usual technology of lenses and mirrors only works efficiently for parallel or near parallel light. The technology of Ciao Carbon Limited is able to concentrate the diffuse and weak light to a level which provides a stagnation temperature sufficiently high to allow for space heading via radiant floor heating. Hot domestic water will in some cases need to be augmented by a heat pump or other means, but it will be a small fraction of the yearly energy budget of a typical house.
The Diffuse Light Technology will also be combined with cooling and dehumidification technology, based on thermal heat energy. Since solar thermal panels are more than 4 times as efficient as electric solar panels, they allow for a much more energy efficient indoor climate comfort control. The Diffuse Light Concentration technology ensures the system will keep working in overcast or foggy conditions. Furthermore, a heat storage will allow the system to operate overnight, and in other cases even days or weeks.
Being able to enrich the diffuse and weak light is indeed the missing link of solar power. Harnessing this technology will bring solar thermal power to a level where it is possible to supply the energy needs of buildings in almost any habited location of the earth.
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