Thrive! Not just survive.
Solar and Wind Systems
Solar energy power from the sun is a vast and inexhaustible resource.
Once a system is in place to convert it into useful energy, the fuel is
free and will never be subject to the ups and downs of energy markets.
Furthermore, it represents a clean alternative to the fossil fuels that
currently pollute our air and water and threaten our public health.
Given the abundance and the appeal of solar energy, this resource is
poised to play a prominent role in our energy future.
In the broadest sense, solar energy supports all life on Earth and is the basis for almost every form of energy we use. The sun makes plants grow, which can be burned as "biomass" fuel or, if left to rot in swamps and compressed underground, in the form of coal and oil. Heat from the sun causes temperature differences between areas, producing wind that can power turbines. Water evaporates because of the sun, falls on high elevations, and rushes down to the sea, spinning hydroelectric turbines as it passes. But solar energy usually refers to ways the sun's energy can be used to directly generate heat, lighting, and electricity.
Passive Solar Designs
One simple, obvious use of the sun is to light and heat our buildings.
Residential and commercial buildings account for more than one-third of U.S.
energy use. If properly designed, buildings can capture the sun's heat in
the winter and minimize it in the summer, while using daylight year-round.
Our buildings are designed in such a way that they utilize passive solar energy, a resource that
can be tapped without mechanical means to help heat, cool, or light a building.
Simple design features such as properly orienting a house toward the south,
putting most windows on the south side of the building, thermal mass, convection draw, skylights, awnings,
and shade trees are all techniques for exploiting passive solar energy.
Buildings constructed with the sun in mind are comfortable and beautiful
places to live and work.
We will be teaching both aspects of solar power and passive solar construction. This will include all of the components used for solar power systems and how to install them. For further information on passive solar construction please click here Heating and Cooling.
Here is a basic wire diagram of a solar electric system. These systems seem complicated. However they are fairly easy to work with. Most systems are plug and play. We will be demystifying these systems in our training course.
Wind is the second part of our power systems.
On days when the sun is not out there is a strong likelihood that the wind is blowing. There are two basic types of wind turbins. The first is horizontal axis wind turbin or HAWT.
The second is a vertical axis wind turbin or VAWT.
HAWT are more efficient then VAWT when it comes to making electricity. However there are more things to take into consideration than electrical efficiency. Due to the nature of both the VAWT and the HAWT we have decided to use only VAWT. We will be covering the reasons and the building of a VAWT in our training course.