Sep 25, 2021
SOLR 1020 - Introduction to Solar Assessment Credits: 3
Hours/Week: Lecture NoneLab None
Course Description: This course introduces students to basics of solar energy and solar site assessment for solar photovoltaic and thermal systems. Students will measure the solar window with a Solar Pathfinder(TM) and estimate the effects of climate, system design, and vegetation growth (and removal) on energy production. Using industry-standard hardware, mounting options and equipment, students will propose system designs, model economic and environmental costs and benefits, and report their findings.
- Factors Affecting Solar Economics
- Conventional Energy Use
- Design tools
- Permits and licenses
- Photovoltaic Electrical Design considerations
- Routing pipes and conduit
- Solar Thermal Design considerations
- Solar finance
- Solar mounting considerations
- The Solar Resource
- Incentives and rebates
- Write a site assessment
At the end of this course students will be able to:
- describe factors that affect the profitability of solar energy systems.
- explain strengths and weaknesses of solar photovoltaic, hot water and air heating systems.
- given climate data, estimate the output of solar photovoltaic and thermal panels in different orientations.
- demonstrate proficiency in use of a site analyzer.
- contact appropriate municipal offices for permit information.
- identify basic components of a solar air, water, and electric system.
- present options for mounting collectors and explain their effects on seasonal output and snow loading.
- present choices of appropriate technology to fit customer needs. Example-flat plate vs. evacuated tube.
- describe appropriate insulation, support and ultraviolet protection for solar wiring and plumbing and wiring.
- describe factors that affect the efficiency of both thermal and electric solar systems.
- gather customer information by interviewing and analyzing utility records.
- explain strengths and limitations of the solar resource.
- assess condition of roofing material for its appropriateness for solar.
- calculate cost, simple payback, return on investment and cash flow for solar energy systems.
- given a design, estimate the installed cost of a solar electric or thermal system, including materials, labor, subcontractors and permits.
- identify common roofing materials and describe their compatibility with roof attachment hardware.
- identify roof attachment hardware and their applications and limitations.
- model output and economics for a photovoltaic or domestic hot water system.
- model solar space heating and hot water output.
- size a system to a customers needs.
- explain when a structural engineering inspection of a roof is required.
- write solar site assessments including costs, benefits, and customer goals.
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