This study investigates the feasibility of installing solar thermal energy systems on small residential districts and the practical issues that can arise. A residential district, planned to be built in the locality Tierp, has been used as a case study.
The residential district Kanalstaden will be designed as a canal residential area, where houses will be constructed alongside three to five artificial canals. The district will consist of small module houses with one basic module that later can be extended by adding one or two similar modules, as well as larger two floor houses.
The circumstances of the residential area, the houses and the residents, puts certain requirements and demands on the design of a potential solar thermal system. This does in turn highlight some main factors that have to be taken into consideration when a solar thermal energy system is planned for residential areas.
Practical issues like where and how collectors and tanks can be placed has to be considered, but also things like the balance between supply and demand has a great importance. Surrounding circumstances, such as shadowing, can also have a great impact. Social factors, such as the specifics of the residents’ heating and water demand, have ultimately also a very important role.
The most significant conclusion that can be drawn from the case of Kanalstaden however, is the flexibility of solar thermal energy systems. It can, and should, be implemented differently depending on the actual circumstances existing – it just has to be designed and installed in accordance to it.
Source: Uppsala University
Author: Thunman, Jennie