How does a Daylighting system work?

The patented Solar Lens® dome captures the light and reflects low angle light and more ambient light down through a highly reflective reflective, mirror-like tube. The bright tube reflects sunlight into your home, even in early morning or late afternoon. The diffuser then spreads the light evenly throughout the room.

What sizes does the daylighting system come in?

  • 250mm diameter.
  • 350mm diameter.
  • 450mm diameter.
  • 550mm diameter.

What happens on a cloudy day?

Our Skylight’s reflective system transfers light down to the room with minimal light loss on cloudy days. The patented Solar Lens® technology allows light coming from any direction to be transferred down the tube, allowing the best light output possible.

Will the Tubular Skylight fit all roof types?

Yes. Different flashings are available to ensure a perfect fit for all roof types. Flashing are designed to provide you leak proof installation.

Can I install a tubular skylight myself? Is it difficult to install?

A homeowner can easily install our tubular skylights in about 2 hours or less. Installation requires basic do-it-yourself skills. Installation requires no wiring or structural changes to your home. Each kit comes with illustrated step-by-step instructions.

What maintenance is needed?

The Tubular Skylights require no maintenance! Once properly installed, the unit is sealed from weather, dust, moisture and bugs.

Do our Tubular Skylights leak?

Our Tubular Skylight is designed for leak-free operation when installed properly.

Are the Tubular Skylights Energy Efficient?

Yes, the Tubular Skylight “DL”series meets ENERGY STAR® thermal performance criteria.

Can I use my tubular skylight at night?

Yes, we offer a light kit that is installed directly into the lower section of the light tube and wiring to a wall switch.

Can I turn off my skylight during the day?

We offers dimmers for all sizes. The dimmer is perfect for any room that may need to be darkened during the day including bedrooms, media and conference rooms. The dimmer is easily installed inside the light tube and is operated using a remote control.

What type of warranty do the skylights have?

Our “DL” series have the industry leading 15 year product warranty.

What is Photovoltaic solar energy?

The word Photovoltaic (PV) is composed of two terms: Photo – Photon which means “light” and Voltaic from “Volt” which is the unit used to measure electric potential at a given point.

Photovoltaic systems use cells to convert sunlight into electricity. PV cells can be made from different so-called semiconductor materials. Today, silicon is the most widely used material, but other, usually compound (made from two or more elements) semiconductors is also used. They are silent and non-polluting, utilise a source of energy that renews itself, and require no special training.

What difference is there between thermal solar energy and Photovoltaic solar energy?

The photovoltaic solar energy system converts sunlight directly into electric power to Solar Powerrun lighting or electric appliances. A photovoltaic system requires only daylight to generate electricity.
The solar thermal energy system generates and produces heat. This energy can be used to heat water or air in buildings or in many other applications.
Both use the irradiance of the sun even if the technology is quite different.

What is a Photovoltaic system?

A photovoltaic (PV) system is a system which uses solar cells to convert light into electricity.

Solar Power A PV system consists of multiple components, including cells, mechanical and electrical connections and mountings and means of regulating and/or modifying the electrical output. Due to the low voltage of an individual solar cell (typically ca. 0.5V), several cells are combined into photovoltaic modules,which are in turn connected together into an array.

PV systems can be used for homes, offices, public buildings or remote sites where grid connection is either unavailable or too expensive. PV systems can be mounted on roofs or on building facades or operate as a stand-alone system. The innovative PV array technology and mounting systems means that PV can be retrofitted on existing roofs or easily incorporated as part of the building envelope at construction stage. Modern PV technology has advanced rapidly and PV is no longer restricted to square and flat panel arrays but can be curved, flexible and shaped to the building design.

“Grid connected” means that the system is connected to the electricity grid. Connection to the local electricity network allows any excess power produced to feed the electricity grid and to sell it to the utility. Such a PV system is designed to meet all or a portion of the daily energy needs. Typical on-grid applications are roof top systems on private houses.

The figure shows how electricity generated by solar cells in roof-mounted PV modules is transformed by an inverter into AC power suitable for export to the grid network. The householder/generator then has two choices: either to sell all the output to the local power utility (if a feed-in tariff is available) or to use the solar electricity to meet demand in the house itself, and then sell any surplus to the utility.

“Off-grid systems” have no connection to an electricity grid. Off-grid systems are contributing to rural electrification in many developing countries. PV is also used for many industrial applications where grid connection is not possible e.g. telecommunications, especially to link remote rural areas to the rest of the country.

What is a Photovoltaic system composed of?

Elements of a grid-connected PV system are: PV modules – converting sunlight into electric power, an inverter to convert direct current into alternating current, sub-construction consisting out of the mounting system, cabling and components used for electrical protection, and a meter to record the quantity of electric power fed into the grid.

Off-grid (stand-alone) systems use charge controllers instead of inverters and have a storage battery for supplying the electric energy when there is no sunlight e.g. during night hours.

What is an inverter?

When sunlight strikes a photo voltaic cell, direct current [DC] is generated. By putting an electric load across the cell, this current can be utilized. An inverter is an electrical device which converts direct current [DC] to alternating current [AC].

Solar cells produce direct current. Most of the electrical devices we commonly use however, expect a standard AC power supply. An inverter takes the DC from the solar cells and creates a useable form of AC.
An inverter is moreover necessary to connect a PV system to the grid.

What is net metering?

Solar electric systems use PV technology to convert sunlight into electricity during daylight hours. In a grid-connected PV system, PV modules pass DC electricity through an inverter to convert it into AC power. If the PV system AC power is greater than the owner’s needs, the inverter sends the surplus to the utility grid for use by others. It allows sending excess solar electricity back to the utility company.

If a home or office requires more electricity than can be provided by the PV system, the balance is provided through the grid connection. The utility provides AC power to the owner at night and during times when the owner’s requirements exceed the capability of the PV system.

In many countries, the utility company purchases all PV electricity generated at a higher rate (feed-in-tariff) than the tariff applied for consumed electricity. In this case, a dedicated metering exists for “PV generation” and a second metering for “power taken from the grid”, applying each different tariffs.

What is the feed-in tariff (FIT) and how does it work?

They put a legal obligation on utility companies to buy electricity from renewable energy producers at a premium rate, usually over a guaranteed period, making the installation of renewable energy systems a worthwhile and secure investment for the producer. The extra cost is shared among all energy users, thereby reducing it to a barely noticeable level.

FITs have been empirically proven to generate the fastest, lowest-cost deployment of renewable energy, and with this as a priority for climate protection and security of energy supply, not to mention job creation and competitiveness, FITs are the best vehicle for delivering these benefits.

The FIT system means that the pay-back time for PV is no longer several decades but several years instead.

Does Photo voltaic technology need bright sunshine to work properly?

A PV system needs daylight to work but not direct sunlight. Indeed, if a PV module is exposed to an artificial light, it will also produce electricity.

The light of the sun consists both of direct light and indirect or diffuse light (which is the light that has been scattered by dust and water particles in the atmosphere). Photo voltaic cells not only use the direct component of the light, but also produce electricity when the sky is overcast. It is a common misconception that PV only operates in direct sunshine and is therefore not suitable for use in temperate climates. This is not correct: photo voltaic make use of diffuse solar radiation as well as direct sunlight.

When sunlight strikes a photo voltaic cell, direct current [DC] is generated. By putting an electric load across the cell, this current can be utilized. The amount of useful electricity generated by a PV module is proportional to the intensity of light energy, which falls onto the conversion area. The greater the available solar resource, the higher the electricity generation potential.

However, as the electrical output of a PV module is dependent on the intensity of the light to which it is exposed, it is certain that a PV module exposed to the sun at midday by clear sky, will produce maximum of its output electricity. You can thus indeed say that PV modules will tend to generate more electricity on bright days than when skies are overcast. Nevertheless, photo voltaic systems do not need to be in direct sunlight to work, so even on overcast days a PV module will be generating some electricity.

How much electricity does a Photo voltaic system produce?

The electricity production of a PV system depends on external (environmental conditions) and internal (technology, layout of the system) parameters.

The efficiency of the PV module depends on:

  • The size of the PV system and its technology
  • The orientation of the PV module towards the sun. The optimal orientation for locations above the Ecuador is the south.
  • The tilt angle or inclination of the roof. For European countries, the average optima inclination is 30-35 degrees
  • The irradiance value on site
  • The climate zone.

Shadows on the modules (also if they appear only at certain times of day) reduce significantly the gain of the whole system and should be avoided.

The map below represents the yearly sum of global irradiation on a horizontal (inclined) surface. Alternatively the maps represent solar electricity [kWh] generated by a 1kWp system per year with horizontal (or inclined) modules.

What does grid parity mean?

Grid parity means that, for consumers, photo voltaic electricity will be cheaper than the retail electricity price.

In the light of decreasing solar electricity generation costs and increasing price for conventional electricity, solar power systems will equally become increasingly economic during the next few years. During the next 5-10 years, solar electricity will become cheaper (depending on location and peak hours) for private households than retail electricity.

A considerable advantage of solar electricity is that it is mainly produced around midday when conventional electricity is particularly expensive. Solar electricity largely replaces expensive peak-load electricity at preferential customer prices, which is why it would be wrong to compare it with cheap base-load electricity.

Do Photo voltaic modules loose efficiency each year?

The degradation of the PV modules varies from the type of PV modules installed. The loss of power production within the lifetime of 20 to 25 years is estimated to 10 to 20% for crystalline PV modules.

How much CO2 will a solar roof save?

The CO2 savings of a solar roof will depend on many factors, including:

  • The energy source the solar production is replacing (coal, gas, hydro-electric, nuclear…)
  • The quantity of energy produced by the solar roof (depending on the roof’s location, orientation, inclination and shading)
  • The quantity of electricity needed to manufacture the photo voltaic system (modules, inverter, cables, etc.)
  • The “energy habits” of the solar roof owner.

How much CO2 will a solar roof save If your electricity comes from a coal fired power station, each kWh you use will release around 1.000 g of equivalent carbon (various greenhouse gases converted into “equivalent carbon units” for comparison). However, if your original electricity comes from a hydro-electric power station, it is producing much less carbon equivalent emissions (less than 10g).

A very important factor is the design of the system. If a system is wrongly designed (e.g. modules facing the south and 90degree inclination) the electricity output will be very low and therefore the system will not replace much conventional electricity.

So clearly the amount of CO2 you will be saving is very dependent on the source of the energy replaced. Next to CO2 savings, each m² of solar module installed will produce clean and sustainable home-made electricity.

Is it worthwhile using solar energy in Australia?

Definitely! With efficient solar power systems, this is sufficient to generate a considerable volume of electricity and heat from solar power.

Hence it is worthwhile producing solar energy not least because this makes us less dependent on energy imports but also because:

  • The fuel is free
  • It produces no noise, harmful emissions or polluting gases
  • PV systems are very safe and highly reliable
  • It brings electricity to remote rural areas
  • The energy pay-back time of a module is constantly decreasing
  • It creates thousands of jobs
  • It contributes to improving the security of Australia’s energy supply.

What is the lifetime of a Photo voltaic system?

The estimated lifetime of a PV module is 30 years. Furthermore, the modules’ performance is very high providing over 80% of the initial power after 25 years which makes photo voltaic a very reliable technology in the long term.

Most manufacturers in general propose performance guarantees on the modules after 20 years of 80% of the initial output power. On the electronic components and accessories (inverts), the guarantee usually does not exceed 10 years.

But this doesn’t mean that PV systems don’t produce energy after 20/25 years. Most PV systems installed more than 25 years ago, still produce energy today!

What if there is a problem with the Photo voltaic system?

If a PV module has a defect or no longer produces electricity or, under identical conditions, produces much less electricity than before, it is generally covered by the manufacturers’ performance guarantee against a drop in efficiency of more than 20%.

Most manufacturers indeed propose performance guarantees on modules of 20 and 25 years for 80% of the initial output power. On the electronic components and accessories (inverts), the guarantee usually does not exceed 5 to 10 years.

Is solar energy more expensive than conventional energy?

In the light of decreasing solar electricity generation costs and increasing costs for conventional electricity (due to oil and gas prices), solar power systems will equally become increasingly economic during the next few years.

A considerable advantage of solar electricity is that it is mainly produced during the day when the demand is high and therefore electricity is particularly expensive. Another important characteristic is that PV is normally produced at the same site than demand; therefore, it is not necessary high investment on extending the electricity infrastructure.

In the long term, solar energy will be much cheaper than conventional energy. However, solar energy is already well on the way: whereas the costs for conventionally generated energy have constantly increased in recent years and – faced with finite resources – will continue to increase by a considerable extent, increasing mass production has enabled the cost of solar energy to drop by an average of 10% per year.

What is an LED?

LED is an abbreviation for a light-emitting diode. An LED is an electronic light source. A diode is not a light bulb. Traditional incandescent light bulbs heat tungsten filaments until they glow, like a toaster heating element. These filaments gradually evaporate until they break and burn out.

LEDs work on a totally different premise, similar to transistors or other electronics along those lines. There is no filament to burn out. They’re also a much more efficient light source, producing considerably more light per watt than a traditional bulb.

Most LEDs are about 2/10 of an inch in diameter and about 1/3 of an inch in length. Whereas typical household lamps require 120 volts, an LED uses just two or three volts. What’s more, typical household lamps are rated for 1,500 to 2,000 hours while LEDs can last 50,000 hours or more.

What is LED Lighting?

LED lighting has been around for many years and is just now really coming into its own. For years, the Light Emitting Diode was simply used as an indicator or display light in various small-scale applications. Think of those old Texas Instruments calculators, or your blinking VCR light.

LED is a solid-state technology. This means there is no glass bulb, no pressurized gases, no mercury and no burning filament. In the traditional bulb, Heat was the main result while light stood as a mere by-product of electrifying the filament.

With LED technology, what you have is a circuit board and a computer chip. The properties of the chip create light that is generated and focused through a plastic diode to create light. Depending on the chip and materials used, different colours in the colour spectrum can be created.

How do LED's Work?

Basically, LEDs are just tiny light bulbs that fit easily into an electrical circuit. But unlike ordinary incandescent bulbs, they don’t have a filament that will burn out, and they don’t get especially hot. They are illuminated solely by the movement of electrons in a semiconductor material, and they last just as long as a standard transistor.

How long do LEDs generally last?

The industry standard for LED is around 50000hrs. As all things do they will degrade initially up to 10% over the first 1000hrs of operation followed by a slower rate of decline to 30% loss after 50000 hrs. Commercially available LEDs are generally blue LEDs with a fluorescence applied to them and its the fluorescence that degrades not the chip/diode itself.

How does ambient temperature affect LED efficiency?

LED fixtures must be designed with junction temperature thermal management as a key component and use the correct LEDs. These products will then be robust enough to operate in most ambient temperature applications. Unlike fluorescent sources, cold temperatures do not impact the performance of LEDs.

What is lumen?

Lumen is amount of light emitted from light source. According to Wikipedia, “If a light source emits one candela of luminous intensity into a solid angle of one steradian, the total luminous flux emitted into that solid angle is one lumen. Alternatively, an isotropic one-candela light source emits a total luminous flux of exactly 4? lumens. The lumen can be thought of casually as a measure of the total amount of visible light emitted.” For example, a standard 100 Watt incandescent bulb emits about 1500 lumen.

What is Lux?

Lux is lumen per square meter. According to Wikipedia, “The difference between the lux and the lumen is that the lux takes into account the area over which the luminous flux is spread. 1000 lumens, concentrated into an area of one square meter, lights up that square meter with an luminance of 1000 lux. The same 1000 lumens, spread out over ten square meters, produces a dimmer luminance of only 100 lux.”

Benefits of LED Bulbs?

Save money and energy by using LED bulbs. Generally, an LED consumes less than 0.1 watt to operate. This incredibly low consumption means you will save on your energy costs right from the start.

The typical LED bulb will last for 50,000 hours. This is over 10 Years of light from One Bulb used half the time. Compared to an incandescent bulb, which lasts 1,000 hours, a halogen bulb lasts 2,000 hours, and a compact fluorescent bulb may last up to 10,000 hours.
The extremely long life of an LED bulb will virtually eliminate your maintenance costs. There will be no need to change light bulbs throughout the year.

The solid state technology of an LED is very durable and can withstand high levels of shock and vibration. Its able to operate in extreme temperatures cold, or hot. (-35C to 80C).

LED convert almost all the energy used into the light output, making them a highly efficient light source. LED generate less than 30% of the heat of traditional lighting technologies. With minimal heat generated, LED are safe to the touch and do not produce any harmful UV rays.

LED are environmentally friendly, they are made from non-toxic materials unlike fluorescent which contain Mercury. For more on what LED are made from.

High power LED Bulbs?

High power LED Bulbs utilize the latest LED technology. These are the surface mount type or SMD LEDs. Small as they are, they generate high heat which must be dissipated or moved away from the LED in order for the LED to live the expected life time of 50,000 hours. To do that, most manufacturers have incorporated an aluminium body with fins to increase the total area that the heat can escape to and be dissipated. The higher the operating current, the higher the heat load to be dissipated. That means more fins, or more thin and longer fins are required. In the case of one newly developed design, the LED bulb incorporates water to assist with the dissipation of heat.

What are the advantages of using LEDs over traditional incandescent lighting?

There are quite a few advantages to using LEDs. Generally they are heatless, use 90% less energy, and last ten years. They are also smaller and do not contain any dangerous chemicals like mercury. They can readily be put in places that have always been too small or out-of-the-way for many incandescent lights, as well as in places that were always very dangerous or difficult to get at. Also, the more sophisticated LED apparatuses like wall washers and spotlights are DMX-controllable, which means they can be used in some really impressive ways.

The bottom line is that LED’s are easier and safer to use than all previous lighting technologies. Plus, LEDs will save you money by consuming less power, lasting much longer, and generating much less heat, which in turn combine to result in lower climate control costs.

What types of LED Lighting products are readily available?

Today there are hundreds of different products available in varying brightness levels, color temperatures, and sophistication levels to meet every lighting need – from those of an architect’s latest high-rise condo project, to those of a rural homeowner’s kitchen renovation. There are replacement bulbs for screw-in Edison-style bulbs and for nearly every style of Fluorescent. Plus, the LED replacements are of the “plug and play” ilk with no other modifications needed. There are also many different types of architectural lighting, such as wall washers and spotlights.

Broadly you can say you have a product for every application from LED Downlights, Bulbs, Ceiling Lights, Patio Lights, Industrial Lights etc.

What is the advantage of a solar water heater over an electric heater?

Solar energy is an excellent and truly economic solution to our energy problems. By using solar energy to heat water, we reduce the amount of fossil fuels that is wasted. Thereby we are also reducing the amount of greenhouse gases that are released into the air. In addition, it will help you save a huge amount on your electricity bills. After the initial cost of installing the system is paid back, you can reap the benefits of your saving.

How much money do you actually save?

In Australia, if you are replacing your old electric heating system with a new solar powered hot water system, you will be eligible for rebates and other incentives. Apart from this, you and your family can save up to 80% – 90% a year on your water heating bills.

Who will install the system?

The systems are installed by our trained and qualified installers.

Will I get hot water all the time?

Mostly, a 300 litre heating system can service enough water for a home with 4 to 5 members. However, if you need more water, you can purchase a bigger system. Alternately, you can also install multiple systems.

Also, your solar water heater can work fine in cloudy days. However, in case of very cloudy days or extended period of cloudy days, the gas or electric booster that comes with your system will automatically kick in. This entails that you and your family will have 24-hours access to hot water, irrespective of the weather condition.

How does a solar hot water roof mounted system work?

A roof mounted water heating system is located in a direction facing the north. There is a collector present, which is heated up by the sun and the heated water then goes into the tank. In case of evacuated tube collectors, the tank is usually placed in the ground level and the hot water rises naturally into the tank, in a process called thermo-siphoning.

How does a solar hot water split system work?

A split system, as the name suggests, will consist of north facing roof mounted collector and a mounted tank on the ground. Once the sun heats the water to a pre-set temperature, a sensor device is activated which activates a circulation pump, which starts to pump the hot water into the storage tank on the ground.

How is a roof-mounted system different from a split system?

Both the systems are the same in terms of energy benefits. Thus, what you choose should depend or your personal choice and your budget. However, in a split system, the heat loss is slightly less, as the tank is not exposed to the elements. But then, some additional energy is required to work the small pump in case of split system.

Why is roof ventilation important?

In the colder winter months, moisture from everyday activities inside the house can enter the roof cavity. Without proper ventilation, this moisture promotes mold and mildew, saturates insulation. In the summer, heat from the roof cavity can radiate down into your living area making the air conditioner work harder to cool your home. If air conditioning ducting runs in the attic, a hot attic will superheat the ducting and the conditioned air inside making the air conditioner less efficient.

Does my roof already have ventilation?

Most (but not all) roofs have some form of static ventilation. Static vents or ridge vents will help but generally do not provide sufficient air movement to pull heat and moisture from the attic – especially during the winter or when the ambient air is stagnate.

Is a solar powered roof fan difficult to install?

Solar roof Fans are extremely easy to install. A homeowner can install one in less than an hour and a professional in less than 30 minutes.

What type of roof can a solar attic fan be installed on?

Our Solar roof Fans can be installed virtually on any roof of either residential or commercial buildings. The roof mounted model is designed for either pitched or flat roofs. The solar panel can be angled to the position it will collect the most sunlight providing optimal venting performance on all roof slopes. Both a curb and gable mounted units are also available.

What warranty does the Solar Roof Fan provide?

All our solar attic fan models have the industry leading up to 10 year product warranty.

What maintenance is needed?

Our Solar Roof Fans require no maintenance! The unit has been engineered to be leak proof when installed properly. It also has a protective animal screen that keeps out the critters.

How quiet are your fans?

Our solar roof fans are designed for whisper quiet operation. Using a proprietary five wing aluminium fan blade adjusted to optimum pitch performance.

How durable are your solar attic fans relative to hurricanes?

Our solar roof fans are designed to be the most durable solar powered ventilation products available. The body, lover and the blade are made of durable aluminium material not plastic.

Is there any electrical wiring required to install solar fans?

No, our solar roof fans are standalone units and are not tied to your home’s power.

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