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Hot Water System

After examining the requirements of single systems for hot water ( resistive electric, solar and heat pump ), it seems like we'll need to go with a hybrid solution. Potentially, this would include a solar/resistive or solar/heat pump system. In looking at what teams have done in the past, often the base load was covered by a solar or heat pump system and the resistive electric was used as a backup to these. The issue with solar hot water heating is the placement of the collector. If this can be resolved either by using the collectors as part of a railing system or simply on the side of the house, then solar heating could then be the base supply.

A combination of all three systems could also be put in place. In this way, even on very cloudy days hot water could be generated by the heat-pump without the side effects of a high electrical demand being generated by the resistive heater. This system does have the obvious drawback of being financially and space-wise expensive.

To finally resolve this problem and come up with a solution, a detailed model will have to be put together and run through a variety of tests. This model is still being formulated but it has produced the preliminary result that a hybrid solution will be necessary for maximum efficiency.


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