Railway station trials solar-thermal for DHW
This solar-thermal installation at Birmingham International railway station is being assessed as a potential pilot for a wider roll out of renewable energy across facilities operated by Network Rail and train operator Virgin trains. The installation comprises 10 evacuated-tube collectors and pre-heats incoming mains water at a typical 10°C to around 35°C, although it is expected to reach 55 to 65°C in high summer.
The collectors have a net absorber area of 10.69 m2. The installation also includes a Stokvis Solar Bloc Maxi pump station and a Stokvis Resol BX Plus differential-pressure controller that provides up to eight sensor inputs.
The solar fluid in the system is circulated to a large-surface-area coil in a 1000 l stainless-steel thermal storage vessel that provides pre-heat for the DHW. The system serves the station’s toilets and various shops and eateries around the main concourse.
The storage vessel supplies two existing gas-fired water heaters that increase the temperature to 60°C.
A heat meter is enabling the client to assess the benefit of the system and the payment possible under the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI).