SolarWall technology taps into free warmth for buildings
Reznor has worked with building envelope manufacturer, CA Group to develop a technology that provides fresh, heated air for space or process heating, while reducing energy use.
The Solar Wall Transpired Solar Collector technology, SolarWall, is a pre-coated steel or aluminium cladding that utilises the sun’s energy to heat fresh, outdoor air for buildings. Independent testing shows that SolarWall can raise the temperature of ambient air by over 40oC, even in the UK.
CA Group commissioned BSRIA to carry out an independent ‘before-and-after’ test of the SolarWall system that was installed on one of their own buildings in the UK. The tests showed that after 12 months, fuel costs for heating were reduced by around 51%.
SolarWall is installed on the southerly exterior elevations of a building envelope. The system harnesses surface solar gain to pre-heat outside air as it is drawn through thousands of tiny perforations within the surface of the collector. For new buildings, SolarWall can be integrated with Reznor air heating systems to suit a variety of applications.
In retrofit installations to existing buildings, the pre-heated air is usually distributed throughout the building via a ventilation unit with modulating dampers serving perforated ducting.
A 4,500m2 SolarWall system has recently been installed by CA Group for a Marks & Spencer distribution warehouse in Castle Donnington. It is expected to reduce the structure’s heating requirement by 30%.