Passive Solar & Low Energy Cooling Strategies
Harlan H. Bengtson, Ph.D., P.E.
The major strategies for passive solar and low energy cooling are i) reduction of external heat gain, ii) reduction of internal heat generation, iii) provide ventilation, and iv) use of low-energy cooling methods. Each of these topics are discussed in this course.
This course includes
a multiple-choice quiz at the end, which is designed to enhance the understanding
of the course materials.
At the conclusion of this course, the student will:
This course is intended for mechanical, chemical and energy engineers, and architects.
Benefits to Attendee
An attendee of this course will have basic knowledge about passive solar and low energy cooling strategies.
The major strategies for passive solar and low energy cooling are i) reduction of external heat gain, ii) reduction of internal heat generation, iii) provide ventilation, and iv) use of low-energy cooling methods. Each of these topics will be discussed in the following sections.
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The main strategies for passive solar and low energy cooling of a building are i) reduction of external heat gain, ii) reduction of internal heat generation, iii) provision of ventilation, and iv) use of low energy cooling alternatives. External heat gain can be minimized through the use of proper shading, especially for south facing windows and use of good insulation and weatherstripping to minimize heat infiltration and transmission into the building. Use of energy efficient appliances, and sensible use of appliances, which give off excess heat, during the cooling season, can help to reduce internal heat generation. Natural or augmented ventilation can help to bring cooler air into the building and to make the living space feel more comfortable. Earth tubes, radiative cooling and evaporative cooling are three possible methods for low energy cooling. All three of them work best in locations with low atmospheric humidity.
1. Goswami, D. Y., Krieth, Frank, and Kreider, Jan F., Principles of Solar Engineering, Philadelphia: Taylor & Francis, 2000.
2. Anderson, Bruce & Wells, Malcolm, Passive Solar Energy: The Homeowners Guide to Natural Heating and Cooling, Andover MA: Brickhouse Publishing Co., 1981 (available for free download at the website given below:) http://www.builditsolar.com/Projects/SolarHomes/PasSolEnergyBk/PSEbook.htm
1. Passive Solar Heating & Cooling – Arizona Solar Center http://www.azsolarcenter.com/technology/pas-3.html
2. North Carolina Solar Center, Passive Cooling Information http://www.ncsc.ncsu.edu/information_resources/factsheets/13coolng.pdf
3. Solar DIY Space Cooling Information and Projects http://www.builditsolar.com/Projects/Cooling/passive_cooling.htm
4. NREL, Solar Radiation Data Manual for Buildings (Provides much solar radiation data, including recommended design for roof overhang shading of south-facing windows for 239 stations in the United States and its territories.) http://rredc.nrel.gov/solar/pubs/bluebook/