This book is about all the information Kyle learned over his 31 years of interest in solar power. This includes all the information you need to become 100% utility independent. The possibilities of sun electricity (solar power), rain, radiant heat, geothermal, battery banks, inverters, ac-dc lighting, water storage-recycling-filtration, water heating, wire sizing, refrigeration, cooking, fuses, conservation, photovoltaic solar panel positioning/placement, grid-tie, parallel, standalone systems, as well as an overview of how we got here through the inventions of Tesla, Franklin, Einstein, and Edison all are mentioned in this manual.
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Solar Independent Utility Systems Manual(A Greener Way of Living) Dedicated To: The cause of a moneyless society and to all who want to save our planet!
By Kyle William Loshure
AuthorHouseCopyright © 2011 Kyle William Loshure
All right reserved.
The best experiences I've had with refrigerators and the most long lasting, cost effective models are the LP gas refrigerators (propane gas model refrigerators). They can run off of DC current that does not require an inverter and they are very long lasting. The reliability is outstanding from year to year. They run off of a mixture of ammonia and salt. The process is much like a regular refrigerator except it doesn't have chemical refrigerant that is harmful to the environment. They are highly reliable in the fact that they run off of 12 volt batteries that are recharged by solar panels and have been proven to operate year to year without fail. With proper battery maintenance and sufficient propane storage it has been the most reliable form of refrigeration that I have ever found.
The issues that I have found are easily solved and are the following: 1) Out of propane. 2) Battery simply needs to be changed. If the propane is out simply turn the unit off for 30 seconds, refill, and then turn it back on. If the battery needs to be replaced simply turn the unit off, replace the battery, and then turn the unit back on. The only major but, easily fixed issue happens in the coldest winter season which is that the ammonia/salt mixture can get a small clog of salt. This is easily fixed by tapping the back of the units heating coils to break up the salt clog.
Periodically defrosting the unit is necessary when frost builds up in the freezer section of the cooling unit. The long lasting ability of the refrigerator is the basic equation of propane, battery reserve, and frost maintenance. With proper maintenance previously mentioned you can expect many decades of dependable refrigeration from your propane, solar powered 12 volt refrigerator. Some newer units require no pilot light which saves gas, is safer, and most efficient.
The best part about your solar powered propane refrigerator is the fact that you will never again have to worry about undependable inflationary electric companies that have failed our society and have affected hundreds of millions of families over the past century. You should never trust anyone with the safety of your food except yourself. This is why your solar powered propane refrigerator is the number one most important part of your solar independent utility system.
Chapter TwoWater Heating
On demand water heaters are the best most reliable, cost effective, and an extremely efficient way of having hot water for your whole household that does not ever run out. The way it works is, as the water is passing through the water heater, it is heated to as hot as you desire. Gas propane on demand heater is the best heater in my opinion. When operated from a source of propane and water is pumped by a 12 volt water pump powered from solar power you have an independent source of hot water for showers along with all other uses. Having your water heater this way you can have a total utility independent way of producing unlimited hot water.
The maintenance for your on demand heater is simple but, necessary. When using rain water filtered with activated carbon filters, no maintenance is required. However, if using city water or well water, the lime present in the water will in time accumulate in the heating coils. When maintenance is neglected it will eventually over a long time clog your heating tubes. Depending on how severe the lime is in your water determines how often you need to clean your heater. Through the pumping method of water you simply use a few bottles of CLR to equal approximately a half of a gallon to pump into your water heater and let it dissolve the scaling that has accumulated.
The amount of hot water that you wish to have is a simple equation of gallons of water ready for use, pounds of propane ready for use, and the amount of battery storage power ready for use for water pumping. The right balance of these three supplies will enable you to have an independent utility free capability of producing endless hot water.
Other things to take into consideration are the following: The direct vent straight up will keep you from using an electric blower which will use more electricity. This is the best way to vent your on demand propane heater. Going by the specifications of your on demand water heater is very important in the venting of your water heater. Going by the water heater specifications is also important for your water supply and the propane gas line leading to your water heater. The activated charcoal filter is recommended for your most pure healthy water source.
The location of your water heater should be as close as possible to your most used shower. The size of your water heater is determined by how many showers you wish to operate at the same time. A half of a gallon per minute flow rate water heater is adequate for a household with one shower and normal sink operations. A variable temperature control flow adjustment solar water heater measures the temperature of the water coming in to back up a solar water heating system from the sun or a wood burner heating element used in your wood stove to heat the water. A drain back water valve system needs to be in place if the water heater is ever exposed to temperatures below 32 degrees Fahrenheit as the heater is only heating the water while in use. This is the set of valves that allows the water to drain out of your heater while not in use, while on vacation, or when the expected temperatures are below 32 degrees Fahrenheit.
Electricity has become society's most used asset and valuable in so many different ways. The uses stretch from space all the way down to the furthest depths of the sea. When you think about it and try to imagine a day without electricity think about how much your life would be different. From brushing your teeth, to the food you eat, to the car you drive, to all of the electronic gadgets, internet, cell phones, computers, lighting, air conditioning, and heating would be affected. This has been around for less than two centuries but, if we had to go without it for one day just one day how miserable would our lives be?
The national electric grid has forever changed America but, has also made us more vulnerable than we have ever been. Remember just a few years ago when a tree limb knocked out 1/3 of America's power from 9 seconds for up to two months in some areas. I can think of no better simple thing that has happened that shows just how vulnerable we really are. The real possibilities of you being without power in your own home for months or even years is not out of the question. Things from solar flares, cyber attacks, or physical attacks to the grid can do just that. We should go back as responsible people to what our people founded this country on and that was independence. Electricity is no exception to the rule.
By having your own independent way of producing electricity your life will be more stable than you could ever imagine. Making electricity from the sun is the most stable, predictable, and most reliable way of producing electricity. 12 to 16 volt variable solar panels are the most basic solar panels but, they also make 24 volt solar panels that can be wired in series that can produce a 48 volt system. I prefer the 12 to 16 volt system for the fact that you can utilize 12 volt electricity in numerous ways without an inverter that loses power. You can use inverters to convert a 12 volt, 24 volt, also a 48 volt system to 120 volts, 240 volts, or 480 volts. Different inverters have different power losses from 10% to 30% depending on the quality of the inverter.
Storing your power in batteries is necessary to have a standalone system or a parallel system. When you store your electric power from your system in batteries a very significant amount of power is lost. This is necessary to have a standalone system that is grid free. This is also necessary in a parallel system. Grid-tie photovoltaic solar power will not go into the batteries in the future but, directly onto the grid. This will accumulate a credit by a power exchange with the electric company. Electric companies need to be made to do this as they are unwilling and/or unable to do this in most states. By storing your own power anywhere in the world you can have your own independent utility system that is free of water and electric companies. Your solar electric may be used for factory, businesses, or any other household needs.
Chapter FourHeating — Vent Free Radiant Heat and Wood Heating
Heating is one of the most vitally important things that a household must have. The sources of heat are highly depended on your household location. You must utilize what is best for your particular location in the mindset of cheap, free, and most abundant resources.
I will start off by talking about all of the different free sources of heat that is possible to utilize. My favorite source would be the hot air panels. The hot air panels simply make heat by the sun passing onto the panel powered by a fan that runs off of the sun. This will give you a good source of hot air that is dependable when the sun is out in a sunny location with a 70 degree angle facing south or north in the southern hemisphere . The hot air panel manufacturer will tell you the specifications and what to anticipate from it. This is one way to have a completely free and totally green hot air supply.
Another method of producing hot air with the same concept but, more difficult is instead of hot air you heat a liquid by the same solar panel method. You take that liquid and put it into a large heat collector that is calculated to last several days. Then you take a geothermal loop from below ground that is calculated to have the capacity to last several days and have an automatic thermal adjusting unit that mixes the two in a heat exchanger that gives you the temperature that you desire. You have two methods of utilizing the temperature that you want your house to be at that point.
1.) The traditional coil unit that air passes through going through your central air ducts is replaced with a coil unit that the fluid passes through to heat or cool your house by a blower that can also be powered by the sun. The fluid is also pumped by the power of the sun. 2.) A newer method that takes the temperature through the heat exchanger passing the temperature through radiant heating tubes and these tubes will run throughout your floor that is made of concrete to evenly spread the temperature that will keep your house at that temperature that you chose by the heat coming up from your floor. This method requires only pumps that can be operated from the sun. You have no air flow that carries dust or other unhealthy airborne particles. This method is also a 100% totally green way of heating and cooling your house to your desired temperature.
I will go on to talk about simpler and cheaper methods to utilize from your location. You might have a source of natural gas below your property that can be tapped for use for all of your household heating needs, as well as a gas generator. This is free but, not green. You may live in the woods and have an abundance of wood from trees that you can harvest. You do this by taking the dead ones first of course or using the biggest trees from your property leaving the small ones to replenish the woods. This is a carbon neutral way of heating for free. I absolutely do not ever recommend electric heat under any circumstance or situation. The power company that you depend on will charge you a small fortune and is not dependable in any emergency situation.
Heating your house with electric heat, I also do not recommend, from solar. The most important aspect of heating needs to be focused on independent utility systems. The self-reliance along with sustainability for you and your family needs to rely on your independence of heat.
A very cost effective way that is not necessarily green but, 98% efficient is the vent-free propane radiant heater. A calculated source of propane to fuel your radiant heater can give you a dependable, reliable source of fuel that can be calculated to last for up to five years without fail. A radiant heater has no moving parts to wear out and will operate decade after decade. One other source people commonly use is natural gas. I do not support this unless previously mentioned that you get it from your own property underground. Anytime that you rely on utility companies monthly bills will occur and inflation will happen. Depending on someone else such as utility companies will leave you vulnerable.
Chapter FiveSolar Panels
The placement of your solar panels is the most vital and important part of your independent utility system. You need to think of your solar panels as one gigantic circuit. Bird droppings, leaves, debris, or even the shading of a telephone wire across your panels can reduce your power output by 15%. Shade just three of the solar cells and your power loss is 50%. Your ability to be able to remove snow and keep them clean is vitally important. Treating the solar panels with rain x will help to shed heavy snow, as well as keep dirt and debris off of them. I prefer the yard mounted system for that reason. The angle of your panel depends on how much maintenance and adjustment that you wish to contribute. A 17 degree south facing mount is best, unless you are in the southern hemisphere, then it needs to be facing north if you wish to have a system that requires no adjustment throughout the year. A flat mount is best on the equator. There are charts that are accurate from any location in the world that will show you a precise angle for maximum solar production.
Panels can vary a lot in wattage from as little as 15 watts 12 volt DC, to as much as 165 watts 12 volt DC. This amount can vary a lot from manufacturer to manufacturer. 24 volt solar panels are also available which carry a significant higher wattage around 250 watts. This can be wired in series to create a 48 volt system. Keep in mind when you wire in series you extend the scope of your circuit which means any shading will even more significantly affect power loss.
Some manufacturers offer a dirt resistance glass and most are well protected from sizeable hail. When mounting your solar system a thing such as the weight of the system needs to be accounted for when placing on a roof. A wind load from wind resistance also needs to be taken into consideration. When I last checked 80% of PV is made outside of America with Japan, China, France, Sweden, and many other countries that are producing PV out there. Thin film solar modules typically black in color work much better in cloudy climates but, they only have a 15 to 25 year life expectancy. Monolithic crystal and typically blue in color have a much longer life expectancy of up to 80 plus years without fail with a normal warranty of 25 years.
The weakest link of a solar system always will be the wires. I strongly recommend every connection from the panel to the battery bank always be soldered or at least have an anticorrosion dressing applied. Depending on how much PV you have in your array will determine how big of wires that you need to carry the watts and amps. You can go by the national electric code book that is updated yearly for the most current updated specifications. The amount of PV you wish to use totally depends on the amount of load you plan on connecting to the PV. There are worksheets out there to help you do the math in coming up with the size of your PV system.
Chapter SixBattery Banks
Think of your battery bank just like a bank account with the amount that you put in it as the amount that you can spend. Your battery bank gives you the ability to power your house without the power company at night time or during cloudy days. Your battery bank is a key element in that as long as you have sufficient power you can operate an inverter that can produce 120 volts or 240 volts that will supply power to your whole household.
The weakest link in your battery bank is the weakest cell in the battery bank. The way this is tested is with a battery acid tester that will show you when you have a dead cell in a battery. This is important because, if you have a dead cell your entire battery bank will only charge up to the level of the weakest cell in the battery bank. That is why it is important to replace the battery that has the dead cell. Water levels need to be monitored and added to with distilled water to level when it is low. The charge controller will help by stopping the charging of the batteries when they reach a 100% charge. I recommend sizing your battery bank large enough that it reaches around 70% to make your batteries last longer. This will also keep you from losing solar power.
Excerpted from Solar Independent Utility Systems Manual by Kyle William Loshure Copyright © 2011 by Kyle William Loshure. Excerpted by permission of AuthorHouse. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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Table of Contents
Chapter 1) Refrigeration....................1
Chapter 2) Water Heating....................3
Chapter 3) Electricity....................5
Chapter 4) Heating — Vent Free Radiant Heat and Wood Heating....................7
Chapter 5) Solar Panels....................9
Chapter 6) Battery Banks....................11
Chapter 7) Inverters....................15
Chapter 8) DC Lighting or Direct Current Lighting....................17
Chapter 9) AC Lighting or Alternating Current Lighting....................19
Chapter 10) DC Power Supply or Direct Current Power Supply....................21
Chapter 11) AC Power Supply or Alternating Current Power Supply....................23
Chapter 12) Wire Sizing....................25
Chapter 13) DC Water Pumping....................27
Chapter 14) Water Filtration....................29
Chapter 15) Rain Collection System....................31
Chapter 16) Spring Water System....................33
Chapter 17) Water Storage System....................35
Chapter 18) Water Recycling System....................37
Chapter 19) Cooking Methods....................39
Chapter 20) Fuses AC and DC....................41
Chapter 21) Water Conservation System....................43
Chapter 22) Photovoltaic Solar Array Positioning/Sizing/Placement....................45
Chapter 23) Grid-Tie Photovoltaic System....................47
Chapter 24) Sending Your Power Back to the Grid....................49
Chapter 25) Parallel Photovoltaic System....................51
Chapter 26) Standalone Photovoltaic System....................53
Chapter 27) Hydrogen Production....................55
Chapter 28) Propane Storage....................57
Chapter 29) Radiant Heat....................59
Chapter 30) Geothermal Cooling....................61
Chapter 31) Air Conditioning....................63
Chapter 32) Insulation....................65
Chapter 33) Lightning Harvesting....................67
Chapter 34) Conservation....................69
Chapter 35) Construction....................71
Chapter 36) Powering Electric Vehicles from your Solar System....................73
Chapter 37) Alternative Fuels For Vehicles....................75
Chapter 38) Water PSI....................77
Chapter 39) The Benefits of Going Green....................79
Chapter 40) Power Outages (Grid)....................81
Chapter 41) Tesla Technology....................83
Chapter 42 Franklin....................85
Chapter 43) Einstein....................87
Chapter 44) Thomas Edison....................89
Chapter 45) Watts....................93
Chapter 46) Volts....................95
Chapter 47) Amps....................97
Chapter 48) Megahertz....................99
Chapter 49) Sine Waves....................101
Chapter 50) Modified Sine Waves....................103
Chapter 51) Square (Block) Sine Waves....................105
Chapter 52) Pure Sine Waves....................107