Solar desiccant air-conditioning is an emerging technology that offers the promise of reducing reliance on grid connected electricity for providing comfort air-conditioning. Development of a method of assessing the seasonal energy savings of these devices would enable a fair comparison with alternative devices. This could be used in policy support mechanisms to assist industry growth.
Here the authors describe the application of the Component Testing System Simulation method to predict the energy savings of solar air-conditioners using the same approach as that applied successfully in the Australian solar hot water industry. The CTSS approach is made possible by the development of a new simplified generic model of the desiccant air-conditioner component. The performance of the generic model is evaluated for five different air-conditioner designs. The results suggest that the approach is valid for estimating the annual energy savings. The method will be documented in a provisional Australian Standard to be released in 2013.
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A rapid review on green-rated office buildings, and their operational energy use, found that the conclusions of six studies ranged from the certified buildings performing worse, similarly or much better than the non-certified buildings in terms of energy usage intensity. Two...Read more
In response to feedback, high-income households can reduce their energy use to a larger degree than low-income households (17% vs 3% reduction). This and other insights were gained by two rapid reviews into research, both Australian and International, on digital services and...Read more
Solar heating and cooling (SHC) systems are currently under rapid development and deployment due to their potential to reduce the use of fossil fuel resources and to alleviate greenhouse gas emissions in the building sector – a sector which is responsible for ~40% of the world energy use. Absorption chiller technology (traditionally powered by natural gas in large buildings), can easily be retrofitted to run on solar energy. However, numerous non-intuitive design choices must be analyzed to achieve the best techno-economic performance of these systems.
This paper explores the potential for solar thermal cooling to succeed commercially, and more specifically, the application scenarios where this is most likely. This mainly philosophical contribution hopes to highlight directions for future research.
Solar-assisted cooling technology has enormous potential for air-conditioning applications since both solar energy supply and cooling energy demand are well correlated. Unfortunately, market uptake of solar cooling technologies has been slow due to the high capital cost and limited design/operational experience.