Cold-Climate Solar Domestic Hot Water Systems Analysis

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper


The Solar Heating and Lighting Sub-program has set the key goal to reduce the cost of saved energy [Csav, defined as (total cost, $)/(total discounted savings, kWh_thermal)] for solar domestic water heaters (SDWH) by at least 50%. To determine if this goal is attainable and prioritize R&D for cold-climate SDWH, life-cycle analyses were done with hypothetical lower-cost components in glycol,drainback, and thermosiphon systems. Balance-of-system (BOS, everything but the collector) measures included replacing metal components with polymeric versions and system simplification. With all BOS measures in place, Csav could be reduced more than 50% with a low-cost, selectively-coated, glazed polymeric collector, and slightly less than 50% with either a conventional selective metal-glass ora non-selective glazed polymer collector. The largest percent reduction in Csav comes from replacing conventional pressurized solar storage tanks and metal heat exchangers with un-pressurized polymer tanks with immersed polymer heat exchangers, which could be developed with relatively low-risk R&D.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages5
StatePublished - 2005
Event2005 DOE Solar Energy Technologies Program Review Meeting - Denver, Colorado
Duration: 7 Nov 200510 Nov 2005


Conference2005 DOE Solar Energy Technologies Program Review Meeting
CityDenver, Colorado

Bibliographical note

Presented at the 2005 DOE Solar Energy Technologies Program Review Meeting held November 7-10, 2005 in Denver, Colorado. Also included in the proceedings available on CD-ROM (DOE/GO-102006-2245; NREL/CD-520-38557)

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/CP-550-38966


  • buildings
  • hot water systems
  • NREL
  • photovoltaics (PV)
  • PV
  • solar


Dive into the research topics of 'Cold-Climate Solar Domestic Hot Water Systems Analysis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this