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Domestic Hot Water and Heating

Austria: Siko Merges Online Marketing and Traditional Sales Approach

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on June 1, 2016
Siko NaturkraftheizungOnline sales models are gradually gaining a foothold in the heating market. While a rising number of companies has addressed customers directly, others leave the task to the installers. Austrian company Siko has found a way to merge both models. The screenshot shows an offer for a solar thermal system from the company´s online shop at naturkraftheizung.com (translated: heating with natural energy).
Screenshot: naturkraftheizung.com
 

Israel: Winter Hail Storm Boosts Replacement Rate

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on May 31, 2016
ElsolLast year, the Israeli market saw a significant increase in newly installed glazed collector area, showing a total of 428,750 m² or a 9 % increase compared to the previous year. Eli Shilton, Managing Director of Israeli solar thermal system supplier Elsol, believes that a hail storm last winter was responsible for the greater demand for system replacement. “Since local collectors have standard glass covers, the hail storm broke a lot of the glass,” Shilton explained and added: “People are not worried about it, as the systems were covered by insurance and most owners will be reimbursed for all of the damage caused.” Thirty years of experience have made Eli Shilton a well-recognised expert in the Israeli solar thermal industry. The photos show centralised solar thermal systems on new multi-family buildings in Israel.
Photos: Elsol
 

Germany: Thermondo Digitalises Heating Industry Planning and Sales

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on May 29, 2016
Thermondo Management TeamStart-up Thermondo, based in Berlin, Germany, has turned the tables on sales and planning methods for home heating systems. Not only does the company generate its turnover online, it also leaves most of the planning for heating installations to a computer algorithm called “Manfred”. Surprisingly, Philipp Pausder, one of the two managing directors of Thermondo, said that the most important outcome of the new strategy wasn’t low prices but great service. The photo shows Thermondo’s three founding members (from left): Philipp Pausder, Florian Tetzlaff and Kristofer Fichtner.
Photo: Thermondo
 

Armenia: Green Leasing Programme to Fund Solar Water Heaters at Hotels

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on May 16, 2016
Tufenkian Hotel 1Armenia, a small country in South Caucasus, is home to an innovative financing scheme for solar thermal systems and other energy efficiency measures. In 2014, Armenian ACBA Leasing launched the Green Leasing programme for small and medium enterprises from any industry. According to an article published on 24 March 2016 on Armenian news website news.am, Green Leasing had already helped fund several solar thermal systems for different customers, such as seven hotels, four catering businesses and more than 20 service companies. One of the most well-known customers was the Tufenkian Hotel in Yerevan, Armenia’s capital: The roof installation of 1,140 vacuum tubes was done in December last year (see photo). 
Photo: Shtigen
 

China, India and USA: Study Recommends Policies for Energy-Efficient Water Heaters

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on April 18, 2016
ClaspA study by US non-profit organisation Clasp, British management consultancy Waide Strategic Efficiency and other partners has analysed the market potential of efficient water heater technology, among them solar thermal systems and heat pumps in China, India and the USA. The 176-page document Policy Opportunities for More Efficient Residential Water Heating shows the key differences between markets and policies and gives advice on policy measures to reduce the energy consumption of water heaters. One central recommendation is to implement energy efficiency labels, which would allow customers to compare different water heater technologies. No such labelling has been in place yet in any of the three countries. The chart shows the Chinese energy label, which is only used for gas combi boilers, the Indian label for electric storage water heaters and the US label for gas-storage water heaters. 
Figure: Clasp
 

Cuba: Solar Water Heating Could Reduce Pressure on Power Grid

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on March 22, 2016
CubasolarLuis Hilario Bérriz Pérez, President of the Cuban Society for the Promotion of Renewable Energy Sources (CUBASOLAR) has recently pointed out that 89 % of the island’s population had access to hot water, 80 % of them by using electric heaters mainly during peak hours, as Cuban radio Rebelde has cited the renewables expert. Hence, Bérriz Pérez wants to start using existing technology – namely solar water heaters produced in Cuba – on a major scale in order to take some pressure off the Cuban electricity grid. The figure shows the model of a solar water heater made in Cuba; it was taken from a guideline published by Bérriz Pérez in 2008.

Poland: Two More Public Hospitals to Get Collector System

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on March 18, 2016
Two hospitals in the adjacent municipalities of Gostynin and Płock in central Poland will be supplied by solar heat by the end of the year. Lucyna Koper, Project Coordinator at the Marcin Kacprzak Regional Hospital in Płock, confirmed that the two projects “have already entered the implementation phase and will be commissioned by the end of 2016. We have already signed the delivery contracts.” The installation will be carried out by a consortium of local companies, consisting of sanitary expert Envirotech and two installation companies specialised on renewable heating systems, Eco-Therm and Wachelka Inergis. The installers had already set up an 803 m2 system for the Pomeranian Centre of Traumatology in Gdańsk (see photo) some years ago. The trauma centre, which has more than 600 beds, had the collectors installed across several roofs of the building complex.
Photo: Eco-Therm

India: Hybrid Solar Heat Pump System Brings Power Consumption down by a Factor 10 on sunny days

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on March 16, 2016
 
A typical solar hot water system based on thermosiphon technology works only during sunny days. During monsoon and overcast days, however, it is necessary to use alternative means of heating, largely based on electricity. In addition, when more hot water is required temporarily, the solar thermal storage tank restricts the capacity available for the next day – unless auxiliary electrical heating is used. To improve hot water availability, Indian solar water heater manufacturer Emmvee Solar has developed a hybrid system called Solarizer Elite, a combination of a pumped solar system and a heat pump, which is suitable for large homes with hot water demand for multiple applications. Emmvee has installed around ten systems during a field test.
Photo: Emmvee Solar

Smart Heat: Ruvi Solar Highlights Customer Experience

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on March 14, 2016
Studies by different consulting companies, such as PricewaterhouseCoopers and Oliver Wyman, agree that information technology will revolutionise the energy sector from the ground up. Along with the trend of “digitalisation” goes the one of “customer centricity”, which means putting the end users’ preferences and way of thinking in the focus of product design – just as has been done by providers of convenience products. The energy sector in general and solar thermal in particular have hardly pushed the issue into the public spotlight. Now the Austrian start-up ruvi created a new solution to monitor solar thermal systems. The company’s novel approach: Make solar thermal easily understandable without forcing the user to read a manual. 
 

Lesotho, Mozambique and Zimbabwe: Solar Thermal Policies under Development

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on March 10, 2016
University ZimbabweA growing number of countries in Southern Africa follow the example of South Africa and Namibia to set targets and discuss regulations for an increased deployment of solar water heaters. The reasons are the acute power shortages and the fact that residential households spend 60 % of their electricity on hot water preparation when they use an electric geyser. Lesotho and Zimbabwe launched national strategies in September 2015 to ban electric geysers and Mozambique’s Minister of Science, Technology, Higher Education and Professional Training, Professor Jorge Olívio Nhambiu, confirmed the target of installing 0.1 m² collector area per capita by 2030, as had been defined in the Solar Thermal Technology Roadmap for Zimbabwe in November 2015. The photo shows the Solar Energy Mobile Training Unit showcased during an open day at the University of Zimbabwe.
Photo: SOLTRAIN Zimbabwe/2015

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