Solar panels, which are installed on the roofs of buildings, not only provide us with clean energy, but also cool homes and workplaces. This conclusion was reached by a group of researchers led by Jan Kleissl, a teacher of environmental engineering at the Jacobs School of Engineering at the University of California San Diego (USA).
Solar panels cool houses
Solar panels keep houses cool
In the journal Solar Energy, Kleissl and his team published an article containing the first peer-reviewed data on the cooling effect of solar photovoltaic panels. Using thermal scanning, the researchers determined that during the daytime, the roof of a building covered with solar panels was 5 degrees Fahrenheit colder than a roof without panels. At night, the panels help retain heat, thereby reducing heating costs in winter.
As more and more residential and commercial buildings are equipped with solar panels, Kleissl says there is an increasing need to determine the impact of solar panels on overall energy costs. A team of researchers found that savings on building cooling amounted to an amount equal to 5% of the cost of solar panels. In other words, savings in cooling adds 5% solar power to the grid.
Researchers collected data for the study using a thermal infrared camera over three days on the roof of the Powell Structural Systems Laboratory at the Jacobs School of Engineering. The building is equipped with inclined solar panels that are flush with the roof. In some sections of the roof, the panels are not installed. According to scientists, the panels play the role of a protective screen, taking on the sun’s rays and not letting them through to the roof. A large amount of heat is dissipated by the wind flowing between the panels and the roof. The cooling effect is increased when there is an open space allowing air to circulate between the panels and the building. Therefore, inclined panels provide the greatest cooling. In addition, the cooling effect also depends on the efficiency of the panels – the better the panels, the more cooling.
Despite the fact that the scientists collected data over a short period of time, they are confident that they have managed to develop a model that allows them to extrapolate their results to the magnitude of the cooling effect throughout the year.
DO SOLAR PANELS COOL YOUR ROOF?
If you’ve bought an solar panel system or are looking to buy one and are wondering, “Do solar panels cool your roof?”
While discussions on solar panels that focus on their effectiveness, value in terms of money and viability for businesses and homes are crucial, it is essential to take into consideration the way solar panels help keep the buildings cool.
Before we dive into this, it is important to understand that solar panels are not meant to substitute insulation materials in the construction of the roof or building. However, there are a few benefits of having solar panels placed on your roof in regards to cooling your building.
Also, Can the Solar Panels Help Cool the Roof?
If you do not are working on a roof or a roof, you may not realize the amount of energy a dark, shady surface is able to absorb. On the hottest day of summer, roofs can experience temperatures as high as 70 ° Celsius.
The roofing materials are developed to withstand the intense temperature, the extreme temperatures can lead to strain on roofing material. The heat generated by your roof will be transferred to the building and home and raise the temperature. Even if your home and roof is well-designed with sufficient airflow, it can put a lot of pressure on your cooling system.
So, “Do solar panels cool your roof?” Yes. Let’s take a study of the process.
How Can Solar Panels keep buildings cool?
Solar panels keep your house cool by providing a protective protection and decreasing the energy used from your roofing. Solar panels are thought to generate energy when they convert the sun’s energy into electricity. But, that’s not the situation. Actually, solar panels absorb energy that is otherwise transferred onto your roofing.
“But how can solar panels help cool the roof absorption of the heat?” you may be thinking.
Another method of looking at this is to consider shading. On a hot , sunny day the coolest spot is the shade. Solar panels offer a continuous shade on top of your structure, which reduces the temperature of your roof.
The majority of the heat that is absorbed by the panels are taken away by what’s known as a convection flow. Convection current refers to the flow of air through spaces between panels and the roof. The heat generated by the solar panels and roofing materials is reduced as air moves between them, reducing the heat of your roof, and further cooling the structure. Based on the structure of the roof it could even be equipped with inclined solar panels. These arrays are tilted and have more distance between panels as well as the exterior of the roof as opposed to other solar array types. This makes a wider channel where air can move between the roof and panels and the roof, thereby increasing the temperature.
As efficient solar panel technology is, greater cooling effects will be. It is also possible to build up heat on solar panels as a result of the inefficiency of conversion. If your solar panels are more effective in converting sunlight into electricity the less the operating temperature and the more effective the cooling effect it has on your roof.
An study carried out by a group of researchers from the University of California San Diego discovered that roof panels can reduce the temperature of a roof by 38 percent. This is a huge amount, especially when you consider the average and roof temperatures that we experience in Australia. Although it’s impressive, it’s important to remember that each solar array is unique. The results will differ based on the solar position and roof, based on your roof’s design, the area of your panels, and the kind of panels you own.
Therefore it’s not just that solar panels assist in keeping your roofing cool; also the panels also take energy which would otherwise be heating your house. The energy is converted into renewable energy that can be used to power your home and other appliances.
Other Benefits of Installing Solar
Apart from maintaining your roof clean as well, but what’s other advantages of putting in solar panels to your commercial or residential property?
More Reflection of Heat Energy
What can solar panels do to protect your roof during the summer? They do not shield your roof from summer heat; however they do offer similar cooling effects you get from insulation.
Even though solar cells are black or dark blue and absorb a significant amount in heat, they reflect some of the sunlight that comes into them. Solar panels are made of aluminum frames and are coated with glass, which reflect some of the energy away. Since the more heat is reflecting off of your roof, it absorbs less heat. This leads to lower temperatures in the building.
Lowered Shock to Thermal
In certain conditions, your roof may be extremely hot in the daytime and rapidly cool when the sun sets. The stark contrast in temperature can cause the roofing materials to expand and shrink. In time, this could cause warping and gaps between the roofing materials because of thermal shock.
Solar panels help stop thermal shock since they keep material used for roofing from reaching these high temperatures. When the sun sets the solar panels aid in the retention of some heat, and decrease the speed at which material is cool. The lessening of the impact of thermal shock can prolong the life of your roofing materials and safeguard the integrity of your roof’s structure.
Reducing UV Radiation
Depending on the material used for your roof the UV rays of your roof may dry out the oil that is on the roof. Particularly with timber, UV rays can cause bleaching and cracking. In addition, asphalt shingles could suffer the same problem. These effects of degradation occur over a long period of years, and you don’t notice it happening. The roofing materials beneath the solar panels are shielded from elements and exposure to UV. The solar panels that are installed on your roof will not just aid in improving the thermal efficiency of your home but generate pure energy. It can also extend the longevity of the roofing materials.
Reduced the cost of cooling
Due to the lower heat energy that is absorbed by the roof of your building, solar panels decrease how much energy you’ll need to cool the structure. The same study conducted by researchers from UC San Diego found that the panels’ cooling effects enhanced the energy efficiency of the building by five percent.
The above examples show the positive impact solar panels have on your building, they do not impact your building’s efficiency in thermal terms The results can vary based on the manner in which your panels are placed and mounted. If you are installing solar panels the main factor that determines the placement and orientation of them should be to ensure the most favorable conditions to maximize solar energy production.
No matter how they’re installed or the extent to which the roof area is covered with solar panels, you’ll have a system producing green, sustainable energy. If you’re trying to improve the efficiency of your home’s energy use, solar panels can be a fantastic option to enhance ventilation and the right roofing materials.
Solar panels not only help cool your roof and cut down on costs for cooling through reflection of heat, they also offer a green energy source. The energy produced from your panels can be used to provide power to any electric cooling system that keeps your house nice and cozy.
What Can Solar Panels Aid in Insulating Your Roof in Winter?
In the same way that solar panels shield your roof from excessive heat during summer, the panels can also aid your roof in keeping it warmer in the winter. The reason for this is that solar panels slow down the rate of how your roof is cooled by storing the heat. While not as significant in their effect as in the daytime solar panels, they can decrease the speed of cooling your roof down and keep your home warm during the evening.
So, do solar panels cool your roof? Yes! They can reduce the amount that is absorbed by your roof, and generate green, sustainable energy along the way. It is not just that installing solar panels is an excellent way to make use of renewable, clean energy and cut down on your electricity bills and carbon emissions. They can also help you save money by boosting the energy efficiency of your house by reducing cooling and heating costs.
If you’re looking to reap the numerous benefits that solar-powered technology can provide you. Then take a look at Captain Green. Captain Green is a leading solar company. Captain Green, we have installed and witnessed the advantages from solar power panels across Australia for more than 10 years. We offer our customers the most efficient solution for solar that is acclaimed throughout the world. Our experienced and highly qualified team has assisted in the installation of more than 270,000 solar panels. If you’d like to know more information about the benefits of solar panels, or to discuss your solar options, speak with the Captain Green team at Captain Green today.