SOLAR Solutions

Seawater greenhouse – just add solar

 Seawater greenhouse – just add solar

By Sophie Vorrath -RenewEconomy on 19 April 2012

South Australia’s Port Augusta, with its abundant solar resource, has recently been pegged as the ideal location for the development of a concentrating solar thermal power plant – and understandably so.

But what about a 2000 square metre greenhouse? It would seem an unlikely match for hot, dry Port August, yet while the region’s CSP plant proposal remains just that, an enormous solar-powered greenhouse has indeed been built – and it’s producing a fine crop of tomatoes.
Behind the project is Sundrop Farms: a group of international scientists (and an investment banker) whose goal has been to devise a system of growing crops that doesn’t require a fresh water supply. How does it work? “It all begins with a 70 metre-long stretch of solar panels,” says Pru Adam’s on ABC Radio’s Landline: a series of concave mirrors which focus the sun’s energy onto a black tube that runs through the centre of the panels. The tube is filled with thermal oil, which is superheated up to 160°C, then pumped through the tube back to a little storage shed, where its heat is transferred to a water storage system. Some of this stored heat goes towards greenhouse temperature control, some to powering the facility, but most is used for desalination of the tidal bore water. When the heat goes to the thermal desal unit it meets up with relatively cold seawater and the temperature difference creates condensation.
“It’s pretty simple to understand,” said Reinier Wolterbeek, Sundrop’s project manager and head of technology development, in a 2010 television interview with Southern Cross News. “If you have a fresh water bottle from your refrigerator, and you put it in a room, then condensation forms on the sides. That’s more or less what we try to mimic over here; the cold sea water, from the ground, we put it through plastic tubes, we blow hot, very moist air against these plastic tubes, condensation forms on the tubes, we catch the condensation, and that’s actually the irrigation for the tomato crops.” The brine ends up in ponds and the salt can be extracted as a saleable by-product.
Sundrop Farms Solar Desalination
So, while this large-ish commercial-scale greenhouse (they’ve tested a smaller version in Oman), perched, as Adams describes it, “in the remains of flogged-out farmland,” really is an incongruous sight in Port Augusta, it’s there for good reason.
“We looked on a world map, and funnily enough, Port Augusta is the ideal place,” Wolterbeek told Southern Cross News. “It’s really close to the sea, so we have a lot of seawater available, and it’s very dry, which is good for the process of the technology.”
Philipp Saumweber, Sundrop’s managing director who is a former Goldman Sachs investment banker with an economics degree from Harvard, describes the project as unique. “Nobody has done what we’re doing before and to our knowledge nobody has done something even similar,” Saumweber told Landline. “What we think is so unique about our system is we’re not just addressing either an energy issue or a water issue, we’re really addressing both of those together to produce food from abundant resources and do that in a sustainable way.”
David Travers – CEO of the University College London’s Adelaide office, who became Sundrop’s chairman after being convinced of the merit of its technology – agrees. “Well it’s unique in the sense that it’s the only example we’re aware of in the world where there’s that complete integration of the collection of solar energy, the desalination of water, the production of energy sources from electricity through to heating and storage and then the growing of plants, in this case tomatoes and capsicums, in a greenhouse environment,” he told Landline. “It’s the totality of that system that makes it quite unique.”
More CLICK HERE:
AND Below:
http://www.sundropfarms.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/ADV06MAR12STF06.pdf

The intriguing mystery of Solar PV policy in Australia

By Nigel Morris on 16 August 2012

Reproduced with kind permission:  Nigel Morris / http://solarbusiness.com.au
Many years ago, I recall a debate at a Clean Energy Council conference where we all agreed that a consumer guide to solar PV was an essential and much needed tool.
After many years, this has evolved into a very comprehensive booklet that is freely available to consumers and industry alike and to some degree, sets the benchmark for what consumers should look for and expect when buying solar PV.
As our industry and market evolves however, the complexity of seemingly minuscule details contained within this guide requires ever increasing research and effort to get right.
We have been fortunate to contribute in a small way to this guide over the years and have just completed a new analysis and table which will be released in the latest edition.
Page eleven of the guide contains a seemingly innocuous guide to what consumers can expect in terms of daily and annual revenue’s from a “typical solar system in average conditions, based on current FIT’s”
Let me tell you, in today’s policy climate, updating this table turned into nothing short of  an “intriguing, investigative mystery case.” Hyerbole you say? No way, this took all my connections, a lot of work and raised some fascinating issues about the state of play in Australia.
My primary analytical tool starts with Australian Energy Market Commission  data from late 2011. This crucial document is one of the few places you can find well researched facts on the forecast retail price of electricity, what it’s made up of and includes vital statistics on average energy consumption and such.
However, we know things have changed so I set out to create a comparison of these rates to current rates. This is where it started to get difficult because as we all know, the number of retail offers and market complexity out there beggars belief.  However, we used regulated rates where available and where they weren’t, we researched the typical rates that we could get until we got  a good sense of what was a reasonable balance between the two.
Ultimately, it’s impossible to cover every combination and permutation of offers and rates and the implications for consumers with PV, but we did arrive with an average variation of 10% (under) what the AEMC had forecast – pretty close. Most States were under but a couple were above, interestingly.
Armed with this and aware that in a highly volatile and competitive market lower than average offers are inevitable,  we proceeded to do some calculations about what that meant for solar consumers under different export scenario’s.
We modelled 5 per cent, 25 per cent, 50 per cent and 75 per cent export ratio’s ( which correlate roughly with what industry and IPART have said over the years) to establish the amount of offset and exported energy could be expected based on average household consumption levels.
This is an increasingly vital statistic owing to the fact that with the proliferation of NET FIT’s (or indeed a lack of them), calculating financial returns relies on combining the savings (offset) and the exports.
Then we triple checked the FIT’s and some of the terms and conditions around them and the plot thickened even more. Anyone who operates Nationally kind of knows this stuff, but its always good to get a refresher and dig a little deeper. Firstly, just finding out what solar rates are available is not easy because they vary depending on the retailer, the tariff structure, the terms and conditions of  the offer, your location and so on. FWIW, the National average flat rate is hovering around $0.226 c/kWh, with a high of $0.253c/kWh and a low of $0.170 c/kWh (excluding gst and fixed charges).
As an example, I had a conversation with a broker about swapping just this week who was adamant he could offer me a great deal if I switched and locked in, and assured me that they could retain my $0.60c Gross FIT and add in an $0.08c bonus, which my current retailer recently took away. My mother in law recently switched to this deal so I know its real and is presumably a customer acquisition incentive.
However, when I pushed him on the terms and conditions around it (eg “these rates may increase with regulated rate changes blah blah blah”) I stopped him and highlighted that my understanding is that the regulated rate in NSW is now actually $0.52c plus a mandatory $0.077c contribution from retailers which reflects the windfall profits they were making from my exported solar energy – “so which rate are you referring to,” I asked?
My fear of course was that they would sign me up, then in a few months say “oh no, the government reduced their rate to $0.52c so now the total is $0.60c.” This sent him into a confused panic and he promised to call me back, which he hasn’t done so far.
Co-incident to this issue is the fact that, as Solar Choice and Giles Parkinson’s RenewEconomy noted this week, IPART have mysteriously deleted any (voluntary) rates from their “myenergyoffers” web site recently, removing the much touted “openness and transparency” that was much needed for consumers, and committed to by the NSW Energy Minister. Perhaps it should be renamed “mycompletelackofenergyoffers” .
All of this research also highlighted an apparent trend in trying to utterly confuse customers about what they are really paying for electricity. Take the innocuous little “daily fixed charges” part, for example. This is universally quoted  in addition to the energy rate and is on average $0.58c a day with a low of $0.29c a day and a high of $0.99c a day. Small change? Appears so at a quick glance but when this is added to average daily energy costs, your effective cost of energy goes up by 16% on average, to $0.261 c/kWh. The lowest (standard) effective offer including these charges was $0.211 and the highest was $0.29c.
Given all of this, I decided to take a close look at the primary offers available around Australia for the table in question, because we can only provide indicative advice in such a negotiated energy market. (South Australia, for example, has an estimated 70 per cent of electricity customers on negotiated tariffs rather than regulated rates).
Of the 15 primary solar rates on offer around Australia,  I discovered that 53 per cent are either voluntary, or a combination of small mandatory rates plus additional voluntary contributions.
This leaves us in a fascinating position. On the one hand, it’s bad because it means we are at the mercy of electricity retailers (who could change policy at the stroke of a pen). On the other hand, it also demonstrates that incentives for solar PV owners are now a legitimate and widely used customer acquisition tool and/or, there are network benefits from PV that are worth paying out for. And that is good.
So, the table is done and, at a minimum, we now understand a little more about how things are changing, have the major offerings described for consumers for another year and there are some positive signals about retailer responses to solar PV.
Unfortunately for consumers, things are getting less transparent and offers ever harder to decipher. I suspect the electricity retailers may have engaged mobile phone billing companies to help enable their plans for market domination.
A concise, comparable and transparent electricity rate plan, anyone?
Nigel Morris is director of Solar Business Services

Is Australia & The Bellarine ready for the electric car ?

Charging station reflected in Holden Volt

MELBOURNE — Early this year, Victoria’s first solar-powered electric vehicle (EV) charging station was opened for public use at the CERES Community Centre.
By Lieu Thi Pham | June 27, 2012, 3:00 AM PDT
Extract from: http://www.smartplanet.com/blog/global-observer/is-australia-ready-for-the-electric-car/6038?tag=nl.e660
Charging station reflected in Holden Vault
The solar charging station, located in Melbourne’s north, is currently generating clean and renewable electricity to power the city’s EVs.
The initiative is a result of a collaboration between the Australian and Victorian governments, solar companies Q-CELLS Australia, who donated 12 Q.PROsolar photovoltaic (PV) modules, and Delta Energy Systems, who donated the solar inverter.
Over the past few years, the Australia Federal and Victorian governments have, to a degree, supported the renewable energy sector, particularly solar PV, through feed-in-tariffs and other rebates.
Given the importance of energy security, the launch of the solar charging station is a modest but significant milestone for Australia’s energy future.
“Australia is following a trend that has started in Europe”, Pfeiffer said. “The community is much more aware of the need to be more environmentally friendly. The Victorian Government is actively supporting this trend through its EV Trial of which the station at CERES forms part of.”
To date, EVs (and their hybrid cousins) have been met with some skepticism in Australia (despite the country’s abundance of solar energy). The nation’s slow adoption of EVs is centred on four sticking points; how efficient, expensive, capable (i.e. their range) and environmentally sustainable they are, in comparison to their petroleum-fuelled counterparts.
“Of course the idea of EVs is to curb our carbon footprint and to make our lives more sustainable,” Pfeiffer said. “Provided they run on electricity generated from renewables, electric cars do go some way toward addressing the issues of oil dependency and greenhouse gas emissions, as well as air and noise pollution from cars idling around densely populated cities.”
“But if they run on energy generated from coal-fired power, then they merely transfer pollution from Australia’s cities to rural locations and do nothing to reduce emissions. This is where solar PVs can greatly contribute,” Pfeiffer said.
Judy Glick, a CERES spokesperson, indicated that the CERES charging station is emission-free. “Our charge station is fitted with a 2.8KW PV system which is the size of a system needed to charge a standard vehicle. It is therefore possible to have no carbon emissions resulting from the use of an electric vehicle charged in this manner.
 

 
 
Solar modules donated by solar provider Q-Cells Australia capture energy from the sun to power greener electric vehicles.

Solar modules donated by solar provider Q-Cells Australia capture energy from the sun to power greener electric vehicles.

The CERES charge station is fitted with aChargePoint, which is the interface between the electricity source and the car charging apparatus.
The ChargePoint is compatible with all major electric vehicles on the market or about to come on the market.
According to research, electric cars have an average efficiency of 80%, which is much higher when compared to conventional gasoline engines that can effectively use only 15% of the fuel energy content, or diesel engines which can only achieve efficiencies of around 20% [Source: Shah, Saurin D. (2009). “2”. Plug-In Electric Vehicles: What Role for Washington? (1st ed.). The Brookings Institution. pp. 29, 37 and 43].
According to CERES, current electric vehicles will take around 5 hours to fully charge from a flat battery and costs about $3 compared to around $15-17 for petrol to get the equivalent distance of 100km. The ChargePoint is designed to deal with advances in vehicle and battery technology to enable faster charging in the future.
“To date, prices of EVs are still higher compared to conventional vehicles. However taking running and maintenance costs into consideration, EVs will become a viable option within the next few years,” Pfeiffer said.
“Sustainability and renewable energy in particular are still quite new concepts in Australia and have not yet received the same traction as in Europe and especially Germany. Public education about the benefits of sustainable transport options and its relative ease of implementation are issues that need to be tackled,” Pfeiffer said.
ChargePoint Chief Executive officer James Brown claimed that Australia’s late entry into the market has been an advantage. “Other countries have been ‘debugging’ the technology on our behalf and developing the appropriate charging solutions…” he said.
The high capital investment required to get EVs to market in an economically viable form has, to an extent, depended on the initial take up in larger markets such as the U.S., Europe and Japan.
In 2009 the global EV market was worth more than $26 billion. This market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 18.5% between 2010 and 2015, this will result in a $78 billion global market in 2015 [Source: the BCC].
 

The CERES charging station is part of the Victorian Electric Vehicle Trial, a government initiative that will help to roll out much more efficient transport options, to improve air quality in our cities and above all, to create new job opportunities for Australians.
Victoria is one of only 15 places worldwide where a car can be taken from design through to the showroom floor [Source: Victorian EV Trial website].
This Victorian EV Trial will run until mid-2014 with vehicle participants such as Holden, Toyota, Nissan, Mitsubishi, Blade Electric Vehicles, and EDay, all on aboard. The general public can take part in the trial by registering their interest to drive an electric powered vehicle for three months.
In 2011, the top-selling EV (the Mitsubishi i-MiEV) in Australia sold only 30 vehicles [Source: Drive]. Despite this low figure, Brown remained positive about Australia’s uptake of the EV in the coming years. ”Ten years down the track the expectation is that up to 20% of all new vehicles sold in Australia will be EVs,” he said.
Of course, the big oil companies claim that electric cars will never outnumber gasoline and diesel models. [Source: Reuters].
However, the Australian Government is confident that EVs will make up 20% of new car sales in Australia by the end of the decade and 45% by 2030.
The public release of the Nissan Leaf and the Mitsubishi i-MiEV (soon to be followed by the Holden Volt and the Renault Fluence) in Australia, seems to suggest that the country is ready for the electric car — but it still remains unclear just how quickly and successful this uptake will be.
Photo: © GM, courtesy of Holden Australia (main), CERES (insert).

Hybrid solar: How to kiss the grid goodbye

Hybrid solar: How to kiss the grid goodbye
By Jeff Bye on 30 March 2012
If ever there were a need to develop off-grid power systems it would have to be now, when transmission costs are now up to around 60 per cent of non-solar power bills.Solar energy power
Solar systems have historically been classified into two broad camps – “grid connected” or “off-grid” systems. This distinction has arisen due to historical segments of the market that needed solar to do different things. The vast majority of systems we see around Australia’s towns and cities are grid connected and have been driven by feed-in-tariffs and consumer desires to cut electricity costs and do something positive for the environment.
Off-grid systems have historically been the preserve of regional customers seeking to avoid expensive network augmentation costs to provide power to their remote locations. Off-grid systems are usually a lot more expensive as they require battery storage, more complicated control technology and often diesel backup generators to ensure the lights will always shine. Battery technology has also been a culprit as the memory effect of old-style lead-acid batteries has meant that battery arrays are oversized to ensure the depth of discharge is not high and hence battery life is extended.
An emerging trend though is for so-called hybrid systems which take a little from column A, and a little from column B. Such systems could either be described as an off-grid system which uses the grid as the standby generator or a grid-connected system with some added battery storage. Either way, these systems don’t require expensive diesel generators since the grid provides that service, and the size of the battery arrays can be downgraded as the cost of back-up power using off-peak grid electricity is much lower than that provided by diesel generators.
The technology that is making this possible is a new generation of products capable of directing energy flows as the consumer best desires. One such product is the PowerRouter which enables the home owner to optimise, control and manage any self-generated electricity. A homeowner in NSW appalled by their retailer’s offer for solar buyback, for instance, could arrange for excess solar yield to be diverted to their batteries for use at another time when electricity prices are higher. The batteries could also be re-charged on off-peak tariffs and re-used during peak periods as a straight arbitrage opportunity.
Another technological development is occurring in the battery sector with heavy investment by the auto-makers looking to reduce battery size and extend life using lithium-ion based solutions. Importantly, Li-ion batteries have no memory effect, so battery arrays can be better sized to suit demand. Intersolar fairs these days are increasingly showing attractive, compact and affordable Li-ion battery solutions capable of helping consumers make the jump to these hybrid systems. The introduction of electric vehicles with batteries will add another exciting dimension as the household battery storage effectively gains wheels and becomes mobile.
So where is this opportunity apparent in the Australian context today? There are probably three broad consumers to whom this hybrid model would appeal:
My grid keeps dropping out! Many solar consumers ask the question about what happens when the grid goes down? Unfortunately the answer they get is “so does your solar system in order to prevent injury to electrical line workers”. Having a hybrid model appeals to consumers who are looking for higher levels of reliability than their existing supply. A hybrid model would allow the home to effortlessly switch from solar to grid to battery as the need arises on a least-cost basis.
I hate my retailer, how can I get them back? Spite is a strong motivator and many consumers have just had enough of traditional electricity retailers. While the cost of completely switching off from the electricity grid (i.e. an off-grid system) is probably cost-prohibitive for most householders, installing a hybrid system would be a lower cost since there are no back-up generators and less battery storage. The original intent would largely be delivered.
The network won’t let me expand! Many consumers, especially businesses in regional locations, are constrained in their growth due to limitations imposed by the electrical networks. One recent customer owned a coffee shop in a small suburban Sydney shopping centre. The grid operator would not provide them with the 130A supply it needed without an expensive upgrade to a substation. The landlord and the shop owner went halves in a 10kW system which reduced their peak demand to the allowable 80A through a system of batteries and recharging off the grid when power is available. The system cost half as much as the substation option and will pay for itself in around 7 years – compare this to the sunk cost of the substation which would only make a return for the grid operator.
The larger policy implications of this shift are interesting. In 1999, the term Web 2.0 was offered forward as a description of the cumulative changes taking place in web development which facilitated greater collaboration, interoperability and information sharing. These days, more and more content on the web is user-generated and the nature of how we use the internet is vastly different from the embryonic, static website version of the 1990s.
Increasingly the electricity grid is moving towards Grid 2.0. Eventually, the networks will cease to become simply a delivery mechanism for electrons to your home and will morph into a shared network designed to help each energy user effectively manage their surplus or deficit of electrons to meet their needs. With this will come enormous changes to the business models of the network operators as customers gradually become more and more self-sufficient and use less and less from the grid.
The immediate response from network operators will most likely be higher peak demand charges to reflect the (in)tangible economic benefit offered to customers through the grid acting as the standby generator. As these charges start mounting, however, this will only encourage consumers to go the whole-hog and take their homes completely off-grid, thus completely avoiding network charges. Inevitably this will leave the grid a stranded asset – similar to the telegraph poles dotting the country side.
The response from networks operators should be more collaborative and understanding of the market dynamics and accepting of the new role they will likely have to play. This will involve changes to the asset’s valuation and pricing regimes – no small thing – but in the end will deliver better outcomes for society, the environment and energy users.
Jeff Bye is head of CBD Energy’s solar division

Best Bellarine Solar Solution at a Competitive Price


Bellarine Solar Centre Drysdale VictoriaBellarine Solar Centre – Your Solar Solution at a Competitive Price!

 

The Bellarine Solar Centre can help you understand how to evaluate the solar offers and terminology surrounding this confusing technology marketplace.

Our aim is to make it as simple as possible for you to get the best Bellarine solar solution at a competitive price.
Bellarine Solar Centre for all Solar Solutions

We will explain the different advantages of the various Photovoltaic ( PV) and Hot water systems and resellers, making it easier for you to come to an informed decision.
Why not call us now to cut through all this talk of REC’s, PV Kw’s, Feedback Tarrifs, etc. for a clear understanding of your requirements and actual costs and savings.
Do it now before the government decides to end the grant scheme that is saving you thousands!
Phone anytime on 0458 293 695 today!
Bellarine Solar Centre is a proud supporter and member of the Committee for Bellarine
 

Bellarine Solar Centre
recommend, Solart Smart Energy Solutionsand
Geelong Water Wise, InstallSolar Smart

 

Electricity Products

The Solar Smart offering is second to none!
Solar Smart electricity panels are designed to be highly efficient and are built with monochrystalline cells for their superior ability to convert sunlight into electrical power. The panels are compact and light making them quick, and easy to install on almost any roof.
We offer an extensive range of quality grid connect Solar Smart electricity panels to meet your needs and budget. Get an economical 1.52 kW system to cover much of your daytime power consumption needs and benefit from feed in tariffs from surplus power. Or if your budget allows, scale up to a larger generator such as a 4.9 kW system and dramatically reduce your reliance on grid power and earn much more from feed in tariffs.
Solar Smart solar electricity panels are professionally installed by our Clean Energy Accredited electricians, so you can have peace of mind that the job will be done right – the first time.

1.52kW System


8 x 190
 Watt Solar Panels
1.5kWW Approved Grid Connected Solar Inverter
Installed

1.9kW System


10 x 190
 Watt Solar Panels
2kWW Approved Grid Connected Solar Inverter
Installed by an accredited electrician

2.28kW System


12 x 190
 Watt Solar Panels
2kWW Approved Grid Connected Solar Inverter
Installed by an accredited electrician

3.04kW System


16 x 190
 Watt Solar Panels
3kWW Approved Grid Connected Solar Inverter
Installed by an accredited electrician

3.99kW System


21 x 190
 Watt Solar Panels
4kWW Approved Grid Connected Solar Inverter
Installed by an accredited electrician

4.94kW System


26 x 190
 Watt Solar Panels
5kWW Approved Grid Connected Solar Inverter
Installed by an accredited electrician


PHONE NOW FOR A PERSONAL QUOTATION, RELEVANT TO YOUR HOME AND SITUATION!


Solar Hot Water ProductsSolart Smart Energy Solutions

Solar Smart use only Chromagen brand solar water heaters.  Manufactured to a quality & performance standard, Chromagen water heaters are renowned around the world for their robust design and high solar energy efficiency ratings.  Solar Smart’s competitive supply and install prices, matched with some of the highest State & Federal Government rebates & incentives available, make installing a Chromagen solar water heater an obvious economical choice.

 

Thermosiphon Systems

Split Systems

Thermosiphon Systems

Solar Smart’s range of roof mounted, close coupled thermo siphon solar hot water systems have been designed specifically to provide energy efficient water heating for customers who enjoy the performance of a traditionally styled solar water heater.  The high performance, slim line solar collectors are connected directly to the highly insulated roof mounted solar storage tank, freeing up valuable ground space around your home.
Using only Chromagen solar collectors and storage tanks, Solar Smart’s range of solar water heaters are designed and built to a performance & quality standard.  With some of the highest Government rebates and incentives available, a Chromagen thermo siphon system is the obvious economical choice.
Available in frost protected and hard water specific models, with both Gas, or Electrically boosted systems available, Solar Smart have a solar water heater available to suit your needs.
 
 

Thermosiphon Systems – Gas boosted

Your new solar water heater is designed to utilize two energy sources operating simultaneously to provide you with energy efficient hot water.   Solar Smart’s range of solar / gas systems, maximize your solar savings by storing your solar heated water in an insulated, 200 or 300 litre, solar rated storage tank. This ‘pre heated’ water is then passed directly through a 5 or 6 Star rated Eternity series continuous flow gas water heater, which senses the incoming water temperature and adjusts the amount of gas used depending on how hot the incoming water is. The hotter the solar heated water – the less gas you use, ensuring you have never ending hot water 24 hours a day, 7 days week, at a cost that can be up to 80% lower than your current water heating bills.

 Thermosiphon Systems – Gas boosted

 
 
 

Thermosiphon Systems – Electrically boosted

Your new solar water heater is designed to utilize two energy sources operating simultaneously to provide you with energy efficient hot water.  Solar Smart’s range of 200 & 300 litre solar / electric systems maximize your solar savings by maintaining the temperature of the stored water through a combination of solar energy and electrical energy.
The system is thermostatically controlled so it operates automatically to maximize energy efficiency, while ensuring you always have adequate hot water.  This combination ensures that you have hot water whenever you need it, at a cost that can be up to 80% lower than your current water heating bills.

 Thermosiphon Systems – Electrically boosted

 

Split SystemsSolart Smart Energy Solutions

Solar Smart’s range of ‘split’ solar hot water systems have been designed specifically to provide both energy efficient water heating, without compromising the aesthetics of your home. The high performance, slim line solar collectors are fitted to your roof and the highly insulated storage tank is located either internally, or externally at ground level.
Using only Chromagen solar collectors and storage tanks, Solar Smart’s range of solar water heaters are designed and built to a performance & quality standard. With some of the highest Government rebates and incentives available, a Chromagen split system is the obvious economical choice.
Available in frost protected and hard water specific models, with either Gas or Electrically boosted systems available, Solar Smart have a solar water heater available to suit your needs.
 
 

Split Systems – Gas boosted

Your new solar water heater is designed to utilize two energy sources operating simultaneously to provide you with energy efficient hot water. Solar Smart’s range of solar / gas systems, maximize your solar savings by storing your solar heated water in an insulated, 200, 300 or 450 litre, solar rated storage tank. This ‘pre heated’ water is then passed directly through a 5 or 6 Star rated Eternity series continuous flow gas water heater, which senses the incoming water temperature and adjusts the amount of gas used depending on how hot the incoming water is. The hotter the solar heated water – the less gas you use, ensuring you have never ending hot water 24 hours a day, 7 days week, at a cost that can be up to 80% lower than your current water heating bills.
 

 product image

Split Systems – Electrically boosted

Your new solar water heater is designed to utilize two energy sources operating simultaneously to provide you with energy efficient hot water. Solar Smart’s range of 300 & 450 litre solar / electric systems maximize your solar savings by maintaining the temperature of the stored water through a combination of solar energy and electrical energy.
The system is thermostatically controlled so it operates automatically to maximize energy efficiency, while ensuring you always have adequate hot water. This combination ensures that you have hot water whenever you need it, at a cost that can be up to 80% lower than your current water heating bills.

 Solar Hot Water Split Systems Electrically boosted

 
Going Solar Smart is the smart way to secure a sustainable future for your family and beat the rising cost of electricity.


Solar Electricity Government Rebates

Like you, the Australian Government is committed to a cleaner and greener future and they are supporting your efforts to ‘go solar’ with their Renewable Energy Target (RET) Scheme. For Australian home-owners, this scheme assists you in the following ways:

The Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme (SRES):

This is the Government’s scheme that provides support for small, residential renewable energy systems such as solar electricity (PV) panels and solar hot water systems. The scheme allows owners of solar installations to create certificates that are eventually purchased by large energy retailers through a ‘green’ market. These large energy retailers are legally obligated to accumulate a certain amount of certificate per year to ensure a certain percentage of their energy generation is sourced from renewable energy…
Under this scheme the Government has created:

  • Small Scale Technology Certificates (STCs)
  • Solar Credits

Homeowners are eligible to create STCs if they install a solar electricity system (or solar hot water system) that generates renewable energy at their home.
Different solar electricity systems will – be eligible to create a different numbers of STCs. The bigger and more efficient the system, the more STCs can be -created.
STCs can be created with the Government regulator by the owner and sold -on the STC market, but typically the most practical way is for the home owner to assign the right to create their STCs to the Solar PV supplier or installer. This option is usually offered to you as an upfront discount on your system, which is a more attractive way to invest in solar.
Thee Solar Credit scheme as established by the Government for the purpose of providing homes, small businesses and other eligible premises an incentive for installing solar electricity systems.
The Solar Credit Scheme is a system within the Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme that provides a further

Feed?in Tariffs (FiT)

With a Solar Electricity system your home effectively becomes a mini solar power station. You generate your own electricity, and then sell it back to the power “grid” for use by your neighbours and other power users. The amount your power company pays you is known as a Feed-in Tariff. The state governments regulate the tariffs in their regions based on market conditions and established STC quotas.
A Feed-in Tariff will allow you to save evenn MORE on your electricity bills, and may significantly reduce your payback period.
Feed-in Tariffs vary from state to state within Australia and may be paid on a Net or Gross basis;
Gross FiT: In this scheme ALL of the electricity generated from the renewable energy source is purchased from the customer by the power company. The customer buys back any electricity they require from the grid.
Net FiT: In this scheme only surplus electricity generated from the renewable energy source is purchased from the customer by the power company.
Feed-in Tariffs may change at any time with little notice from the Government so please use the table below as a guideline only and check the relevant state government sites or the Clean Energy Council’s site for the most current information.
To find out more about Feed-in Tariffs please visit the Parliament of Australia’s library reference:
http://www.aph.gov.au/library/Pubs/ClimateChange/governance/domestic/national/feed.htm
To view the Clean Energy Council’s table of State Feed-in Tariffs, please click on the link below:
http://www.cleanenergycouncil.org.au/cec/resourcecentre/Government-Initiatives.html
 

State Link To
Government Site
Status of Scheme Max Size Rate Gross/Net As At
VIC Click Here 25 c/kWh feed-in tariff commenced 1/11/11. For tariff details, please seek advice from your electricity retailer. 5 kW 25c per kWh Net SEPT 2011

 
Disclaimer:
This table of Feed-in Tariffs is a guide only and information may change at any time without notice. Please research Feed-in Tariffs relevant to you, by visiting the links in the table above to your relevant state government.