How to Store Solar Energy Under a Concrete Slab
The idea of using a bed of sand under a concrete slab as a heat sink has been broached before, and John Klingel is wondering how, exactly, he should install PEX tubing to get the greatest possible benefit from the system. He poses that question in the GreenBuildingAdvisor Q&A forum.
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This isn’t the first time the idea has been broached, but the conversation in this Q&A Spotlight draws on the experience of someone who’s successfully used sand as insulated thermal mass to passively heat his home. The approach is not only relatively inexpensive, he says, but very effective, essentially allowing him to walk away from the house in 40-below weather without worrying that anything will freeze.
Still, skeptics doubt it can work as an active heating system, and wonder whether the cost of heating the sand to useful temperatures is really worth the trouble.
Read the whole article at Green Building Advisor.
Pumping solar-heated fluid through tubing embedded in sand. GBA experts ponder whether the heat gained from all this solar thermal equipment is worth the investment