Realized: June 2011
System: The solar heat pump system consists of Thermo|Solar 12 flat vacuum collectors TS400 as well as a heat pump 30kW specially made by the Latvian manufacturer "Fonons" with built-in two compressors (15 kWx2pcs), other equipment.
Guest house "Bērziņi" is located by the sea in Salacgriva region, Vitrupe. The complex will include a separate house for visitors of the guest house, the owner's house, a farm building with a sauna and a recreation area. Until now, heating needs throughout the complex were provided by the wood-fired central heating chisel "Atmos". Firewood for heating comes from its own private forest, so it is a cheap and easily available resource, but the homeowner recalculates the working hours and health care spent preparing and heating firewood, it became clear that the time spent can also be spent in a more pleasant way.
The Solar heat pump system installed in the guest house "Bērziņi" includes 12 pcs. TS 400 flat vacuum collectors, divided into 6 separate blocks to find a place to build roof windows in the middle of the roof of the house, thus obtaining additional light in the attic of the building.
The air is pumped out after the collectors have been installed, and so that we and the owner can be sure of the condition of the system, there are manometers inside that show the amount of vacuum in the collectors. This advantage is only for flat vacuum collectors, which are only manufactured industrially by the Thermo | Solar plant in Slovakia.
In our experience, in our first vacuum collector facilities (Tukums, Vecpiebalga), where TS400 collectors are installed, the vacuum has remained at the level initially set -1 atmosphere, which is an indicator that the work has been performed accurately and very carefully.
It is important to note that when designing the Solar Heat Pump System, only TS400 vacuum collectors can be used, which are especially suitable for collecting low temperatures during the winter and heating the ground circuit with them. It is forbidden to use conventional TS300 flat-panel solar collectors or similar products of competitors in such a system, because condensation forms in them due to temperature differences. Vacuum tube collectors should not be used either, as their operation in Latvian winter conditions is inefficient due to the snow that melts from the collectors much slower than from the TS400 flat vacuum collectors. Also, the fragility of thin pipes as a result of snow melting and re-freezing raises unnecessary concerns about their rupture.
Installing a ground circuit in such a solar heat pump system when re-installing a heat pump is significantly different from installing a simple ground heat pump. The ground collector of a solar heat pump system is based on a special patented scheme, which simply resembles a heated floor with several pipe loops, thus allowing much higher efficiency to be achieved. Two compressors ensure optimal power availability. If the operation of one compressor is enough, then the other compressor can rest, but if necessary, in very severe winter conditions, both compressors will turn on automatically at the same time.
The system is also connected to the Internet, so we will be able to perform accurate analysis and adjustment of the system operation at any time to achieve maximum effect. This is the first fully implemented solar heat pump system in Latvia, the work on which also taught us a lot, thus significantly increasing our competence. In order to be able to provide some efficiency indicators of the system, we have to wait for the first winter so that we can fine-tune the automation. However, already in summer mode, the system works great and the hot water is enough for both homeowners and visitors of the guest house, using only solar energy. In the event of colder weather, we will regularly monitor the indicators and make precise adjustments of the automation in order to achieve the greatest effect both in saving on heating costs and the owner's time.