What if the sun could contribute a lot more to our heating needs?
A square meter of sunlight is equivalent to a 1000 Watt heater. This free heat can enter a building through its windows, but it only enters the building when the sun rays hit these windows which depends on the orientation of the windows and the position of the sun.
In winter the windows facing south can harvest the most solar heating. Windows facing east and west get a lot less and windows facing north hardly get any.
With Collective Solar Heating all windows could get sunlight just about the whole day.
In this way the contribution of the sun in our heating needs could be greatly enhanced. Calculations need to be made but my current estimate is that the contribution of the sun could, on average, double.
As you may have seen by now in the video, the concept is to have an array of heliostats on the roof ridges of the buildings. The heliostats can all be positioned independently so each of them can direct the heat of the sun to a window of choice. That window of choice may vary during the day.
All the heliostats connect to an application in the cloud to get instructions what position to take for how long. With these instructions and some basic intelligence the heliostat can control its movements by itself for a certain period of time.
The cloud application would know the position of all the heliostats, the position of the sun, the position of the windows and the heat demand per building.
Each thermostat in the buildings would communicate their heat demand with the cloud application to negotiate the contribution of the sun in the heating of that building. If the Collective Solar Heating system cannot provide enough power, then the conventional heating systems will be started.
What about summer?
In the summer the need for heating is just about zero. How could the Collective Solar Heating system be of use in this period of of the year?
If there is no need for heating the heliostats can be used to enhance the electricity generating power of PV or PVT panels. It would even make it feasible to have PV of PVT panels on north facing surfaces.
What do you think?
Let me know in the comments!