Solar Energy powered Air Conditioner: Mechanical Engineering Project
With Kerala being one of the most humid places on planet earth; Summer, is the time when you wished you had an Air Conditioner. But, you would rather detest the idea because of the staggering electricity bills you would get once you start using the AC. And it would be a miracle if you could use an AC without paying those hefty electricity bills. In that case, it seems a miracle has just happened!
How about utilizing the free energy of the sun to power up your AC?
The hottest months usually, happens to be also the sunniest. You can use the scorching summer heat to actually remove the heat from your room with the help Photovoltaics (PVs) to power your AC. Photovoltaics are collection of cells which have photovoltaic material that makes use solar radiation to develop direct current electricity.
For achieving the best performance the PVs are connected to a solar tracker so as to align themselves towards the sun to receive the maximum amount of solar radiation. The use of a solar tracker would improve the performance of the PVs by whopping 50% in summer.
The use of Concentrated Solar power systems (CSP ) further enhances the utilization of solar power by making use of mirrors to concentrate solar energy onto a photovoltaic cell. Since CSP systems are bigger in construction and expensive they are seldom used to generate power for an air conditioner.
A typical air conditioner consists of the following
1) Condensing coil
2) Expansion valve
3) Evaporator Coil
Once, the direct current developed by the PVs is fed to the Air Condition unit, you have an Air Conditioner which works on Solar Panels and you can be free from the tension of electricity bills draining your pockets.
Excess power if developed can be used to power other electrical appliance or sold back to a power grid! Ultimately the success of the system would depend upon the cost effectiveness.
Sachin is a B-TECH graduate in Mechanical Engineering from a reputed Engineering college. Currently, he is working in the sheet metal industry as a designer. Additionally, he has interested in Product Design, Animation, and Project design. He also likes to write articles related to the mechanical engineering field and tries to motivate other mechanical engineering students by his innovative project ideas, design, models and videos.