Essentials of a Solar Greenhouse

Essentials of a Solar Greenhouse

Plant breeding and plant production is a very productive hobby and livelihood. It is a good way to earn some living by producing high-value crops.

It is also a good way of contributing to the environment. The best way to sustain this endeavor is to get a solar greenhouse. Read on to learn the basics of the solar greenhouse.

What Is a Solar Greenhouse?

The very purpose of any greenhouse is to collect solar energy whenever the sun shining high. However, solar greenhouses serve a more specific purpose.

It is able to do more than collect solar energy. The solar greenhouse is able to store heat that can be used during nighttime, cloudy days or the cold season.

It provides adequate heat that the plants will need for their growth even during the night time or the cold seasons.

The good thing about solar greenhouses is that there are choices to choose from and to suit the needs of the owner.

They can stand alone. This is very ideal for big production greenhouses. The freestanding ones are ideal for commercial production. These are used to produce ornamentals or vegetables. They have two primary designs, the shed type, and the Quonset type.

The shed-type has a long axis running from the east to the west. It has a south-facing wall glazed to collect the maximum amount of energy from the sun.

The north-facing wall, on the other hand, is very much insulated to avoid heat loss. These features are what contrast a solar greenhouse from the ordinary ones.

The Quonset type can sometimes look like an underground pit. This is a low-cost greenhouse. It has a Quonset-shaped frame and looks like a tunnel. It has a layer or two of plastic film. This can save as much as 40% of the heating fuel.

They can also be merely attached to the greenhouses, very ideal for backyard use. The attached solar greenhouses are structures that form some sort of a room protruding from a house. This is a good space for transplants or herbs.

Passive or Active

The solar greenhouse is classified into two. It can be the passive solar greenhouse or the active. These two make use of different resources but still serve the same purpose.

The Passive Solar Greenhouse

In some places, where colder seasons tend to endure longer, there may be a need to resort to the passive solar greenhouse, using gas or electric heating system. This is the only way to protect the plants from getting too much cold.

This is very ideal for growers as it can still give way to so much productivity despite the conditions. The use of heating systems for greenhouses to be cost-effective is best utilized if there are high-value crops to be produced.

The Active Solar Greenhouse

The active solar greenhouse makes use of supplemental energy. It transfers the solar heated air from the storage area to the other parts of the greenhouse.

Designing a Solar Greenhouse

Most would claim that managing and maintaining an ordinary greenhouse does not differ much with the solar greenhouse. However, there are a number of ways that they differ. These are significant distinctions.

Solar greenhouses, unlike the ordinary ones, have oriented glazing to get the utmost solar heat, even during winter. Its materials are designed to minimize loss of heat.

It uses heat-storing materials. It also has insulation especially useful when there is no sunlight. The solar greenhouse also depends heavily on natural ventilation for cooling during summer.

Solar Heat Storage

This is one main feature in designing a solar greenhouse. To remain warm even during cool nights, there must be a sufficient amount of solar heat stored. One common method used to store this energy is to put rocks or concrete directly receiving the sunlight to absorb the heat.

Cinder block walls at the north side of a greenhouse are also used as good heat storage. Dark-colored ceramic floorings can also be used to store the heat.

Any wall or flooring not used for heat absorption is supposed to be colored light. This should be designed to reflect the heat and light and distribute it to the plants.

The management of a greenhouse can also determine the amount of heat stored. A greenhouse that is full of plants and structures can store heat easier compared to an empty one.

Composts can also complement the heat storage goal as they help produce carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Furthermore, the microorganisms in the compost also contribute to the increase in plant production.

Some would rely on any structure that would resemble a greenhouse to accommodate the plants. However, to be efficient and cost-effective, aim for the optimum setting in your solar greenhouse.

The Risks Of Solar Energy

When people talk about solar energy, all they really talk about is how much this alternative form of energy source is a great source for power and electricity, and how this source of energy can help you save a lot on your utility bills.

The Risks Of Solar Energy

However, there are certain things and aspects about solar energy that should be discussed with people, especially since solar energy is now being integrated with constructing modern-day houses and structures, and are even now becoming a viable source for power and electricity.

One of those things that should be discussed involves the risk of using solar energy. This article will try to present to you some facts and information about the risks involved in using solar energy.

Before we can discuss more about different risks, let us first discuss what solar energy is, and how it is produced in order to understand its different risks.

Known Dangers of Solar Energy

For those of you who don’t know, solar energy is actually produced from a process that occurs within the sun known as nuclear fusion.

Nuclear fusion is actually the very same process that is involved in nuclear power plants, and actually employs the same basic nuclear physics laws that apply to atomic bombs. This is definitely a major cause for alarm for most people.

Aside from that, add the fact that the main energy source for solar energy is actually hydrogen, which is a form of gas that is highly explosive, and that is definitely something that you should be aware of.

Hydrogen is a tremendously destructive component that can be found in H-bombs, and also produces dangerous fallout for those exposed.

These known dangers of solar energy may sound very threatening, but these are not the only things that you should be worried about, for solar energy could also have other not so well-known dangers that could pose a risk to your health.

Solar Energy Radiation

Right now, we are all actually being subjected to the sun’s background radiation, which could be dangerous if exposure to it exceeded a certain level. There is really nothing we can do to prevent being exposed to such background radiation other than to simply avoid sun exposure.

However, if your home uses solar energy to power up your house, you might find it more difficult to do. Since solar energy technology harnesses the power of the sun by concentrating the sunlight and using its energy to light up your home’s light bulb, you could very well be irradiating your entire home, something which could cause skin cancer later on.

Blindness from Solar Energy

Another danger that could stem from using solar energy to power up your different gadgets and electronics at home is that it could cause blindness if you were to expose your eyes to too much radiation from them, just like staring directly at the sun for too long.

Solar Energy Fire Hazards

Since most solar collectors basically concentrate the sunlight that they are able to collect from the sun, it can be a fire hazard, especially since fire can very easily start if there were very high concentrations and levels of solar energy.

These high and dangerous levels of solar concentrations could easily ignite combustible materials, making it a possible hire hazard on any home.

These are just some of the risks that solar energy could pose to you, so make sure that you do some research first before deciding on whether you want to get and use solar energy technology for your home or not.