(Music playing) (Narrator) Over 50 percent of the greenhouse gas emissions you produce in your home are generated by heating, air conditioning and hot water. In other words keeping your home warm in winter, cool in summer with nice hot water on tap is emitting 2.5 to 5 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions each year. It also contributes a hefty amount to your electricity bill, between 50 to 60 percent. CSIRO has invented a new solar air conditioning system for Australian homes. This technology solution will reduce Australia’s emissions, reduce your energy bills and reduce our demand for electricity and gas. If every home in Australia installed our solar cooling technology it would be the equivalent of saving 15 mega tonnes of CO2 or taking 3.5 million cars off the road. CSIRO’s solar air conditioning is an innovative three in one technology that provides hot water, cooling and heating.
It uses only a fraction of the electricity of current systems and halves greenhouse gas emissions. The process begins with a typical solar hot water system. Water is heated by solar panels and stored in the hot water tank. This solar hot water can then be used throughout the home, reducing the need for gas or electricity. A portion of the hot water is diverted into CSIRO’s new solar air conditioning unit, which is divided into two compartments. The hot water enters a heat exchanger in the first compartment of the unit.
Similar to a car radiator the heat exchanger uses the hot water to heat outside air that has been drawn into the first compartment through the vent. At the same time outside air is also being drawn into the second compartment into a desiccant wheel. The desiccant wheel is the most critical part of the system. It is used to dry out the air before it goes into the house. Slowly turning the desiccant material in the wheel continuously absorbs moisture in the second compartment and then the absorbent material dries out in the first compartment. The desiccant material is dried out using the hot dry air generated by the heat exchanger. This air is then exhausted outside the home. The dry air from the desiccant wheel flows through an indirect evaporative cooler which creates a stream of cool dry air. This cool dry air is then fed into the home in order to cool down the rooms. In winter the solar heated air can be used directly to warm the house. CSIRO’s solar cooling system is a low emissions alternative to conventional air conditioning and gas or electric powered heating, providing more comfortable homes, reduced energy bills and a cooler planet.