Analysis of Solar Sites: Service Available

In the process of my search for an appropriate building site for my passive (and active) solar house, I purchased and learned to use a device known as the Solar Pathfinder. This is a device that was originally designed to be used manually, and trace the shadow patterns reflected on a spherical dome, onto a specially prepared paper grid mounted below that semi-transparent dome. The grids were specific to a particular latitude, and by measurement from the grid tracing the fraction of available solar radiation falling on the site could be calculated on a monthly basis for the entire calendar year.

The new version of the device uses a digital picture of the reflective pattern, which is uploaded to special software, calibrated, and the shadow patterns traced. The software then uses the latitude, and the shading pattern to generate a site solar efficiency report.

This device was crucial in my site selection. Of course, one could only consider sites with no trees, houses, etc within 500 meters to the south, but that limits the choices available rather severely. This analysis let me analyse various sites that had other locational benefits, and find whether the solar input was still sufficiently high to give me the energy input I wanted for my project.

Since I have this device, and have considerable experience in its use, as well as experience in “eyeball” appraisal of sites, I am making myself available for consultation for anyone considering solar hot water or photovoltaic panels, as well as passive solar heating for a house or other building projects in Southwest Ontario.

My basic consultation fee is $200, for a single site visit and if additional visits and reports are necessary, $75.00/hr. I can be reached at (519)719-0342 or via the mail service below.


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