Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Next Solar Project


I have been looking for my next solar project for a while. Most what I found have to deal with expensive solar panels and some sort of costly battery bank. Being I have been down that road before with my rain water solar pumping system I knew I didn't want to go down that path again anytime soon.  

 I found this Solar Still in Mother Earth News and thought why not. I can always use distilled water and have to buy several gallons every month so why not make my own.

In kinda my own words this is what I got from reading Mother Earth about the still,  

Distilled water is not just for drinking, and it’s always worth keeping a few gallons of it on hand. Clean water free of chemicals and minerals has a number of valuable uses:
• Always refill the lead-acid batteries used for solar energy systems or automobiles with distilled water
• Water delicate plants like orchids with distilled water; minerals and additives like fluoride or chlorine that are present in most tap water can harm plants
• Distilled water mixed with antifreeze is recommended for car radiators, as it’s less corrosive
• Steam irons become clogged with mineral deposits unless you use distilled water

The idea of using the sun’s heat to separate water from dissolved minerals has been around a long time. The well water in my area leaves mineral deposits that will build up over time and corrode or clog whatever it's used for in just a few short months.  
A solar still works like a salt evaporation pond, except that the water that invisibly evaporates is extracted from the air; the minerals and other impurities are left behind and discarded. As the hot, moisture-laden air rises up to the glass, water condenses out in the form of small droplets that cling to the glass. As these droplets get heavier, they roll down the glass to the collector tube at the bottom and then out to the jug.

With the well water issues and afraid to drink the rain water without boiling it due to the pesticides and herbicides sprayed in this area, this little project is what I am looking for to expand the resources for good clean drinking water.  

 Below is a picture of the I took from Mother Earth News






When I get finished with mine I will post pictures and also give a functionality report on rate of flow.












My next solar project will be a solar heater for the shop.

14 comments:

  1. I can't wait to hear your report on this system and see pictures.

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    1. Sandy, it should be done within this next week.

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  2. Hi, this will be a great addition to water security. I read Mother Earth News too. What issue and page did you find this info?

    tony

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    1. Tony it was in the Mother Earth News weekly email they send me. Here is the link to the project.
      http://www.motherearthnews.com/multimedia/image-gallery.aspx?id=2147507252&seq=0

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  3. Really cool - should be relative simple to make...? :)

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    1. Dani it is except for the glass cutting. I am not a glass cutter and already broke some trying to cut it to fit. I might need to break down and just buy a pre-cut piece.

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  4. wow thats cool im going to have to do that i buy gallons a month for my cpap

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    1. Thanks Eric, I think it would be great to use in one of those. I can't wait to see the flow rate this little thing puts out.

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  5. MDR - i can't wait to see what you come up with and then after you have played with it and used it, i can't wait to hear your ideas about should have done this or should have done that. we could really use this here...we run our well water through a filter and then run the filtered water through our berkey. however, even though we filter the well water, it is still mineral-ly for bathing, washing clothes, dishes, etc. i look forward to your future post on what you do and how you did it. thanks buddy!

    your friend,
    kymber

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    1. Kymber, I have missed your great comments. I will surely let you know what the outcome is on this little project.

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