Indian Railways has long been on the drive to reduce their carbon footprint investing in conventional solar PV technologies for their railway platforms. Indian railways has running rooms at every station where the guards, TT, loco pilots rest and refresh between their trips. These buildings have both electricity and hot water requirements. Indian Railways needed an innovative solution that can give them a complete solution for electricity and hot water requirements. Running rooms at Nampally had a requirement of 5kW and 1,000LPD of hot water and only had 400 sq. ft of roof to space. Meeting the requirement of 5kW & 1,000LPD with in 400 sq. ft is impossible with any existing technologies.
Birds Eye Energy’s innovative, patented technology of ‘Duplex Solar panels’ were the solution that would solve this problem by delivering 5kW and 1,000LPD hot water with in 400 sq. ft space. Below is the detailed project report.
Challenges for roof top solar system for running rooms:
■ Roof top space shortage: Only 400 sq. ft of roof top area was available to deliver 5kW and 1000LPD; this is impossible with ordinary PV and solar hot water technologies.
■ Durability issues with ordinary hot water systems: In the past Indian Railways has opted for hot water systems such as ETC or FPC, but both these systems fail and start leaking within a few years and eventually fall into dis-use.
■ Frequent replacements: Water heaters have a short life time 5 – 10 years and Indian Railways has to go through the tedious administrative and technical procedure to install a new system frequently.
■ Quest for innovation: Indian Railways has long been on the quest to reduce their carbon footprint and have been looking for innovative technologies to promote; but most technologies that exist in the market are outdated technologies.
Birds Eye Energy Technologies innovative solution:
First of its kind in India:
- • Hot water and electricity from a single panel
- • Most efficient solar panel in India: 37%
- • Mono crystalline cells
- • Panel electric output: 330W
- • Panel hot water output: 100LPD
- • Temperature: 50 to 65 deg Celsius
- • Dimensions: 2017mm X 1032mm X 62mm
- • Dry weight of the panel: 40kg
- • Fluid volume inside the panel: 3.75L
- • Maximum design pressure: 8 bar (116psi)
Birds Eye Energy has developed a unique ‘Duplex’ solar panel. Our ‘Duplex’ panel is the same size as a standard panel (1m X 2m), and has two layers; the top layer of the panel produces DC power (330W) and the bottom layer generates hot water (100LPD). This makes the Birds Eye Energy’s Duplex panel the most efficient solar panel in India, with an overall efficiency of upto 40%!
‘Duplex’ solar panel is a patented product developed by Birds Eye Energy in collaboration with IIT Madras.
Benefits of duplex panels over ordinary PV and hot water panels:
|Benefit over conventional PV system||Ordinary PV panels||Birds Eye Energy 'Duplex' panels|
|Type of solar cells||Poly crystalline||Mono-PERC (long lasting with lower degradation)|
|Operation of solar cells||High operating temperature||Increased life time|
|Benefit over conventional hot water panels||Ordinary hot water panels||Birds Eye Energy 'Duplex' panels|
|Durality||Glass tubes are easily breakable & not covered under warranty||Metal heat recovery system|
|Design life time||10 years||20 years|
|Warranty period||5 years||20 years|
|Leakages issues||Thin tubes (0.3mm)||2x thicker flow passages|
|Pressure rating||3 to 5 bar||8 bar (European standard)|
|Scaling and clogging||Scaling issues||Reduces scaling problem by 50%|
Within 400 sq. ft of space, 15 Birds Eye Energy ‘Duplex’ panels were installed. With each panel supplying 330W of power, the 15 panels combined, deliver the 5kW of power. With each ‘Duplex’ panel capable of delivering 100L of hot water, the total capacity of the system is 1500LPD. As per the requirement only a 1,000L system was installed, giving the customer a flexibility of increasing the hot water capacity with minimal changes to the system.
The system consists of 2 strings; first string of 7 panels and second string of 8 panels. Both these strings were connected in parallel to a Delta inverter rated for 5kW.
The first string of 7 panels are connected to a 500L tank which supplies hot water to the kitchen. The second string of 8 panels are connected to another 500L tank which supplies hot water to the bathrooms.
Drain valves and unions are provided at appropriate locations to drain the system and perform maintenance as needed.
How our patented Birds Eye Energy “Duplex” panels were able to meet all challenges of the project:
■ Roof top space shortage issue solved by duplex panels: 15 duplex panels take up only 400 sq. ft of space to install. With each panel capable of delivering 330W and 100 LPD of hot water, the requirement of 5kW and 1,000LPD hot water was met using merely 400 sq. ft
■ Durability issues solved by robust engineering of duplex panels: Birds Eye Energy duplex panels are built with 2X thicker flow passages than ordinary hot water panels; are tested to withstand 8 bar pressure and are designed to last 25 years. The panels also come with 20 year warranty.
■ Frequent replacement issue solved due to long life time of Duplex panels: Birds Eye Energy’s duplex panels are designed to have a long life of 25 years; eliminating the need for frequent replacements.
■ Quest for innovation: Indian Railways has long been on the quest to reduce their carbon footprint and have been looking for innovative technologies to promote; but most technologies that exist in the market are outdated technologies. Birds Eye Energy is a company a strong focus on R&D and our first product ‘Duplex’ panel is based on patented technology indigenously developed in collaboration with IIT Madras and CSIR