Passive Cooling

From Antivist


In its simplest form, the solar chimney consists of a black-painted chimney. During the day solar energy heats the chimney and the air within it, creating an updraft of air in the chimney. The suction created at the chimney's base can be used to ventilate and cool the building below. In most parts of the world it is easier to harness wind power for such ventilation, but on hot windless days such a chimney can provide ventilation where otherwise there would be none.

There are however a number of solar chimney variations. The basic design elements of a solar chimney are:

  • The solar collector area: This can be located in the top part of the chimney or can include the entire shaft. The orientation, type of glazing, insulation and thermal properties of this element are crucial for harnessing, retaining and utilizing solar gains
  • The main ventilation shaft: The location, height, cross section and the thermal properties of this structure are also very important.
  • The inlet and outlet air apertures: The size, location as well as aerodynamic aspects of these elements are also significant.
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