Evacuated Tube Solar Collectors

Evacuated Tube
Solar Collectors

SunMaxx’s ThermoPower™ evacuated tube solar collectors are an industry-leading line of solar collectors that have been independently tested and certified to provide maximum performance and value.

  • SRCC OG-100 Certified For Guaranteed Performance

    All of our collectors are SRCC tested and OG-100 certified, meaning that you can buy with confidence in the fact that our products will deliver the performance you pay for.

  • Network Of Dedicated, Professional Installers

    We have trained and certified more than 3,000 independent solar hot water installers and service professionals, both across the United States around the world, ensuring that professional help for your SunMaxx Solar thermal system is never more than a phone call away.

  • Residential Domestic Hot Water & Radiant Systems

    Our evacuated tube collectors are great for a variety of residential solar heating applications, including: traditional hot water systems, radiant/space heating, and pool/spa heating.

  • Commercial & Municipal Solar Heating Systems

    Our evacuated tube solar collectors are in use in commercial, municipal, educational, and military solar hot water and heating systems of every shape and design, across the United States and around the world.

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Evacuated tube accessories

To quickly identify the necessary accessories for our evacuated tube collectors, feel free to use one of our convenient calculators provided below.

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Frequently Asked Questions:

Evacuated tubes, an essential component of SunMaxx Solar hot water systems, are designed to function optimally in all seasons, including the winter months. Here's a simplified explanation of how they work when temperatures drop:

Insulation: Each evacuated tube comprises a double-layered glass tube with a vacuum in between. This vacuum acts as an excellent insulator, reducing heat loss to nearly zero, thus maintaining the efficiency of the system even in freezing weather.

Absorption: The inner layer of the tube is coated with a special solar-absorbing material that captures sunlight and converts it into heat. This layer is designed to absorb the maximum amount of solar radiation, including during shorter winter days.

Heat Transfer: Inside each tube, a heat pipe transfers the generated heat to a manifold, which then circulates the hot water or heat transfer fluid to your storage tank. The evacuated tube design prevents the heat from escaping back into the cold atmosphere.

Orientation: Even when the sun is low in the winter sky, the cylindrical shape of evacuated tubes allows for optimal absorption of sunlight throughout the day.

In summary, the insulating vacuum, solar-absorbing coating, efficient heat transfer, and cylindrical design all contribute to the effective operation of evacuated tubes in the winter. While there may be less overall sunlight in the winter months, SunMaxx's evacuated tubes are engineered to make the most of available sunlight.

Evacuated Tube Solar Collectors FAQs1. What are Evacuated Tube Solar Collectors? A. Evacuated tube solar collectors are a type of solar thermal energy technology that consists of tubes made of glass that are sealed with a vacuum. The vacuum helps to reduce heat loss, making them more efficient than conventional solar collectors.2. How do Evacuated Tube Solar Collectors Work? A. Evacuated tube solar collectors absorb solar energy from the sun, and the tubes act as heat absorbers and insulators to store the heat. The heat is then transferred to a thermal storage system, such as a hot water tank, which can be used for a variety of applications.3. What are the Benefits of Evacuated Tube Solar Collectors? A. Evacuated tube solar collectors have numerous advantages, such as: - High efficiency, since they reduce heat loss due to their vacuum-sealed design; - Low maintenance requirements; - Can be used in a variety of applications; - Can be combined with other solar energy systems to increase efficiency.4. What are the Problems with Evacuated Tube Solar Collectors? A. Evacuated tube solar collectors may not be suitable for all climates, as they can be affected by extreme temperatures. Additionally, the tubes are fragile and may require an additional protective layer for outdoor installations, and the cost of installation can be quite high. Evacuated tube solar collectors have some drawbacks, including:
  1. Higher initial cost: These collectors are typically more expensive upfront compared to flat-plate collectors, due to their complex design and manufacturing process.
  2. Fragility: The glass tubes can be fragile, requiring careful handling during installation and maintenance to prevent breakage.
  3. Replacement cost: If a tube breaks or loses efficiency, it needs to be replaced, which can be more expensive than replacing a component of a flat-plate collector.
  4. Aesthetics: Some people may find the appearance of evacuated tube collectors less visually appealing than flat-plate collectors, as they have a more industrial look.
  5. Space requirement: Evacuated tube collectors may need more roof space compared to flat-plate collectors for the same energy output, due to their cylindrical shape.
  6. Installation and maintenance: They may require specialized skills for installation and maintenance, which could result in higher service costs.
Despite these drawbacks, evacuated tube solar collectors offer several benefits, such as high efficiency and better performance in cold climates. Weighing the pros and cons can help you decide if they are the right choice for your solar water heating needs.

The science of evacuated tubes. Short introduction on how they work.

Part 2 of this webinar series.

Quick video on how to replace your evacuated tube heat pipes (replace or to remove if you have issues with producing too much heat!) .

AVAILABLE NOW

VHP Evacuated Tube Collectors

Discover the remarkable efficiency and cost-effectiveness of Evacuated Tube Solar Collectors, especially in colder climates. While other solar collector designs may struggle with reduced performance and freeze-related issues, our Evacuated Tube Collectors excel with over 70% efficiency even in sub-zero conditions. Enjoy consistently hot water, regardless of the chilly weather, thanks to the superior freeze protection offered by this innovative design.

  • Suitable for industrial & process heating
  • Certified for federal solar tax credits
  • Modular & easy to install
Model

ThermoPower™-VHP20

ThermoPower™-VHP30

Dimensions (in)

70.2" x 79"

102.9" x 79"

Gross Collector Area (ft2)

37.4 ft2

56.4 ft2

Net Aperture Area (ft2)

21.4 ft2

32.1 ft2

Weight (lbs)

170

252

Flow Rate (GPM)

0.56

0.84

# of Tubes

20

30

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AVAILABLE NOW

VDF Evacuated Tube Collectors

SunMaxx Evacuated Tube Solar Collectors showcase a sleek design, efficiently catering to various hot water needs across diverse climates and locations. Perfect for those with an eye for design, the SunMaxx VDF30 is a versatile choice for residential, commercial, industrial, and municipal applications. Whether it's domestic hot water, radiant heating, or pool and hot tub heating, our aesthetically pleasing solar collectors are the ideal solution for daily use.

  • Mount flush or vertical
  • Glass tubes & manifold pre-assembled
  • Certified for federal solar tax credits
Model

ThermoPower™-VDF20

ThermoPower™-VDF30

Dimensions (in)

60" x 64.7"

87.4" x 64.7"

Gross Collector Area (ft2)

23.78 ft2

35.84 ft2

Net Aperture Area (ft2)

19.26 ft2

28.84 ft2

Weight (lbs)

112

168

Flow Rate (GPM)

0.4

0.6

# of Tubes

20

30

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AVAILABLE NOW

VTS Evacuated Tube Collectors

Experience the versatility of our complete solar hot water kits, suitable for both commercial and residential applications across all climate zones. These all-inclusive, ready-to-install packages come with high-efficiency solar collectors and integrated water storage tanks, offering an ideal combination of simplicity and affordability. Embrace an adaptable and cost-effective solution for your solar hot water needs, regardless of your location or climate.

Our DIY residential solar hot water systems are complete, ready-to-install packages that will provide affordable and efficient solar hot water in regions where cold weather isn't often seen. Each system includes a high-efficiency solar collector and integrated water storage tank for an effective combination of simplicity and affordability.

  • No moving electric motors
  • Certified for federal solar tax credits
  • Easy to install as DIY solar hot water system
Model

ThermoPower™-VTS15HP

ThermoPower™-VTS30HP

Dimensions (in)

60" x 90"

109" x 90"

Gross Collector Area (ft2)

24.5 ft2

47.9 ft2

Capacity (G)

40

79

Weight (lbs)

143

265

Flow Rate (GPM)

0.3

0.6

# of Tubes

15

30

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Evacuated Tube
Solar Collectors

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Evacuated Tube Solar Collector Pros and Cons

Evacuated tube solar collectors are a popular choice for residential and commercial solar water heating applications. They consist of a series of vacuum-sealed glass tubes with a solar absorber inside. Here, we discuss the main pros and cons of evacuated tube solar collectors to help you make an informed decision.

Pros:

  1. High efficiency: Evacuated tube solar collectors are highly efficient due to their vacuum-sealed design, which minimizes heat loss. This enables them to convert a higher percentage of sunlight into heat energy compared to other solar collectors, like flat-plate collectors.
  2. Performance in cold climates: The vacuum insulation also makes these collectors well-suited for colder climates, as they can retain heat more effectively and maintain their efficiency even during low temperatures.
  3. Better performance on cloudy days: Evacuated tube collectors can capture both direct and diffuse sunlight, allowing them to perform better on cloudy or overcast days compared to flat-plate collectors.
  4. Versatility: These collectors can be installed at various angles, making them suitable for a wide range of roof types and orientations.
  5. Durability: Evacuated tube collectors are generally more durable and less prone to leaks or corrosion than flat-plate collectors, as they don’t rely on seals that can degrade over time.

Cons:

  1. Higher initial cost: Evacuated tube collectors typically have a higher initial cost compared to flat-plate collectors due to their more complex design and manufacturing process.
  2. Installation and maintenance: These collectors are more fragile than flat-plate collectors, which means they require careful handling during installation and maintenance to prevent breakage.
  3. Replacement cost: If a tube breaks or becomes less efficient over time, it needs to be replaced, which can be more expensive than replacing a component of a flat-plate collector.
  4. Aesthetics: Some people may find the appearance of evacuated tube collectors less visually appealing than flat-plate collectors, as they have a more industrial look.
  5. Larger space requirement: Due to their cylindrical shape, evacuated tube collectors may require more space on the roof compared to flat-plate collectors for the same energy output.

In summary, evacuated tube solar collectors offer several advantages, such as high efficiency, better performance in cold climates, and durability. However, they also come with downsides, including higher initial cost, increased fragility, and larger space requirements. Consider these factors when deciding if evacuated tube solar collectors are the right choice for your solar water heating needs.