Economic Feasibility of Solar Domestic Hot Water Systems in Syria and Armenia

S.Sh. Soulayman (Syria), N. Ananikyan, and G. Martoyan (Armenia)


Economic feasibility; Solar systems; Domestic hot water.


The main results of the first stage of Syrian – Armenian cooperation project on the feasibility of solar hot water systems (SHWS) in Syria and Armenia is presented in this work. Based on the analysis of the available technologies for solar water heating equipment, the most suitable solution of a DHW solar system for the Syrian and Armenian markets has been identified as a solar hot water heater, composed of flat plate solar collectors and a storage tank located horizontally slightly above the collectors, connected together by pipes where a thermosyphon circulation of water is established, in a closed loop between the solar collector absorber and an appropriate heat exchanger. This choice is based on the observation that this technology is much more reliable than pumped systems, due to the absence of pump and control that contribute heavily to the maintenance problems of DHW systems. It is clearly demonstrated that SHWS are feasible in both countries and should be widely distributed all over their territories. It was found that the cost of the useful energy yielded by a solar system with a relatively low efficiency (20% for example), installed in all over these countries and sold at 800 $/m2 , is 17.44 cent/kWh for a net discount rate of 0% and 23.2 cent/kWh for a net discount rate of 5%; such system is therefore already economically competitive against electric heaters and oil fired boilers with international prices of electricity and diesel oil, especially if incentives are granted by the public authorities.

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