Solar Water Heater Project L1

Solar Heating Project
First due date: On or before Wednesday February 26th (No exceptions) (Due
date for written report will follow)
One to two people per project
Maximum dimensions: It cannot exceed 60 centimeters in EVERY dimension
(including diagonal)
Total amount of water: one-half gallon
Only one energy transfer allowed (sunlight ---> heat)
Worth: 25 points for the project
20 points for the lab report
This project is designed to show your understanding of the principles of solar
energy as a renewable resource. You are to build a solar collector that will be
placed outside on the tennis courts (best sport ever) during a sunny day in
February in order to gain energy from the sun. Materials are to be collected and
supplied by the members of the group (yes, Shonnah—by you!).
You are allowed only one energy exchange, sunlight to heat. You may not have
the energy of the sun take on any other form in between, such as solar cells,
mechanical energy, or any chemical reaction.
You may use any materials you choose as long as they are not designed primarily
as a solar collector. Reflecting light or magnifying light is acceptable since there
is no exchange of energy into another form. You may heat up another substance
that will transfer its heat to the water in the system.
You will be allowed exactly one-half gallon of water in your system. You must
use all the water and it must be filled in class on the day the projects go outside.
The water must be directly poured into your projects using the container from the
class. You have a maximum of five minutes to fill up your project. There must be
a storage space for the water that can be easily accessible to measure the
temperature at the end of the day, such as a lid that a thermometer can be dipped
into after it is removed. Allow for the expansion of the water since it will most
likely FREEZE overnight.
Make sure your project is heavy enough so it DOES NOT TIP OVER or parts
blow away! It may get very windy!
Your last name must be in large writing in a very visible place on your heater.
Project scores will be determined in comparison to all the other students in your
level based on the temperature measured by a thermometer on the day of the trial.
All the projects must be tested on the same day so all projects must be handed in
either before or on the due date. Projects cannot be accepted after this date for any
reason. The top three projects will be awarded extra points: +5 for first, +3 for
second, +1 for third.
Since you are building this heater (and not someone else) you must be able to
orally explain in detail how the project was constructed and why. Failure to do so
will result in a 5-point reduction in your grade.
Lab Report - must be typed and double spaced
The report must include the following:
Title: Summarize this project in a phrase
Introduction: (DUE 2/24)
Write a one paragraph description about solar heating and its place in our society
from research done by you in the library, on the Internet, or your text book.
Purpose/objective/hypothesis: (DUE 2/24)
Explain the logic behind the design you chose in terms of the several principles of
designing an effective solar collector. Create a hypothesis predicting the increase
in temperature of the water within ten degrees Celsius compared to the control.
The control will be an ordinary bucket of water. This hypothesis should be based
on your design principles. Discuss any problems that you will need to overcome
or foresee occurring in the running of this experiment and how will you overcome
them in your design.
Materials (DUE 2/24):
List all materials used in the assembly of this project. Be precise in the amounts
and dimensions of the materials used so that someone could take this list and
assemble you device themselves.
Procedure for assembly DUE (2/24):
Numerically list the steps for assembling this device as if it were an instruction
manual. Be sure to include a drawing of your device when it is completed. Also
describe the alignment you propose to use when it is set up outside.
Data (TBD):
List your temperature result in Celsius and the net difference between the control
and your data.
Conclusions (TBD):
Explain why your device worked as expected or did not. You will consult the
various components necessary for an effective solar heater that we will discuss in
class. Be sure to include any problems encountered and any unexpected surprises
that may have occurred during the running of the experiment. Make sure you
restate your hypothesis and discuss your results explaining why it was correct or
References (TBD):
Be sure to include the source of any information you received throughout the
construction and implementation of your device such as the names of individuals,
books, periodicals, Internet, etc. that you consulted.