California Solar Thermal, Inc. provides solutions for all high-demand hot water users.  From textiles and commercial laundry to dairy farms, breweries and all multi-occupant housing (i.e. apartment buildings, condominium associations, hotels, dormitories, barracks, etc), solar thermal systems can deliver hot water to meet or contribute to your constant hot water requirements.

Collector_FieldCalifornia Solar Thermal has evaluated the many different commercial solar thermal products and solutions currently available in the global market. We have chosen to generally offer closed-loop antifreeze systems for commercial applications. They are the most commonly used worldwide in the commercial market and will achieve the highest solar fraction. The main system components include evacuated tube or flat plate collectors, solar storage tanks, heat exchangers, controllers, and circulating pumps. They use a pressurized closed loop of heattransfer fluid, a non-toxic polypropyleneLow_income_Collector glycol solution, which is pumped through the collectors, exchanging heat with the potable water in an internal or external heat exchanger. An existing water heating tank or a solar storage tank can be used as storage, and the tank can be located a significant distance away from the collectors. Being a pressurized closed loop of fluid, an expansion tank, fill & drain valves, a safety relief valve, and temperature and pressure gauges are also part of this type of system. The circulating pump needed for the pressurized loop is relatively small and consumes minimal amounts of electricity.


Chiller_MechThe solar pump is operated by an automated differential controller and is turned on when the collectors are a certain number of degrees warmer than the storage tank. The controller may also control a second pump to move the potable water from the existing tank through an external heat exchanger, although the heat exchanger may be located inside the solar storage tank and a second pump will not be necessary.  Our advanced controllers also have a heat quantity measurement feature, allowing you to monitor and track the solar thermal system’s performance.  They also have the ability to monitor temperatures and pressures within the solar system so we can remotely monitor the system and ensure consistent performance.

Yazaki_ChillerFor commercial installations, a turn-key option is not available at this time. The complexity of commercial installations and the options available based on site requirements vary greatly. There are currently no commercial “system” certifications offered by the SRCC so it also becomes harder to predict anticipated system performance or savings. We have evaluated and tested different components and formed direct relationships with manufacturers of each commercial system component. Our complete commercial solar water heating systems will continue to deliver in quality and performance for the long life of the system. We use a variety of commercial solar thermal design software to predict commercial system performance and anticipated savings.

We also offer unique solutions for commercial applications, both retrofit and new construction; solar thermal technology can be used for:

  • Domestic Water Heating
  • Pools & Spas
  • Space Heating – Forced Air & Hydronic Heating
  • Cooling – Absorption & Adsorption Chillers
  • Industrial Process Heat

Chiller_Room2Combination systems can achieve high overall efficiency and achieve a perfect balance using solar thermal technology; heat can be used for cooling in the summer and heating in the winter. Existing water heating, space heating or cooling can be integrated with and utilized. Existing space heating systems that can be integrated with solar thermal include hydronic baseboard radiator, radiant floor heating, and forced air systems. Only existing absorption chillers can be used, but we also offer high efficiency absorption and adsorption chillers to meet your building’s needs. New construction can greatly benefit from integrating solar thermal technology in the early parts of the design stages for permit expedition and waived fees in some cities. Design is a large factor in attaining overall building and system efficiency, which can be up to 85%. With California’s 2008 Building Energy Efficiency Standards now in effect, solar thermal systems will get your building well above the bar. Buildings requiring LEED certification will also greatly benefit from the use of a solar thermal system.