Thermoplastic parts manufacturer Plastech Inc. wanted solar technology to eliminate the C$6,000 annual natural gas energy costs of heating its shipping area, but without the expense of altering its ivory color building's aesthetic exteriors or painting it a darker, more absorptive color to enhance solar efficiency.
Light colors, such as white or ivory, are rarely recommended for most solar collector absorbers. However recently-developed solar technology using perforated glazing on wall-mounted solar air heaters made solar possible without bearing dark paint costs or altering the 26,000-square-foot building's exterior aesthetics. The solar air heater appears more like a wall of windows than a solar collector for Plastech (Sherbrooke, QB) a division of the MI Integration Group that supplies injection molded interior and sealing parts to the automotive industry.
Plastech's Lubi wall-mounted solar air heater manufactured by Enerconcept Technologies (Magog, QB) is the world's most efficient solar collector rated at an 80.7 efficiency by the Canadian Standards Association (CSA-International). On a black surface, the Lubi is 20% more efficient than any other wall-mounted solar glazing or metal collectors. On a white wall such as Plastech however, the Lubi is 58% more efficient than any other competitors.