Solar heating is heating with solar heat. "Change oil to local workplaces," writes the European Solar Thermal Industry Federation ESTIF. Europe's solar heating has doubled in three years. Solar heating is used for building heating and for heating tap water.
A solar collector receives sun rays. The heat is transported from solar panels using a suitable medium, often water. Water that is heated by the sun circulates through solar panels. The heat is transferred directly or via a heat exchanger to a heating system. The excess heat is stored in hot water in tanks. Solar heat is also used in solar ovens and heat pumps. The target in EU white paper is 100 million m² of solar collectors in 2010. The amount in 2006 was 19 million m². The number of solar panels must therefore increase very sharply during the end of the twentieth century in order for this goal to be met.
Solar heating in the world
Solar heating is a fast-growing international business. The People's Republic of China is a world leader. The European Union, Turkey, Japan and Israel are also leaders in development. Solar heating is renewable energy, which reduces carbon dioxide emissions, reduces dependence on fossil fuels, improves urban air, creates local jobs, develops local economies, is well-known and reliable technology and immediately usable anywhere in the world.
Solar heating in Europe
Solar heating is already heating up 10 million European homes. About 90% of the European solar heating market today is in the small housing sector. Usage is growing rapidly. Due to economies of scale, the cost of installing solar heating decreases as more and more people use the technology.  Austria is seen as a pioneering country, where solar heating is already used in 15% of single-family houses. The growth potential is enormous. In 2005, solar heating replaced 34,000 trucks of oil in EU countries: 686,000 tonnes of oil. ESTIF's minimum target for 2020 is to save 278,000 trucks of oil in the EU, it has also set an ambitious target of 982,000 saved trucks of oil by 2020. The minimum target corresponds to 199 kW / 1,000 inhabitants and the ambitious target of 700 kW / 1,000 inhabitants  The technology provides work for half a million people in Europe within 15 years.
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