Transpired Solar Collector

Transpired Solar Collectors help to improve the energy efficiency and the environmental performance of a building by converting solar energy into heat energy and preheating the ventilation air to a building. This preheated air can help to reduce the fuel required to heat a building by up to 50%.

They are very effective as part of a decarbonisation or EPC improvement programme for commercial property with a large building envelope.

The Transpired Solar Collector system has been used in North America and Canada for over 20 years and has proven to have the shortest payback of any renewable technology of between 3 to 7 years. These short payback periods are achievable through a highly thermal efficient system coupled with the low cost of the Transpired Solar Collector, which is in effect a single sheet of perforated steel.

As part of the development team working with TATA Steel, Kimpton have designed and installed a number of these systems on different types of building and are excellently placed to offer you advice on how this system can be used to improve the energy efficiency of your building.

Our Transpired Solar Collector services at a glance:

  • New Build or Retrofit Installation
  • Fully scalable solutions
  • Site surveys and full feasibility studies
  • Low Carbon Technology
  • Significant reductions in your Carbon Footprint
  • Reduced fossil fuel bills


A transpired solar collector (TSC) uses the power of solar radiation to pre-heat the air for a building’s heating system. The technology is not new but was first developed over 20 years ago and used in the Canadian and US markets.

CA GroupTata Steel and Kimpton jointly designed and developed one of the first TSC systems to be installed in the UK, at the Sustainable Building Envelope Centre, within Tata Steel’s site in Shotton, North Wales.


Fitted to the south-facing aspect or roof of a building, the system works by the pre-finished perforated steel skin absorbing solar energy. As the air passes through these perforations, it draws heat from the edges and then rises within the cavity or plenum.

This heated air is then delivered directly to the building via vents, or into the HVAC system for additional heating and subsequently used to warm the space inside.

It’s this pre-heating that delivers the potentially huge efficiency savings, as the level of power input required to get the air to a usable temperature is greatly reduced, over a conventional cold air intake.

The pre-finished perforated steel is available in a wide range of specially developed colour shades, designed to enhance the absorbance of the material.

The cladding is as much as 80% efficient and on cold sunny days, can deliver up to 50% reduction in the overall energy consumption used for heating. On average, a square metre of installed TSC can produce 300-500 kWh per year.

The installed cost per kWh produced can be up to seven times lower than Solar PV.

How does a Transpired Solar Collector work


1. Long Life

They have no moving parts, other than the fans for the HVAC system, so have a very long life – Guaranteed for 25 years and then fully recyclable.

2. Significant Energy saving

They will deliver significant energy saving and massive CO2 reduction over their whole life.

3. Fast payback

With a new installation, this can be between 1-3 years and for retro-fitting, between 5-9 years – this beats almost any other renewable technology.

4. Low maintenance

With no moving parts for the TSC, there is minimal maintenance, other than conventional cleaning.

5. Simple installation

They can be fitted to almost any large scale industrial building with a south-facing aspect or roof and can be retrofitted to existing buildings as well as new builds.

Case Studies

Tata Steel Transpired Solar Collector
  • Industry/Technology

Transpired Solar Collector TATA Steel

The Client The SBEC (Sustainable Building Envelope Centre) in Deeside is a pioneering partnership between the Low Carbon Research Institute, TATA Steel and the Welsh

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