Sunday, July 14, 2024

How Does A Solar Energy System Work

How Does Solar Energy Affect Theenvironment

How do solar panels work? – Richard Komp

The last thing youll want to know is how solar energy affects the environment. Not only does solar energy make your wallet happy, but it will also make the planet happy as well.

So if youve ever wondered what the actual impact solar has on the environment is, youll want to pay close attention to this section. Also, before you keep reading, make sure you understand that there are still some other implications that come along with it.

The good

In many cases solar energy can actually bequite good for the environment, because it can be used to replace other energysources. This is a great thing, because increased solar production can lead toa reduction in carbon emissions let out by fossil fuels. When you replace thispollution, you start to see how solar energy can be better for the Earthoverall.

The bad

While solar energy definitely can have a positive impact on the planet, there is a bit of a catch. In order to store energy harnessed by the sun, photovoltaic cells need to be produced.

These cells are what make solar energy work, but they come at a cost to the environment. This is due to the fact that in some cases toxic materials are utilized when these cells are made.

So while solar energy can reduce carbonemissions produced by fossil fuels, the toxic materials used to createphotovoltaic cells can be quite the tradeoff.


How Do Solar Panels Work For Your Home

Solar energy is growing worldwide as more and more countries switch on to the need for renewable energy types. The sun shines every day and amazingly the energy it provides the earth for one hour could meet global energy needs for a whole year.

However, we are only able to harness 0.001 per cent of that energy, so we simply have to utilise as much of the power that this incredible star at the centre of the Solar System offers as we can.

The use of solar panels dates back to 1839 when Alexandre Edmond Becquerel discovered the photovoltaic effect, explaining how electricity can be generated from sunlight. Clever boy.

The cost of solar energy has dropped in recent years as the clamour for green energy options grow and technical efficiencies improve.

Today, solar panels are a viable way of cutting your electricity bills as well as allowing you to do your bit in the battle to live self-sustainably, or at least reduce the carbon footprint in your home. Its an easy way to help save the planet, so youre doing right by your children and your childrens children too.

How Do Solar Panels Work Step By Step Overview Of The Solar Generation Process

Solar power generation starts when solar panels absorb photons, or particles of light, with photovoltaic cells, generating this direct current energy and then converting it to usable alternating current energy with the help of inverter technology. AC energy then flows through the homes electrical panel and is distributed accordingly. The main steps for how solar panels work for your home are:

Don’t Miss: How To Become A Sole Proprietor In Texas

Calculating Average Rv Consumption

The energy usage in an RV may vary for people as every person uses their RVs differently. On average, the majority of people use a 200ah battery with 800 watts of solar panels in their vehicles.

In the table below, you can see the average electrical consumption by appliances in an RV.

RV appliances

How Do Solar Panels Work On Houses

How Do Solar Panel Work

Solar panels work by absorbing sunlight with photovoltaic cells, usually after being placed on the roof of a house. The panels convert this sunlight into direct current energy which travels inside the house to an inverter, which in turn converts it to alternating current energy, which then flows through the homes electrical panel powering any appliances with electricity. Any excess electricity will be sent off to the electric grid, which in turn provides you with the electricity needed if you use more than the panels create.

Thats a lot to take in all in one go, so heres your four-step overview:

  • Solar panels absorb energy from the sun and convert it into DC electricity.
  • DC electricity from your solar panels is converted to AC electricity by inverter technology .
  • Electricity flows through your home, powering electronic appliances and devices.
  • Any extra electricity produced by the solar panels is fed back to the electric grid.
  • You May Like: How Much Do Solar Installers Get Paid

    Ithelps Us Become Energy Independent

    Thesun will continue to shine for another 5 billion years, but limited resourceslike fossil fuels will eventually run out and cannot be replenished. Beingindependent will enable us to expand our renewable resources as technologyadvances, and we discover new applications for renewable energy in our dailylives.

    What Components Make Up A Solar System

    Solar panels are the most obvious components of a photovoltaic system, but only represent about 30% of the total systems cost. The high-tech shimmer of a solar panel is just the tip of the iceberg that a photovoltaic system uses to harness renewable energy from the sun.

    Lets take a closer look at the important components that make up a solar system.

    Recommended Reading: Are Solar Panels Worth It In Michigan

    Does A Tesla Solar Roof Increase Home Value

    When you make huge, costly home improvements, you expect that this will increase your property value and add more money to your home’s resell potential. After all, thats half the point of making big home upgrades.

    You expect that the upgrades you make will come back to you in the form of resell value for your home. This helps mitigate the cost of making these big upgrades in the first place.

    However, this may not be the case with a solar roof. In some cases, having a solar roof can increase your resell value by up to $15,000, according to the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable energy. But this is not always so.

    The amount your home’s price increases, or if it increases at all, has a lot to do with you where you are located and who is buying your home. Solar panels are not always a selling point for every buyer, as some do not like the look of solar panels.

    A sleek Tesla roof looks very much like a normal roof, however, which can be a pretty big selling point with potential buyers because they get the money-saving power of solar but without the look of solar.

    All buyers are different and all markets are different so it cant be said that a Tesla solar roof will always increase a homes value or that it will increase the value by a significant amount. However, it will not ever decrease the value. And with some buyers, it can increase the resale value of the home by quite a lot.

    Find the right buyers and you will find yourself in a much better bargaining position.

    Usingrenewable Energy To Protect The Environment

    How do solar panels work for your home?

    Themost affordable and beloved renewable energy source that has gained a lot oftraction is solar energy. It is excellent for the environment since using solarenergy reduces the need for fossil fuels, which are the main cause of airpollution. It also aids in lowering carbon footprints, promoting beneficialclimate change, and lessening global warming.

    You May Like: Do Solar Panels Work In Cloudy Weather

    How Does A Solar Photovoltaic System Work

    As a solar professional, it’s important to be able to explain the process of how a solar photovoltaic system produces electricity. This process seems mysterious to many and misconceptions abound among those unfamiliar with solar energy. In this article, we get back to basics with an overview of how solar installations provide electricity and how the process works for the customer.

    How Solar Pv Panels Generate Electricity

    Solar photovoltaic panels use cells containing a semi-conductor material to capture the suns energy and convert solar radiation into electricity. The most commonly used semi-conductor material is silicon, which is an abundant natural resource found in sand. When light strikes the cell a certain amount of energy is absorbed within the semiconductor material, knocking electrons, the negatively charged particles that form the basis of electricity, loose.

    Most PV cells have two layers of semi-conductor material, one positively charged and one negatively charged. When light shines on the semi-conductor the electric field across the junction between these two layers causes electricity to flow, generating direct current . By placing metal contacts on the top and bottom of the PV cell, we can draw that current off for external use.

    Solar PV electric panels do not require bright sunlight in order to operate, meaning that you can still generate electricity on cloudy days, however in general the greater the intensity of light the higher the flow of electricity. Although, due to the reflection of sunlight, days with slight cloud can result in higher energy yields than days with a completely cloudless sky.

    You May Like: Does A Sole Proprietor Need A Business License In Washington

    Helpful Tips For Conserving Energy

    Well, there is not a lot you can do to save energy consumption, especially with appliances like a coffee maker or microwave on board. One of the best ways to conserve energy is by reducing the overall electrical consumption and do not let the appliances run without a check.

    Also, you must give a lot of thought before installing certain devices and appliances in the RV and ensure that they will pay off in the long run.

    For example, fluorescent and LED bulbs tend to consume relatively less energy as compared to traditional incandescent bulbs. Also, they are meant to last longer, thereby saving you the cost of frequent replacements.

    You can also think about upgrading your old appliances as an old TV uses more watts per hour as compared to the advanced flat screens. Upgrading your old TV to the newer energy-efficient flat screen can help you slash down on the energy demand.

    After replacing the old equipment and light fixtures, you might be able to cut down the energy requirements by 10% to 15%.

    There are a couple of other things that you can incorporate into your lifestyle to minimize energy consumption needs.

    Can Solar Power Be Generated On A Cloudy Day

    How Solar Power Works

    Yes, it can. The UK may not seem the best country for generating energy from the sun, but solar power only requires some level of daylight in order to harness the suns energy. That said, the rate at which solar panels generate electricity does vary depending on the amount of direct sunlight and the quality, size, number and location of panels in use.

    Recommended Reading: How Much Power Can 1 Acre Of Solar Panels Produce

    Choosing A Solar Panel Size

    There are a number of methods to figure out the solar panel size. However, here is a simple one that can help you easily figure out what size solar panel for RV is needed.

    Suppose your RVs power consumption is 100ah and the average peak sun hours are six hours. According to the calculation, the solar power must store 100ah in these six hours or 16.6ah per hour.

    Amperage-hour requirements / 6 = the amperage that the solar panels need to output an hour

    A 100-watt solar panel gives 5.3ah power on average. In order to cover that 100ah power consumption requirement, you will need a 300-watt solar panel. However, getting a 400-watt solar panel is better to cover some extra power.

    Once you have figured out the number of amps the solar panel requires to run the appliances per hour, it becomes simpler to size the solar system for the RV.

    Make sure to purchase the highest quality solar panels you can afford, as they are efficient and likely to last long.

    Why You Should Pay Close Attention Tosolar Energy

    In a world thats starting to see theimpact created by decades of abuse from fossil fuels, solar energy is startingto sound more appealing as we approach 2020. The environment has changed, theprice of oil barrels is always on the rise, and we need to step back and askourselves: is it really worth it?

    Thats what were here to show you today.Solar energy is on the rise, and while it might not seem like a popular option,youll want to at least learn about it. Then maybe, once you see the impact,you can make an informed decision about turning to solar energy.

    Recommended Reading: How To Harness Solar Energy At Home

    How Does Solar Energy Power Your Home

    In this section, well explain the process by which homes can generate and use solar energy by using solar panels.

    Usable solar power is produced in 4 steps:

  • Solar panels generate DC electricity
  • Solar inverter converts power into usable AC electricity
  • Solar inverter supplies power to the home
  • Excess solar power is exported to the grid
  • How Solar Power Works

    Home Solar Panel System | How it Works
    • The sun shines on the solar panels generating DC electricity
    • The DC electricity is fed into a solar inverter that converts it to 240V 50HzAC electricity.
    • The 240V AC electricity is used to power appliances in your home.
    • Surplus electricity is fed back into the main grid.

    Whenever the sun shines , the solar cells generate electricity. The grid connect inverter converts the DC electricity produced by the solar panels into 240VAC electricity, which can then be used by the property/household.

    If a grid connect system is producing more power than the home consumes, the surplus is fed into the power grid. Some electricity companies meter the electricity fed into the grid by your system and provide a credit on your bill. How much you are paid is determined by the feed-in tariff.

    When the solar cells are not producing power, for example at night, power comes from the mains power grid as usual. The energy retailer charges the usual rate for the power used.

    As all components in a system have no moving parts, you can expect a long hassle free life from your solar power system! Generous government solar rebates and incentives mean you can also save thousands on a grid connect system for a limited time!

    Read Also: Who Is The Largest Manufacturer Of Solar Panels

    Energy Pricing And Incentives

    The political purpose of incentive policies for PV is to facilitate an initial small-scale deployment to begin to grow the industry, even where the cost of PV is significantly above grid parity, to allow the industry to achieve the economies of scale necessary to reach grid parity. The policies are implemented to promote national energy independence, high tech job creation and reduction of CO2 emissions. Three incentive mechanisms are often used in combination as investment subsidies: the authorities refund part of the cost of installation of the system, the electricity utility buys PV electricity from the producer under a multiyear contract at a guaranteed rate, and Solar Renewable Energy Certificates


    With investment subsidies, the financial burden falls upon the taxpayer, while with feed-in tariffs the extra cost is distributed across the utilities’ customer bases. While the investment subsidy may be simpler to administer, the main argument in favour of feed-in tariffs is the encouragement of quality. Investment subsidies are paid out as a function of the nameplate capacity of the installed system and are independent of its actual power yield over time, thus rewarding the overstatement of power and tolerating poor durability and maintenance. Some electric companies offer rebates to their customers, such as Austin Energy in Texas, which offers $2.50/watt installed up to $15,000.

    Net metering

    Feed-in tariffs

    How Are Solar Systems Designed

    Two important factors are considered when designing solar systems: available space and energy demand. All the nuts and bolts of solar system design hinge on these two factors, so a thorough understanding of them is essential to a well-planned solar installation.

    To get started, a solar designer will calculate daily energy needs, usually by taking a look at the locations utility bill. Next, the designer will determine the ideal number of solar panels for the project and available space to accommodate them. With energy needs and available space determined, a designer can start shopping for components.

    Designing a solar system can be complicated. A designer must determine space requirements, potential shade, optimal panel pitch/angle, necessary permits, and more. Software solutions can help estimate solar energy needs and plan the best solar system.

    For example, with just an energy bill, Aurora Solars design software automatically renders high-quality designs and materials recommendations for any location. Aurora also provides multiple planning and design tools into one intuitive package, including site design, load profiles, shade analysis, automatic system design, sales proposals, permit templates, and more.

    Read Also: Can Solar Panels Be Turned Off

    Benefits Of Solar Panels

    Now you know what they are and how they work, we can tell you why to care.

    • Renewable energy source: Solar energy is accessible for as long as we have the sun, which scientists reckon will be at least five billion years. Its truly a renewable energy source, doesnt produce gases, pollute water or create noise. Its a green dream.
    • Reduces electricity bills: Since youll be generating some of your energy needs from solar panels, your total electricity bills will drop. You can also make money by selling any unused electricity back to the grid. And you can still switch gas and electricity suppliers when you have solar panels.
    • Timing: Household energy usage needs tend to be higher in the afternoon and evenings, when people are at home. This is perfect as solar energy reaches maximum production around those times. Note: solar panels dont work at night.
    • Low maintenance: Solar panels dont require much maintenance just cleaning a few times a year. Warranties are usually for 20-25 years and the inverter only needs to be changed after 10 years.

    It Reduces Energy Bills

    How does solar power work? â Creative Living

    Solar energy help reduces energy bills by helping you avoid or minimize dependence on the costly power from the grid.

    Individuals who do not own a solar power system but are supplied with electricity generated by solar plants also benefit from reduced energy costs. How?

    The cost of production is usually small compared to when traditional sources of energy are used. Thus, the price per unit of power supplied to the consumer also tend to reduce.

    Also Check: How Much Power Does 20 Solar Panels Produce

    Popular Articles
    Related news