How Do Solar Power Panels Work?
During the day the photovoltaic cells (solar cells) absorb light and convert it to DC electricity. This electricity is then fed down to the Inverter that converts the electricity to 230v AC, which is then usable by your home and/or business.
Unlike solar hot water, solar power panels work on light and not heat which seems to be a common misconception. Solar panels will actually become less efficient as it gets hotter.
How Viable is Solar power?
Solar is the cleanest, greenest and most viable form of energy available. It produces no waste or pollution, does not contribute to global warming, acid rain or smog and reduces our reliance on dirty coal-fired electricity, which causes massive amounts of greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere.
The energy used to manufacture a solar power system is small compared to the energy generated by the system and is paid back many times over the life of the system. Solar power is completely renewable – so it will never run out – and in sun-drenched Australia, there is plenty of it.
Did you know that the energy from sunshine falling on a single acre of land in Africa is capable of producing the energy equivalent of 800 barrels of oil each year!
Useful Tips when installing solar:
Use as much power during the day as possible.
Identify the hours that your solar works the best (speak to us) and try to use your heavy usage appliances during these times.
Reduce evening consumption where possible and use efficient appliances and lighting such as LED bulbs or Energy Saving bulbs.
Replace any old fridges and faulty appliances where possible
Run your air-conditioners through the day to cool your house down instead of during the evening.
Run your pool pump on the peak tariff and set it to run during the day.
If your hot water unit is on the peak tariff install a timer to ensure that it heats the water during the day.
Types of solar power systems
Grid Connect Solar Power Systems
Grid-connect Solar power system modules produce power from daylight, and convert sunlight directly into electricity through solar panel arrays mounted on the roof, powering your home. They work any time the sun is shining; at night and in bad weather, your home gets its power from the main utility network.
When a grid-connect solar power system generates excess power, this electricity can be fed back into the grid, effectively running your electricity meter backwards and saving you money.
Off grid Solar Power Systems
Off grid solar power systems, which don’t tie into the power matrix, run on a blend of solar panels, batteries, wind and sometimes a reinforcement generator running on gas, petrol or diesel. Off grid solar power systems are costly for the most part because of high cost of batteries. However with correct system sizing and the integration of a fuel-efficient generator initial capital expense can be reduced.
Off-grid solar power systems are most commonly used in most part of Africa that is not connected to the main electricity grid. These systems work by converting the sunshine that hits your solar panel into electricity that supplies your property and charges the battery bank. At night or in bad weather, power comes from the battery into your home; if the battery level gets low, a generator can be used to power your home and charge the battery.
Advantages of Solar
Solar produces no carbon footprint or harmful emissions.
Unlike Petrol Generators, Solar Panels produce no noise.
Solar Energy produces significant cost savings over petrol and diesel generators. Solar costs are fixed – it is not impacted by changes to Diesel or any other input prices.
Solar electric power panels are proven and highly reliable; they have long warranties and last 30 to 40 years or longer. And solar power costs are fixed; there is no volatility due to fuel price fluctuation.
The use of Solar energy will help to reduce the number of unnecessary deaths caused by generators each year through smoke inhalation, carbon monoxide poisoning and house fires.
Solar produces no carbon footprint or harmful emissions.Solar electric power technology can provide electricity for the world indefinitely without contributing to global climate change or requiring hazardous (nuclear) waste disposal.
A single 100-square mile solar power system could provide all the electricity needed in Nigeria.
There are no moving parts and practically no maintenance is required.