How Residential Solar Power Works – Re-Thinking Solar (Part 2)
You are contributing to a cleaner environment by upgrading to solar generated electricity. You are also taking a step toward energy independence when you begin using solar power in your home.
To better understand solar electric systems and how they work, you first need to understand the technical components making up a residential solar energy system.
New solar rental services are emerging that offer solar power in new and simple ways. There are a number of solar panel rental offers now on the market. They offer energy efficiency in your home, better control and tracking of home power, and make a home’s electricity services more reliable, and renewable.
The remainder of this article will explain and further define many of the common components making up home solar energy system.
Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Panels
The primary components of a home solar system are the Solar (PV) panels. These panels utilize solar cells to convert sunlight directly into home electricity. A group of solar cells hooked together make a solar panel. A single solar panel can produce 250 watts (w) of electricity when the sun is shining at maximum capacity. The panels then route power through an inverter where a controller determines how to distribute the power throughout your home.
Solar Energy Controller and Inverter
The controller is the device that monitors and manages the distribution of electricity produced by a residential solar energy system. Its capability extends even further by monitoring and managing the flow of energy between the house, the solar (PV) panels & system, and the local utility company. Often these controllers also have the ability to manage secondary storage through the use of batteries for more flexibility and control.
Coupled with the controller is the brains of the operation; the inverter. An inverter is in essence an electronic circuit that converts direct current (DC) to alternating current (AC). An inverter allows the 12 or 24 volt DC power produced from solar panels to supply AC power to operate all of the electrical needs around your house.
Solar Array Mounting and Connection Components
Connection components are made up of electrical wiring and the rail mounting structure. Several solar panels are arranged into a grid, secured by a rail mounting device, and connected together to make a solar (PV) array. Electrical wiring is needed to connect the solar panels to the controller, then to your meter box, and then to your utility company via the existing electricity grid. Little additional solar energy equipment is needed, other than the panels, controller and inverters, wiring, and the roof mounting system.
The mounting rail is another simple structure that secures your solar (PV) array to your roof with the little need to drill holes through your singles. It is constructed with sturdy materials and engineering, allowing for quick assembly of the solar panels.
Rental Options for Residential Solar Energy Systems
Homeowners now have the ability to generate electricity right at home in safe, simple, and environmentally conscious way. Residential solar energy systems convert sunlight (i.e. photons – straight into home power and common everyday electricity. Residential solar energy systems, now offered to homeowners on a rental basis, provide a new source of reliable electricity and they enhance electric services without expensive investments in solar purchases.
In a future article, we will continue this series related to residential solar energy systems. We will explain in common terms how to measure the power of the sun. One objection often voiced by homeowners researching home solar power relates to the quality of the sunlight.
Is too cloudy? Is it too foggy? How does snow effect solar cell output? We will explain how to determine whether your geographic location receives enough sunlight hours to make solar suitable.