How Does Solar Energy Work
Author: Marty Johnson
Frequent topics discussed at the office water cooler these days are whether energy prices will ever go back down and how does solar power work? A major worry of changing to solar is the expense of purchasing and installing the materials. But check out the ever increasing number of state and federal grants available to help with the purchase to help fund the project. Setting aside the initial cost factor, using solar power in the home is an attractive option.
The concept of solar power is the exact same in both residential and commercial uses with the scale of the application being the only difference. It is obvious that a factory or warehouse will require substantially a larger amount of electricity and therefore a more complicated and costly application.
Solar panels are lines with a semiconductor than generates electricity when the suns rays come in contact with it. Solar panels can also be constructed to heat both your water and air coming into the structure through your ventilation system. The electricity generated by the solar panels is then routed to your controller/regulator where the voltage/amperage is adjusted to your system\'s needs then routed to your electrical system or storage system.
There are three major components to a solar power system. The first is the photovoltaic panels, also known as solar panels or PV panels. The second is the current regulator or controller, which controls the voltage/amperage of the electricity that the solar panels generate. The third component is the storage system. This is typically an array of batteries used to store any energy that is created by the system and not need during the day.
Solar panels can vary greatly in cost depending on the type of installation you are aiming for. If your building is in a more remote area and is industrial you can use the typical boxy style roof mounted panels. In a business or industrial application solar panels can be installed not only on the much larger roof space offered by an industrial structure but additional panel arrays can also be installed on the ground offering additional power generation.
Solar panels can be mounted in a rooftop setup in addition to ground and pole mounts. The ground and pole mounts offer additional design flexibility especially when your structure is in the shade for part of the day. Solar panels can also be equipped with mechanisms that allow them to follow or \"track the sun throughout the day maximizing their exposure to the suns rays. One of the largest drawbacks to solar installation is of course sunset. This is remedied by installing a battery array or storage system, or using supplemental power from the utility company power grid.
It is now possible to build the solar cells into the roof, awning and window features if you would like a hidden solar power features with a dual function. In a residential area roofing material which already has the solar cells included can be installed which function just the same as an asphalt shingle plus it has the added component of the solar cells which affords leeway in designing a house that looks like a home instead of something from outer space.
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