Showing posts with label solar electricity. Show all posts
Showing posts with label solar electricity. Show all posts

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

What is a Solar Panel Kit for Home?

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Solar panel kit is pre-packed solar equipment that after installation can form an operating solar power system for your home. Almost all solar kits come with everything you need to have a working solar system (complete equipment). For some kits you may need to buy additional items, so you should be careful. 


Solar panel kits can vary in price depending on their build, power generation, size, and components. Therefore, they can cost from a few hundred up to thousands of dollars. Once you choose and buy a solar panel kit, it will be shipped to your home and all you have to do is install it yourself (DIY- do-it-yourself).

Before buying a solar panel kit, you should do some research and calculations regarding current energy consumption in your home, and how it will change in the future. Thus you will know how much solar power and how many panels you will need. You should also decide whether your solar power system will be grid-connected, off-grid or hybrid.

Here are the basic components that you can expect in most solar panel kits: solar panels, solar inverter, batteries (off-grid), charge controller (off-grid), mounting hardware, wiring and connectivity parts. You can choose between two types of solar panels: polycrystalline and monocrystalline. Monocrystalline panels are more expensive, more efficient, and more heat resistant.

Solar panel kits are suitable for small homes. There are solar panel kits for large homes but as you go up in size (1,000W and more), solar installations become more complicated. It doesn’t make sense to install a large solar panel system yourself. And If you are not sure about your knowledge it is recommended to seek professional help. Installing your solar panel kit may save you money but keep in mind that it can be time-consuming, challenging, and even risky in terms of safety and how to do it right. Also, if your solar panel kit is grid-tied you have to check whether your utility company allows self-installed solar systems to connect to the grid. 

If you are absolutely beginner to solar electricity it is a good idea to buy a solar starter kit. Starter solar panels kit won’t be able to fully power your home but it is just a few hundred dollars and includes the parts you need to start seeing if solar is right for you. It can power some of your electric appliances and it is usually grid-connected, which means that it will work with the existing grid. Typically solar starter panels ranging from 50W - 400W.

Solar panel kits are a good option for garages, farms, boats, caravans and off-grid cabins.

More detailed information you can find here:
https://www.letsgosolar.com/solar-panels/solar-panels-kits/

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GoGreenSolar.com - The #1 Online Destination For DYI Solar Kits - Shop Now



Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Solar-Powered Charging Stations for Mobile Phones, Cameras, and Electric Vehicles

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Image credit: www.soldesignlab.com

Solar-powered charging stations are innovative solar-powered designs that can be used in public places when no electricity supply is available. You can see them alongside the streets, in the squares, and even as “umbrellas” attached to benches in public parks. On the market, there are also smart solar benches and they are an excellent addition to existing urban furniture.

Solar-powered charging stations are great to allow people to charge their small devices such as mobile phones, laptops, or cameras outdoors. Some of the solar-powered charging stations can power electric bikes, scooters, and cars, so recharging your car’s batteries is often cheaper at one of these stations. Solar-powered charging stations can provide also lighting, WI-Fi, give insight about the environment, and display information on a digital screen.

All solar-powered stations work similarly, although they might differ in terms of size, capacity, and the type of charging that is available. Each solar-powered station consists of an inflexible or flexible solar panel (or panels), battery system, charge controller, and inverter.

The benefits of solar-powered charging stations are numerous. First of all, they produce electricity without any emissions, making them one of the most environmentally-friendly technologies. Unlike coal, nuclear or gas-powered plants, solar energy does not produce emissions, nor toxic byproducts. And it is a renewable source of energy.

The implementation of solar technology in public places gives us free or cheap energy. Especially, for those living far from the electrical grid, solar charging stations for mobile phones can be the only way to stay connected. It is no surprise that in the developing countries more and more solar-powered charging stations are appearing. In countries where electricity is not accessible to all, public solar-powered charging stations for mobile phones are very popular. (Read this article)

Last but not least, with the solar-powered charging stations, we become energy independent and can spend more time outdoors. When we know that we can charge our mobile phones and other electric devices outside, in the streets and in the parks, it gives us more freedom and flexibility to spend time outdoors and in nature.

Sources: Inhabitat & Magesolar


Saturday, October 28, 2017

Solar-Powered School in Copenhagen

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This is one more interesting news that represent another effort to be developed colored solar panels.

The International School in Copenhagen is using custom-built colorful solar panels as a featured architectural element. Each panel is individually angled and the result is really cool impression. The materials that were used in the new building are entirely natural. Thus the school made both an aesthetic and sustainable decision.

The campus of the cosy school is covered by 12,000 solar tiles making it the largest solar facade in the world. On sunny days the solar panels generate electricity that is contribute to the grid and to the school itself.

The solar panels are spanning over an area of 65,100ft2 and provide it with 300 MWh of electricity per year, meeting over half of the school's energy needs. One of the key vision of the school is to educate thair students of a sustainable world.

The unique building stands out because the panels are a distinctive sea green, the same of Copenhagen’s symbol - Andersen’ mermaid, which welcomes tourist in the Danish capital. Although no pigments were used to make them, the color comes from a process of light interference developed over more than a decade in the labs of the Ecole Polytechnique Federale in Lausanne (EPFL).

Based on a new technology developed in Switzerland the process that produced color of these panels is a similar to the effect seen in soap bubbles.

The researchers developed special filters, which they applied to the glass panels in nanometric layers. This filter determines which wavelengths of light will be reflected as visible color. The rest of the sunlight is absorbed by the solar panel and converted into energy.

“The iris effect creates a colorful rainbow on a very thin layer. We used the same principle and adapted for glass,  said Jean-Louis Scartezzini, the head of the Solar Energy and Building Physics lab at EPFL.

The school building won the 2017 Iconic Award - an international award program for architecture and urban planning professionals in the architecture category.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Green Colored Solar Panels

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Highly rated models of solar panels are now running in excess of 20-percent efficiency at turning sunlight into electricity. But they are bulky and still aren't very pretty. In addition, traditional solar panels take up a lot of room.

Fortunately, solar technology is changing continuously. Earlier this year Tesla began selling solar shingles that can generate power for the home and still look like ordinary shingles. Other solar panel developers have made solar windows, skylights, patio covers, carports, and roads to generate electricity. And now researchers in the Netherlands say they have developed a process for making conventional bluish-black solar panels bright green. Probably the same technology might also make it possible to create panels in other colors, and even in white which would be a really big step in the solar industry. 

Researchers from AMOLF, the University of Amsterdam (UvA) and the Energy research Centre of the Netherlands (ECN) have developed a method for imprinting existing solar panels with crystalline silicon nanocylinders. The nanocylinders are about 100 nanometres wide and exhibit electromagnetic resonance that scatters a particular wavelength of light. They produce the green color by scattering green frequencies of light back while letting other frequencies of light pass through. They are laid down on the solar cells via a process the researchers likened to rubber stamping. The panels have a green appearance from most angles and they are only about 10 percent less efficient than conventional panels.

The method used for the colored solar panels is called soft-imprint lithography. “In principle, this technique is easily scalable for fabrication technology,” AMOLF scientific group leader and senior author Albert Polman said.

Such colored solar panels would afford a level of versatility - for example, red panels could be used on rooftops, white ones on walls, and the green ones could blend in with nature. Thus would encourage the reliance on solar energy and integration of solar technology into every part of our daily lives.

“You have to combine different nanoparticles, and if they get very close to each other they can interact and that will affect the color,” said Polman.

These aren't the first colored solar panels. But the ones already on the market use dyes and reflective coatings that give them their color, greatly reduce efficiency and they are about 45 percent less efficient than ordinary solar panels at generating electricity.

The new design was published online on August 15, 2017, in Applied Physics Letters.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Basic Things to Consider Before Buying a Solar Electric System

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Installing a solar power system requires very careful initial planning. First of all, you need to know exactly how much electricity your home uses each month. You may look up in your old electricity bills but also you should think about how your electricity needs will change over the next 10 years.

Solar photovoltaic panels can be installed on the roof, along a wall of the property or as standalone systems. If you are planning to install them on your roof, you need to make sure that the roof is strong enough to hold a solar panel because some of these panels can be quite heavy. A roof inspection (and any necessary repair) is recommended prior to a PV installation. Another thing you need to know is that the more sunlight modules collect, the more electricity they produce, thus the more energy your home will receive. Make sure that the roof (or wherever you intend to install your solar panels) is clear of any obstacles, such as trees or buildings, especially during peak production hours between 10am and 2pm.

Ideally, a solar system will go on a south/southwest-facing roof, although east and west facing roofs are good candidates, as well.

You should decide whether your system will be grid-connected, off-grid or hybrid. With a solar PV system connected to an electric distribution system (grid-connected) you can receive back-up power from it when your system doesn’t produce enough energy for your needs. When your solar PV system produces excess power, that electricity can be send back into the grid, and your local utility is required to buy it from you.

Picture: apps1.eere.energy.gov

A grid-connected solar power system is easily integrated into the existing electrical infrastructure of a house and the system can provide decades of reliable and environmental friendly electricity production.

A stand-alone (off-grid) solar PV system is independent of an electricity distribution grid operated by a utility. The electricity is provided by solar power alone and stored in a battery for later use. Such systems typically make sense in remote locations.

The average solar PV panel last approximately 30 years and many manufacturer warranties last for up to 20-25 years. Solar PV panels are designed and installed to be low-maintenance. However, it is very important to have your solar panels cleaned regularly because they benefit from being hosed off with water twice a year, especially after long periods without rain. Dust or dirt may cause a 10-15% reduction in their efficiency.

Before buying and installing the panels it is also essential to make sure that you understand the installation regulations in your local area. In most cases it is wise to check with the local authority before installing your solar electric system.



Sunday, November 16, 2008

Solar Energy and Solar Power

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Solar energy and solar power are two terms that are often used interchangeably but actually they are not the same thing. They both mean to receive and use solar rays, but more specifically solar power refers to electricity generated from the sun's light.

Solar PV PanelSolar energy is a more generic term and it describes all the uses of the light and heat from the sun. That includes solar power generation, but also solar thermal for water heating, space heating and cooling, and heat for industrial processes. Solar energy includes also passive solar energy that uses building orientation, design and materials to heat and cool buildings. 

Solar power is generated directly using photovoltaic (PV) technology. Solar PV panels (made from a semiconductor material) harness sunlight to create electricity to run appliances and lighting in your home. The electricity created by the solar system is direct current (DC), and the electricity we use in our homes is alternating currents (AC). Thus solar systems need an inverter which changes the DC current into useable AC current.

There are also concentrating solar power systems. They concentrate the sunlight using mirrors or lenses onto a receiver to produce heat. Then the heat can be used to generate electricity through steam turbines.

Solar energy is clean, environment-friendly, and most abundant renewable energy source we can use. In my next few posts, I will write about producing your own solar electricity by installing solar PV panels on the rooftop of your house, and what basic information householders need to know at the beginning.