The Basics Of A Solar Electric Power System
Find an application and a benefit or two that makes sense
for you? If so, you're ready to take a more in-depth look at how to get started
enjoying solar power! Here is a basic introduction to what's in a Solar Electric
Fundamental Component Descriptions of a Photovoltaic (Solar Electric) Power System
Solar systems begin with the solar module.
Modules gather solar energy in the form of sunlight and convert it into direct current
(DC) electricity. The more sunlight they receive, the more electricity they produce. Solar
modules are the heart of the system. They are the power generators.
Components such as charge regulators,
batteries and inverters regulate, store, condition and deliver the electricity. Other
elements connect the different components of the system.
Solar systems have to meet high standards
of reliability and economic efficiency. This can only be guaranteed by the use of
field-proven quality components that are well matched.
||Sunlight is energy
in the form of light. It is the fuel of a solar (photovoltaic) system.
||Solar modules generate
DC electricity directly from sunlight. Use one or more modules depending on your power
needs and the amount of sunlight available.
||Charge regulators are
the link between the modules, battery and load. They protect the battery from overcharge
or excessive discharge.
||Batteries store the
energy generated by the solar modules.
||Inverters convert DC
(direct current) electricity into AC (alternating current) to run many common appliances
structures hold the solar modules securely in place. Ground, roof and pole mounting
versions are available.
lights and equipment being powered are called electrical 'loads'. Energy-efficient loads
contribute to overall system efficiency and economy.
|Wiring / Interconnects
||Proper wiring and
connections must be specified for every segment of the system to assure best performance.
generators (e.g. diesel) may be used as back-up for excessive power demands or during
unanticipated long sunless periods.
||Solar modules should be
installed in an area that is generally free from shade and receives as much direct sun
exposure as possible.
||Solar systems are one of
the easiest and most reliable ways to generate electricity. Regular maintenance to check
wiring, connections, batteries, and overall system condition will help assure long-term
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