We design and install equipment that converts energy from the sun into usable electricity.
As electricity prices increase there is an increasing desire to thwart growing energy bills, and Solar PV systems are a good way to become less reliant on electricity retailers, and now also there is new regulations which allows you to easily become self sufficient if you so desire.
What do you need to know about Solar Power?
Lets start with some basics – Solar Power or Photovoltaics
The chemistry that occurs is the photovoltaic effect, a cell consists of two high grade thin silicon wafers when light falls on these DC electricity is produced. Commonly there are two types available for commercial or residential installation today, these are Monocrystalline or Polycrystalline cells. These cells are laid out together to form a solar module, today these range from less than 1 watt up to a whopping 360watt.
Commonly today we install modules between 250 and 300watt for Grid connected systems.
Solar modules are mounted on frames, either ground mounted, or on roof tops.
When producing household power for grid connected systems this quantity is usually from 1.5kW up to 5kW for residential, and 100kW plus systems are commonplace in commercial applications like shops and factories.
Solar modules in western Australia are set up with a tilt facing due North to maximise their year round efficiency. Albeit it’s not uncommon to place modules facing East and West when power is desired to either start earlier or work later during sunlight hours.
Now that we have explained how its produced, we need to convert this DC power into useful energy. In its plainer DC form a solar module can be connected via a charger to a rechargeable battery, applications are large and common place, charging for street lights, charging for garden lights, charging for Marine Beacons, and remote commercial telecommunication facilities are but a few.
Another direct connect application has been PV Solars use with remote water pumping, when the sun rises and there is enough power being produced the pump starts. This system has by and large replaced our traditional windmills in Australia as a more reliable and efficient system.
AC Systems are created by connecting the DC Solar modules to a converter called an Inverter.
These inverters come in a variety of shapes and sizes and configurations. In an AC system the inverter converts the DC produced by the solar module and changes its state to AC which we use for our general power in just about all instances.
There are two point five main varieties of an AC powered system, one is Grid connected, and the other Stand Alone. The point five is the Hybrid system.
A grid connected solar power system has solar modules providing power to an AC inverter, this power is connected via the electricity meter of the property onto the general power grid. Thus when the sun shines electricity can be exported to the Grid and provide power, as does a large generator at the power station. So the grid connected Solar power system is in fact a generator.
The stand alone system is not connected to a network or power grid, most commonly in rural and remote areas where network power is unavailable or too expensive.
This system does not have the luxury of being on a grid that always has power available even when the sun isnt shining. This system comprises of Solar Modules, an Inverter, a charger, a battery bank, and often a backup generator.
Solar is still a brilliant investment, and with the hybrid technology and regulations you could become virtually self powered not having to pay much of a power bill for many years.
But first you need the Solar Power System.
What and how to choose.