Understand Solar Panels and How They Work

Posted on 24th June 2011 in environment

Solar power is a good green source of energy and a serious option to consider for your energy needs. Other options such as wind turbines and hydroelectric generator can be used in but for most homes and smaller business solar is one of the most achievable options.

solar pv Scotland

Solar panels and solar power generates power from the sun by converting sunlight to electricity with no moving parts, zero emissions, and no or little maintenance. A solar panel is made up of a series of individual silicon cells that generate electricity from sunlight. As the light hits the surface of the solar panel the light particles produce an electrical current on the surface of small silicon wafers. One single solar cell produces around half a volt of energy.

Smaller solar panels can produce up to 12 volts of energy. These smaller panels contain an average of 36 solar cells. Large solar panels will produce up to 24 volts of energy. These will contain around 72 solar cells.

Solar panels can be wired together to create a bank of panels and increase the amount of energy you can harness. This gives the advantage of using a higher voltage output so the solar panels can use smaller wire to transfer the electric power from the solar panel to the output, charging batteries for example.

Solar panels come in different types. One is a Monocrystalline solar panels. These are most efficient but the most expensive solar panels made. The solar cells use very pure type of silicon and use a complicated growth process for the silicon crystals.

The middle ground for solar panels is possibly Polycrystalline. This type of panel is sometimes called Multi-crystalline solar panels as they consist of a range of Polycrystalline cells. This form of solar panel is less expensive and less efficient than the type using Monocrystalline cells. This is down to the fact that the cells are not grown in a large block of many crystals.

The Amorphous solar panel is not made from crystals like other types of panel. These are metal or glass coated with a layer or silicon to create the solar panel. Amorphous solar panels are in the bracket of the cheaper type of panel, as they are less expensive than other types. This type of solar panel is less energy efficiency so more are needed to generate the same amount of energy as more expensive alternatives.

Solar panels are a real option and a potentially good investment to help save money and energy. After the installation and set up costs that can be expensive and off putting, the payback will work for itself. For homes and small business solar is a real solution to meet the demands of trying to find lower costs energy and reduce your energy bills.

Richard I. Green is an expert on solar panels Scotland and renewable and wind energy. For more information on solar panels and solar pv visit the www.absolutesolarandwind.co.uk and web site.

Solar Energy – The Main Advantages

Posted on 1st May 2011 in solar power

Renewable energy sources like solar energy and wind energy offer people many advantages. Solar energy, for example, is the best source of energy humans can utilize to its fullest potential. Solar energy is the energy coming from the sun and is virtually limitless and offers many solar energy advantages. This means that humankind can use this energy for whatever they intend to and for how long they wanted to.

There are many solar energy advantages. First on the list of solar energy advantages is that it helps in saving Mother Earth. The next advantage is what really lures people into using it – cost cutting. And of course, one of the solar energy advantages is the government incentive programs for people who are going green.solar panels

The price of today’s electricity from commercial power companies is steadily rising and that is why using solar energy is such a tempting option. There will be no recurring monthly expenses when you use solar energy. What you would pay is for an up-front payment for installing a solar system that will provide you electricity from solar energy. Once done, there will be no need to worry about additional expenses since the solar panels that will be installed are long-lasting and only requires little maintenance. Moreover, there are no longer power interruptions since solar energy can provide continuous electricity.

One major solar energy advantage is its cost cutting benefit. You see, the only time that you are going to spend a considerable amount of money when using solar energy is during the installation of a solar power system. After that, there will be no more additional costs. The maintenance for the system is not that much of a burden. Solar power systems are long-lasting and stay very efficient. Moreover, solar energy makes sure that there would be no power interruption since the energy captured can be stored in a battery for later use.

Government incentive programs are also there to aid future green individuals. These programs include tax exemptions or reductions, financial aid, rebates, and additional renewable energy source laws. All of which are aimed to help those individuals in switching to a greener electricity source. If you wanted to earn money while saving Mother Earth, you can also do that. Simply sell back the excess electricity produced by your solar power system to the national grid and you can earn some money at the end of every year or a certain time period. This is made possible because the government allows it.

There are many advantages that solar energy offers to people. All of them can be beneficial not only for the person using solar energy but to all of humanity. When using solar energy, you can save money while saving the Earth.

For more information on solar energy Scotland contact the Absolute Solar and Wind Web site

Green DIY Energy Solar Power Tips

Posted on 3rd April 2011 in energy

There has been so much information given to the public about solar energy that many people feel they know it well. After seeing programs on installing green DIY solar in a home with little or no assistance one begins to wonder how hard it can be. If a person has not had experience with solar cells and panels and their installation, it is important to look at all of the options that are available.

When thinking about installing solar power in a home one needs to consider the amount of energy that is required to power a home. In homes that have only electrical energy the requirement placed on the solar energy units will be much greater than on a home that has a combination of utilities in use. Either way, solar energy will significantly reduce the costs of an electrical bill.

Knowing about the “guts” of a solar panel will help an individual to decide if they want to start from scratch and build their solar panel, get a kit where most of the tedious labor is already done, or get some help or consultation in getting the solar panel installed.

Amorphous cells which are normally not as efficient as the other cells, monocrystalline cells which are usually the most expensive of the cell choices, and polycrystalline cells which are small and are pieced together.

Each cell produces between 1 and 2 watts of electricity. It takes a lot of these cells pieces together to run a home. When one thinks about the fact that it takes up to 36 polychrystalline cells chained together to produce enough power for a battery, one can begin to see where this could require a lot of space to provide enough electricity for a house.

Solar panels actually are what holds the cells in place. They come in a variety of styles and are made from different materials. Some DIY’ers who use polycrystalline cells actually encase the chained cells in resin to protect them from the elements.

Prior to starting a green DIY solar project an individual will want to look at the options available for getting the job done with the least amount of worry and time. There are several ways to do this. There are multiple plans available on-line that give detailed instructions. There are also companies that provide solar kits which give a person the cells, panels, and instructions that they will need to complete their project successfully.

Finding My Carbon Footprint

Posted on 27th February 2011 in environment

In the United Kingdom the Carbon Trust gives the definition of a carbon footprint as “the total set of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions caused directly and indirectly by an organization, an individual, or product such as a car, or bicycle”.

Contributing your part can help reduce this, by looking at the way every day tasks influence your carbon consumption. Look at the way you travel to work, consider car sharing, recycle plastic, glass and cans and buying eco friendly products will all help.

The products you buy will all contribute to your carbon footprint. This is because they have to be manufactured, picked and packaged and then transported to the shops where you buy them. The energy used in this process all contributes to green house gases. Try looking for local products that have not travelled far and low eco friendly packaging.

Determining your carbon footprint is measured by the quantity of greenhouse gas that you are contributing to the planet’s atmosphere. This term first originated from carbon dioxide, the greenhouse gas that is the widely identified as the main contributor to climate change today

You can try and offset your personal carbon emissions, by doing so you are doing your part to help reduce the amount of carbon dioxide produced and help slow down global warming and climate change.

Carbon offsetting schemes are available help you offset your personal carbon emissions. These schemes invest in green projects to invest in energy efficient schemes, wind power, solar power, or new tree plantations. Try and make sure the company you purchase your carbon credits/offsets from is a member of a reputable body or well know organisation such as the Carbon Trust or the Energy Saving Trust.

Being proactive in reducing your carbon emissions can be done with the use an individual carbon calculator to determine your carbon footprint. You could get a surprise just how much carbon is creates every day, and hopefully learn a little about where you can make some real changes.

Tips to help reduce your carbon emissions can include making few trips to the shops, using electricity at off peak times, using a green energy supplier, and simply turning off the lights when not in the room can all make a difference.

Ian. R. Richardson is an expert author on renewable energy and environmental topics. For more information and news visit for the www.personalcarbon.co.uk and www.tradingpersonalcarbon.co.uk web sites.

What Are Th Advantages of Solar Power for You

Posted on 20th February 2011 in solar, solar panels and solar pv, solar power

One of the main advantages of solar energy is that it’s one of the most abundant sources of energy on this planet. While there is a lot of talk about tapping into this energy source, individually there are many benefits for adopting this technology. The best thing about solar energy is that it can be used for small solutions as well as major ones. So you can start with small and simple solar solutions and then grow to something more robust. You would be surprised to know that the total sunlight that falls on earth is more than enough to satisfy the total energy needs on this planet 35000 times over. Now that is, truly an abundant source of energy.

There are many terms commonly associated with solar energy like renewable source and sustainable energy production. Renewable source of energy, as the name suggests, is one which can replenish itself automatically without human intervention. Solar energy is an abundant source of energy which will last as long as earth lasts, so it is considered renewable.

Sustainable energy production is a process by which we can meet present energy demands without jeopardising our future generations. Solar energy is one source where we can harvest as much as we want without compromising our children’s ability to do the same and survive on this planet. Solar energy is a great way to move towards sustainable development.

However, the reality is that solar energy is not a major fuel source today. Fossil fuels continue to pollute and dominate the power domain. America alone imports 50% of all its fossil fuel needs. This was just 33% some thirty years ago and is predicted to rise to 66% in the coming years. So we are not just polluting, but we’re also becoming indebted to other nations. Using solar energy helps us break out from this cycle. It can be produced within the US without relying on foreign nations. Switching to solar power moves you out of the utility supplier grid and helps bring down your power bills. Besides, a solar home commands a premium price over regular home as well.

You can insulate yourself from the electric power bills by using solar energy. With sun powering your ecofriendly house, you need not worry about hikes in power bills anymore. Regardless of what the local utility company charges, your costs will not change since you are relying on sun for your power. Every house that moves off the grid onto the solar power nets the nation energy savings since there is a lesser need to import fuel. By opting for solar energy you are also reducing your carbon footprint in the world. Given that the average American has an 18 ton/year carbon footprint; this is a lot of pollution for us to bring down.

The use of solar energy is not just talk. In fact, on a clear, sunny day the total sunlight falling on a square meter area is sufficient to generate 1kWh of electric power. Realistically you’ll get about 6 kWh on a good sunny day. Given that an average home requires around 30 kWh, a five square meter solar unit is your answer to all your power needs. With this solution, you know that your energy source will never get exhausted and that your power bills will never fluctuate.

Electric energy is one of the most widely used forms of energy on this planet. This is because most of what we do today is powered by electricity. Fortunately, solar energy can be transformed into electric energy easily. Presently, the majority of electric power is produced is by burning coal. If we switch to solar, we can save on all of that greenhouse gas pollution. Interestingly, solar units function at their best just when the need for electric power is also at its peak – middays; so solar units are great to satisfy peak time power demands in most nations.

If you really want to tap into all these benefits, this is the right time to do so. Government is urging people to adopt such new technologies. There are a lot of incentives, rebates and other attractive options government is offering to people moving to solar energy.