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Thursday, October 21, 2010

Build Your Own Solar Panels

As conventional sources of energy become more expensive and unsustainable, more and more homeowners are turning to renewable energy to help power their home. Renewable energy is generated from natural resources that are instantly renewed and its consumption doesn't adversely affect the environment. Building solar panels are one of the best options available to help you generate renewable energy in your home.

Instead of buying commercial panels, DIY solar panels are more affordable and simple enough to construct with a good set of detailed plans and step-by-step instructions. The tools and materials needed to construct the panels include solar plates, photovoltaic or solar cells, a semi conductor block, inverter, conductor wires and a battery pack. These components are easily constructed and readily available at affordable prices.

There are 5 main steps to build your own solar panels, with a brief overview you will see just how easy it can be to generate solar energy in your home.
Step 1 - Construct the solar plates

The solar plates are the basis of your the main panel, this includes the solar cells, cement base to keep the cells at a safe temperature and a sheet of glass to protect the solar cells from weathering. The photovoltaic cells, or solar cells, absorb energy from direct sunlight. This direct sunlight has the potential to heat the solar cells to very high temperatures. This is why a layer of cement is added to the solar plate to keep the cells at a safe level to avoid any heat damage.

Step 2 - Connect conductor wires to link the cells

Each end of the solar cells should be connected by conductor wires to feed to the semiconductor block. This is how each solar cell is connected to create a working build it yourself solar panel. The solar energy captured in each individual solar cell is send through the conductor wires to a central location in the semi conductor block. From there the energy is able to be uniformly sent to your battery banks where it can be stored or sent to your inverter to be used in the home.
Step 3 - Install the solar panels

Where you decide to locate your build it yourself solar panels is just as important as ensuring the initial construction is done correctly. You need to find the best location around your home where your panels will receive the maximum amount of full sunlight throughout the day. This is why you see so many solar panels located on the roof of houses. Another idea is to construct a tall mounting pole in your garden or backyard to mount your build it yourself solar panels in a high location, but ensure that it will be kept out of the shade of overhanging trees.

Step 4 - Connect the inverter

The final stage in generating electricity from solar energy is by connecting an inverter to your battery kit. This is how the solar energy collected from your build it yourself solar panels is converted into the correct current to be fed directly into your homes power grid. The solar energy generated from your solar panels is fed through to your inverter as a direct current (DC), this needs to be converted into the alternating current (AC) that your home runs on.

Step 5 - Connect the battery

The battery is used to offload any unused electricity that is generated from your build it yourself solar panels. This excess energy can be kept in reserve for power outages or camping trips. You may not necessarily need to keep reserves of your solar energy as you may be able to contract with your current energy provider to pay you to feed your unused power back into the main power grid.

As you can see with a basic understanding of each of the components involved with build it yourself solar panels and how these components work together to capture and generate energy, it isn't necessarily a difficult or overcomplicated process. Of course, it is highly recommended you invest in a good detailed guide and further your understanding of the construction process and the technology involved before you go ahead and build your own solar panel.

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Sunday, October 10, 2010

Home Solar Power Systems For Domestic Use

Using home solar power systems in the U.S. is a concept that is still evolving. Compared to other nations like Germany, China and Spain, the U.S. is slow to catch on. Less than 1% of the electricity used in the nation is solar power, and much of that is probably in California.

Power companies in the U.S. currently operate by burning fossil fuels. Solar energy requires mirrors that reflect the rays of the sun to generate heat. That heat then helps to operate a generator and provide power. The solar photovoltaic panels that can be found atop house roofs and high-rise office buildings operate based on this process.

Perhaps one reason Americans have been slow to embrace the concept has to do with the cost of producing solar energy. It is extremely expensive, costing anywhere from two to four times what people pay to burn coal or use other forms of energy. Both consumers and power companies have been reluctant to take on the cost. The government has tried to assure potential converts by easing that burden. It has offered tax and stimulus incentives for those who begin to use solar energy.

In an effort to practice what it preaches, one government entity-the Obama White House-has confirmed plans to add solar panels and a hot water heater powered by solar energy by spring 2011. The New York Jets headquarters location has agreed to similar changes, as has the Kennedy Space Center for NASA. In recent press announcements, the White House has revealed the move is part of a Department of Transportation initiative to show citizens that solar energy is reliable. The Jets planned conversion is projected to save 540 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions a year.

As a leading state in solar energy reform, California will have an important role to play, too, in demonstrating the viability of solar energy. A $1.4 million government loan will enable the state to build a solar power plant in the middle of the Mohave Desert. That plant will generate power for almost 140,000 homes.

There is even news that scientists have come up with a technology that can be sprayed on windows to make them operate in the same way as photovoltaic panels. This means that existing windows can be converted for minimal equipment costs. It also eliminates the excuse of costly equipment that frequently prevents conversion.

Many potential believers also fear not being able to have much electric power at night - since there is no sun at that time. There have been plausible solutions to this challenge. The use of molten salts in pipes might help allay fears, since they can store heat energy from the sun to be released later. These salts have been known to kick out energy for almost eight hours after the sun has set.

No matter how skeptical some consumers choose to be, home solar power systems are becoming a strong alternative as renewable energy sources. If the use of it is a success for the leader of a nation and his family, it will surely become a reality for many other homes across the land somewhere in the close future.
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Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Solar Power Systems

More and more people are becoming aware of the need to find renewable ways to generate electricity, photovoltaic generated electricity has gained popularity due to it's ability to be environmentally friendly and an excellent supply of renewable electrical power. PV solar power systems are an obvious option for those that are in search of an alternative supply of electrical energy.

Sun powered solutions create electricity silently and with out any moving parts. Sunlight is collected inside the solar panels to create DC electrical power. That DC energy is converted into AC electrical power for residential use by the inverter. The AC power is fed into your electrical meter and circuit breaker panel. The power then goes either to your appliances and lights, or is fed back again in to the grid, or both.

You will discover two types of solar power systems: off-grid and grid- interconnected. Off-grid photovoltaic electric systems have no connection to the electric power utility grid and use batteries to supply your home when conditions are not favorable for solar energy supplies alone, for instance, on a cloudy day or during adverse climate situations.

Grid-interconnected designs connect the PV electric powered plan to the utility grid. This means that when there isn't sufficient sunlight to power your home, it is drawn from the grid. When a surplus of solar power is produced, the excess is fed back in to the utility grid to become utilized by other buyers.

Grid-interconnected solutions are less complex, they tend to be simpler to install and much less expensive simply because they do not demand batteries. Off-grid PV heating tools are usually applied where there is no existing electrical service and by those who wish to have complete independence from the grid.

A drawback of off-grid devices is the inefficiencies of charging and discharging the batteries. They tend to be much less efficient than grid-interconnected techniques.

If you are on the grid the utility business stores the energy for you. The utility firm keeps track of the electrical power you employ on an hourly basis. On a sunny day you can develop additional energy than you might be making use of, so you can build up credits. Ideally, the aim of one's PV electric platform is to supply a lot more than you use and end up with a rebate from your supplier.

At night or during cloudy days, the photovoltaic system's output is reduced or even stopped. Your house will then gets it is electricity from the utility grid. As you will be constantly linked towards the grid you'll have as much power as you need, when you need it, regardless of how much electricity your home solar power systems have managed to generate. If your solution produces an excess of power your meter will spin backwards, counting down your electrical bill.

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