Residential solar pv

Solar PV systems convert the light of the sun (not the heat of the sun) into electrical power that we can use to power our electrical appliances. PV stands for PhotoVoltaic which comes from the Greek word photos meaning light and volt which is a measurement of electricity.

Solar panels were originally developed to power satellites in space, but advances in solar panel technology have made it possible to use this mechanism of power generation in our homes and work places.

A Solar PV system consists of several components working together:

  • Solar panels to absorb and directly convert sunlight into electricity – direct current (or DC)
  • A solar inverter to change the electrical current from direct current (or DC) to alternating current (or AC) – required as most of our appliances run off AC current
  • Mounting (typically on a roof)
  • Cabling

Solar PV systems range from small, rooftop-mounted systems that supply some power to an individual household, to large utility-scale power stations. Solar PV systems are usually connected to the electrical grid (grid-tied systems) but it is possible to create off-grid systems whereby batteries store the solar-generated electricity. Blue Sky Solar install both small to medium grid-tied systems as well as larger off-grid systems.

How do solar panels work?

  1. Solar panels are frames made up of solar (PV) cells (semi-conducting material which are layers of silicon)
  2. When exposed to sunlight the silicon causes electrons in the materials’ atoms to be knocked loose
  3. The electrons that are knocked loose then flow through the material to produce an electric current known as a direct current (DC)
  4. The direct current is carried through wiring to an electrical device called an inverter which converts the current to alternating current (AC)
  5. It can be connected to your property’s main electricity distribution board to be used within the home, or workplace.

Leave a Reply