How Solar Works
How Does Solar Panels Works?
Solar Electricity is one big circuit. By utilizing the natural energy of the Sun and pairing it with inherently conductive materials we are able to harness and use it to power our everyday life.
Stage 1: Sunlight
We’ve all been burned by the Sun’s energy a time or two. Materials like crystal and silicon are very efficient absorbers of this energy — a property known as “the photoelectric effect” that allows them to absorb photons of light and release electrons.
Stage 2: Solar Cells
For most of us, this next step is “magic.” A solar cell is a thin semi-conductor wafer: It’s positive on one side and negative on the other with electrical conductors attached to either side — forming a circuit. The circuit then captures the released electrons in the form of an electric current.
Stage 3: Photovoltaic Module
A module is a collection of cells that are connected to one another to create a larger circuit that’s then mounted into a frame. These modules are designed to supply electricity at a certain voltage, such as a common 12 or 24 volt system. The solar power produced is directly dependent on how much light strikes the modules.
Stage 4: Creating Usable Solar Power
Photovoltaic panels produce direct-current (DC) electricity, but most of us need AC (alternating current) to power our everyday gadgets and lights. An inverter is therefore required to covert DC to AC. Once set up, a solar system can cleanly power something as small as a single light bulb or as large as a house.
Stage 5: Sell It Back
Your energy consumption is probably slightly different than your neighbors. Most people see anywhere from 50% to 90% savings on their energy bill each month. Some people don’t even use all of the energy their system brings in; excess energy is pumped back to your local energy provider.
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