Sun is a natural reactor when it comes to nuclear energy. It releases small packets of energy known as photons that travel far enough from the Sun to Earth, almost up to 9.3 million miles in about 8.5 minutes. These photons have a significant impact on the Earth to produce solar energy every hour to meet the requirements of the global energy of the entire Earth. As per the survey conducted in the year 2017 by the International Energy Agency, it has been witnessed that solar energy is becoming the world’s fastest-growing energy and it has outstripped other forms of fuels as an energy source.
Working Mechanism of Solar Panel
The Solar Panels have Photovoltaic modules that absorb the photon when they hit the solar cell and release the electrons from the atoms. The electric circuit is formed when conductors are attached with both positive and negative sides, and through these circuits, the electrons travel to generate electricity. Typically these cells absorb the sunlight to produce direct current electricity. However, in such cases, an extensive area is more feasible to get proper access to the Sun’s energy, and thus the semiconductors are either made flat, thin, or crystalline cells or deposited on a fine continuous layer of supporting material like glass.
These cells are wired together and sealed to create a waterproof module with the addition of electrical connectors. The DC output from the module has to be transformed into the AC at the correct voltage and frequency in order to contribute energy into the main electrical system. An electrical inverter is also installed for this purpose. The PV modules are mostly connected in series that provide higher voltage DC output to the inverter inputs, and sometimes these strings are connected in parallel so that an individual inverter can be utilized for 50 or more modules.
The primary function of the solar inverter is to take the DC output from the solar panels or arrays and convert them into the AC output. Apart from the inverting function of DC to AC, they give ground fault protection and system statistics including, maximum power point tracking, energy production and current and voltage on DC and AC circuits. Central Inverters are the brain of the Solar Panel, and they have been ruling the industry since the inception days. Though, with a shift in times, the PV industry has also seen the introduction of a significant technology called the micro-inverters. There is a vast contrast in the performance of a central inverter compared to that of a microinverter. In a central inverter, if one of the solar panels faces an issue, it drags down the overall performance of the solar array, while in micro-inverters even if one solar panel doesn’t function properly, it has the ability to withdraw energy from the other panels. It only optimizes the power of the single solar panel, like the central inverter but allows every solar panel to perform at its utmost potential.
Solar Panel Output
The output generated by the PV modules depends upon several factors like the angle of the Sun to the relative panel, weather conditions, and other things like whether the panel is free from dust and bird droppings. The solar panel still has a capacity of generating good power even when the conditions are not ideal. The Watt-Peak Ratings (Wp) specify the PV modules, which is power generated at solar radiation level 1000W/m2 and a temperature of 25 Degree Celsius but this is just an estimation, and you should read more about the calculation formula here.
FAQs about solar panels
What are solar panels comprised of?
Photovoltaic modules of solar panels are made up of several solar cells. Solar Cells have semiconductors like silicon. There are both positive and negative layers that create the electric fields just like a battery.
Do solar panels function on a cloudy day?
There is a myth that solar panels do not operate on a cloudy day. This claim is entirely false, as, on a cloudy day, the performance may not be at its best, but still it has the power to generate around 20-25% of energy. The performance of these solar panels depends upon the temperature, which is 25 Degree Celsius, and if the temperature increases beyond this, then there might be a degradation in the production. Sunlight is just a part of the story; there are certain other factors which in totality determines the actual performance of the solar panels.
Do solar panels generate electricity at night?
Darkness is a curse on the solar panels. At night these panels cannot generate any electricity. The confusion mainly arises due to the concept of solar storage. Basically, by having this feature, one can utilize solar energy at night as well. One can still get access to solar electricity at night through technologies like net-metering and solar plus storage by either having a connection to the battery or the electricity grid.
What is a net metering system in a solar panel?
If anyone installs a PV tied grid system, it has the capacity to produce excess electricity during the peak hours of daylight than an average customer requires. The surplus amount is driven back to the grid, and the customers achieve credit for it and from this credit generated, they can use it either during the night or cloudy days to meet their energy requirements. This credit can be detected when you install a net-metering system at your house.
What is a solar plus storage?
A solar plus storage is a battery system that is joined to a solar panel like a photovoltaic cell and gets charged through it. It is mainly used to meet the electric consumption at night or any crisis like a power outage event.
Should I install a solar energy system?
We highly recommend checking the possibility of solar system installation for your house or commercial place. You can read more about the advantages of Solar energy in our blog.