The sun is the greatest source of energy, and you can benefit by utilising its resources. You are probably wondering how solar panels are able to use sunlight to supply your home's electricity needs. Your solar panel uses photons to create solar electricity. Here is a breakdown of how solar energy is generated.
Solar Panels Collect Sunlight
Solar panels have photovoltaic cells. These PV cells collect light and turn it into solar energy. The moment sunlight hits your solar panels, these cells start to work and produce direct current electricity. PV cells are made of two semi-conducting materials, mainly silicon. The cells need to form an electric field. The same way as magnetic fields, an electric field is generated when opposite sides are separated. The silicon in the cells provides positive and negative electric charges.
However, PV cells are not the only elements responsible for converting sunlight to energy. Panels have inverters that convert DC electricity produced by the panels into alternating current. Some panels come with single inverters for the whole system while others come with a micro-inverter that is positioned behind the panel.
Solar Energy in the House
When electricity is converted by the PV cells and inverters, it passes through your meter and powers your electrical appliances. However, if the panels do not generate enough energy for all your electricity requirements, you still use power from the traditional power suppliers through the grid. Therefore, you can automatically switch to the grid for more energy.
Solar Energy Measured by a Net Meter
In many cases, you need to reach a net metering agreement with the local utility company that provides you with energy. In this agreement, the company will agree to give you energy credits for the extra solar power you generate if you send it to the grid. This is how you are able to tap into the grid automatically when your panels do not generate enough power. Some companies will even send you a check if your energy credits are too high. The power company will install a net meter in your home to measure electricity directed to and from the power grid.
Summing It Up
The benefits of solar energy range from being environmentally friendly to being less costly when compared to other forms of energy. Many people fear what they do not understand, and that is why they fail to invest in solar panels. However, understanding how solar panels work is one step towards appreciating this incredible source of renewable energy.
Contact a supplier of solar panels to learn more.