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About Solar Energy
Solar power is energy from the sun that is transformed into thermal or electrical energy.
Solar energy is the cleanest and most abundant renewable resource source available, and the United States has some of the richest solar resources worldwide. Modern innovation can harness this energy for a variety of usages, consisting of producing electricity, supplying light or a comfortable interior environment, and heating water for domestic, commercial, or industrial usage.
Solar power makes it possible for property owner to use the sun to power daily life: running your air conditioner, washing clothing, viewing TELEVISION, cooking dinner. All while decreasing your carbon footprint, and without burning fossil fuels or putting a strain on the electrical grid. And while the ecological benefits of solar power are significant, numerous homeowners find that the convenience, distinct functions, and cost savings of owning a solar power system are a lot more alluring.
Top Ten Advantages of Solar Energy
#1 Drastically minimize or perhaps eliminate your electrical expenses
Whether you're a property owner, business, or not-for-profit, electrical power expenses can comprise a large portion of your month-to-month costs. With a photovoltaic panel system, you'll produce totally free power for your system's whole 25+ year lifecycle. Even if you don't produce One Hundred Percent of the energy you take in, solar will lower your utility costs and you'll still save a great deal of loan.
#2 Make a terrific return on your investment
Photovoltaic panels aren't an expenditure-- they're one of the very best methods to invest, with returns rivaling those of more standard financial investments like stocks and bonds. Thanks to considerable electrical power costs savings, the average American house owner settles their photovoltaic panel system in seven to eight years and sees an ROI of 20 percent or more.
#3 Secure against rising energy expenses
One of the most clear cut advantages of photovoltaic panels is the ability to hedge energy rates. In the previous ten years, residential electrical power rates have actually increased by approximately three percent annually. By buying a solar energy system now, you can repair your electricity rate and safeguard versus unforeseeable boosts in electricity costs. If you're an organisation or homeowner with fluctuating cash flow, going solar also helps you much better projection and handle your expenses.
#4 Increase your residential or commercial property value
Several research studies have found that houses equipped with solar energy systems have higher residential or commercial property worths and offer faster than non-solar homes. Appraisers are progressively taking solar setups into consideration as they value houses at the time of a sale, and as property buyers end up being more educated about solar, need for homes equipped with photovoltaic panel systems will continue to grow.
#5 Increase U.S. energy independence
The sun is a near-infinite source of energy and a key component of achieving energy independence in the United States. By increasing our capacity to produce electricity from the sun, we can likewise insulate our country from cost fluctuations in worldwide energy markets.
#6 Create jobs and assist your local economy
According to The Solar Foundation, the solar industry included jobs at a rate nearly 12 times faster than the overall U.S. economy in 2015, representing 1.2 percent of all tasks in the nation. This growth is expected to continue. Because solar-related tasks have the tendency to be greater paying and can not be contracted out, they are a considerable contributor to the United States economy.
#7 Protect the environment
Solar is a fantastic way to decrease your carbon footprint. Buildings are accountable for 38 percent of all carbon emissions in the United States, and going solar can significantly reduce that number. A typical domestic photovoltaic panel system will get rid of three to 4 lots of carbon emissions each year-- the equivalent of planting over 100 trees annually.
#8 Show your commitment to sustainability
Sustainability and corporate social obligation are necessary elements of a company's culture and values. They also produce bottom line results. Significantly, customers and communities are acknowledging and rewarding companies that opt to operate properly. Services are discovering that "green" credentials are an effective motorist of consumer buying choices, developing goodwill and improving service outcomes.
#9 Start Saving from Day 1
Solar purchase power arrangements (PPAs) and solar leasing has made it possible for homeowners to go solar for little or no cash down.
Lots of property owners opt to fund their solar panels with among the "pay-as-you-go" financing alternatives. This suggests that a third-party company-- the solar company-- owns the planetary system and looks after setup, upkeep, tracking and repair works. You simply pay the solar service provider for electricity-- less than you would've paid the energy business.
As of June 2013, 75% of all American houses have access to pay-as-you-go solar.
#10. Solar is a Secure Investment
The energy companies are notorious for their changing and undependable electrical energy costs. There is plainly an upward trend.
With photovoltaic panels and easy mathematics, we can determine how much electrical energy will be created, and most importantly, at what price, for at least the next Twenty Years (fixed energy costs).
What are the various payment options?
We have many flexible purchasing agreements for customers who would like to install a new home solar system. There are three different payment options, making them a viable choice for customers of all budgets. The payment options include Lease, PPA, and Purchase.
- Low, fixed payments each month
- System insurance for 20 years, including maintenance
- Flexible end-of-term options, including system upgrade, lease extension, and free panel removal
Power Purchase Agreement (PPA)
- We own the solar panel system
- $0 down for installation
- Customers only pay for the solar energy that they use
- Customer pays for the system upfront and owns the system
- System monitoring and maintenance for 20 years
- Receive 30% federal tax credit
- See a return on investment within 7-10 years
What happens when the contract for my lease is finished?
We provide our customers with a few different options for when their lease contract is up. Customers can upgrade their equipment to the newest solar technology available, extend the agreement, or have the panels removed at no cost.
What is the warranty?
The Lease and PPA include a 20-year warranty during the lifetime of the system. This warranty exceeds that of most other solar installers’ warranties.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I Find A Led Lights That Works On About 30-40 Microamps? Its For A Retro Solar Panel.?
Its For A Solar Panel With Really Low Voltage That Can Only Produce About 30 To On A Sunny Day 50 Micro Amps. Im Looking For A Led Light That Would Prove That Is Working Besides An Amp Meter.
Lowest you are going to find is 1-2 mA.
You may be able to use a capacitor discharge method, and there may be IC's that do that. That is, you store charge in a cap and use that to blink the LED every few seconds.
here is a circuit i found.
What Would Be A Good Battery For This Solar Panel?
I Know Absolutely Nothing About Electronics But Have A Lot Of Money. I Am Thinking Of Buying The Sunforce 37130 130W Monocrystalline Solar Panel (The Best I Could Find That Was That Size Or Smaller). What Would Be A Good Battery To Go With It? I Am Thinking Of Buying A 12V Concorde Sun Xtender (Again, The Best I Could Find). But How Many Batteries Will I Need? I Want Enough Batteries That It Would Take The Solar Panel 2 Days To Completely Charge Them From Empty (Bearing In Mind The Unavoidable Inefficiencies Like Cloudiness/Changing Sun Angles). Also, What Other Stuff Would I Need, Like I Hear Something About A &Quot;Charge Controller&Quot;? Any Suggestions Would Be Appreciated.
>Also, what other stuff would I need, like I hear something about a "charge controller"?
You want a charge controller to get the most energy out of the panel and to keep from cooking the battery. Take a look at this one: http://www.amazon.com/Sunforce-60032-Dig...
>I want enough batteries that it would take the solar panel 2 days to completely charge them from empty (bearing in mind the unavoidable inefficiencies like cloudiness/changing sun angles).
So what are the solar conditions at your location?
Anyway, here is a back of an envelope calculation.
Best case (like New Mexico in July) the panel will put out about 1 kWH in two days). So you need a deep cycle 12 volt battery with about 1 kWH storage; this will weight about 65 lbs and have about 100 amp-hr of capacity.
So something like this: http://stores.mavericksolar.com/-strse-2...
If you are at a location/time where the panel will put out less power, you can adjust the battery size accordingly. And running a battery to "empty" is very bad for it's service life, so it's better to go a bit bigger.
How Can I Use Solar Power In A Cheap Way? Can I Plug My Laptop Into A Solar Panel?
I Want To Buy Something Cheap That I Can Use As Just A Regular Plug. I'D Like To Be Able To Plug Anything Into It (Microwave, Cell Phone Charger, Lap Top, Etc.). I'Ve Seen Many Solar Chargers But They Are Only Compatible With Usb Or With Specific Models Of Phones. Is There A Solar Panel That I Can Just Plug A 2 Or 3 Prong Plug Into? Thanks!
I Know Nothing About Electricity, So I'M Not Going To Be Able To Wire Anything, So That Kind Of Stuff Is Out Of The Question. I Don'T Want To Run My House On Solar Power, But Maybe Something Smaller.
Let me start off by saying we (my family and I) live completely, 100% “off of the grid and are completely self sufficient”
The house is built utilizing natures natural elements, in the shape of an octagon with 8ft wide arch doors on every wall to catch every angle of wind (typical 4 sided homes have half the chance as one with 8 sides. A circle being the most efficient design). Woodburning stoves, solar chimney, solar AC, solar heating, solar water heating (pool and home), solar stove, solar power, wind power, hydrogen powered back up generator, hydrogen back up water heater, hydrogen stove, 2 hydrogen powered trucks, 1 EV (electric vehicle) and satellite internet.
There are no utility lines, no water lines, no roads, tv, cell service, etc. on our ranch. EVERYTHING needed is produced here. All electricity comes from 27 solar panels, 2 main wind gens and a back hydrogen generator if needed (typically we can last 9 days with all luxuries of sunless windless weather, hasn't happened yet). Water is caught and storaged from the rain. Hot water is made with solar batch water heaters with an on-demand hydrogen hot water heater as backup. Even our vehicles use alternative energy (2 hydrogen trucks, 1 EV electric vehicle converted). Because of this we have no bills, no debt and no mortgage.
The fallowing steps were taking directly out of a DIY guide I offer to those who would like to run their homes on solar power safely, reducing their monthly utility bills or even selling power back the the electrical companies. The entire guide is available at www agua-luna com. Its pretty simple but if you have any problems feel free to contact me directly I can walk you threw the process.
Materials you will need
A sheet of copper flashing from the hardware store. This normally costs about $5.00 per square foot. We will need about half a square foot.
Two alligator clip leads.
A sensitive micro-ammeter that can read currents between 10 and 50 microamperes. Radio Shack sells small LCD multimeters that will do, but I used a small surplus meter with a needle.
An electric stove. My kitchen stove is gas, so I bought a small one-burner electric hotplate for about $25. The little 700 watt burners probably won't work -- mine is 1100 watts, so the burner gets red hot.
A large clear plastic bottle off of which you can cut the top. I used a 2 liter spring water bottle. A large mouth glass jar will also work.
Table salt. We will want a couple tablespoons of salt.
Sand paper or a wire brush on an electric drill.
Sheet metal shears for cutting the copper sheet.
The first step is to cut a piece of the copper sheeting that is about the size of the burner on the stove. Wash your hands so they don't have any grease or oil on them. Then wash the copper sheet with soap or cleanser to get any oil or grease off of it. Use the sandpaper or wire brush to thoroughly clean the copper sheeting, so that any sulphide or other light corrosion is removed.
Next, place the cleaned and dried copper sheet on the burner and turn the burner to its highest setting.
As the copper starts to heat up, you will see beautiful oxidation patterns begin to form. Oranges, purples, and reds will cover the copper.
As the copper gets hotter, the colors are replaced with a black coating of cupric oxide. This is not the oxide we want, but it will flake off later, showing the reds, oranges, pinks, and purples of the cuprous oxide layer underneath.
The last bits of color disappear as the burner starts to glow red.
When the burner is glowing red-hot, the sheet of copper will be coated with a black cupric oxide coat. Let it cook for a half an hour, so the black coating will be thick. This is important, since a thick coating will flake off nicely, while a thin coat will stay stuck to the copper.
After the half hour of cooking, turn off the burner. Leave the hot copper on the burner to cool slowly. If you cool it too quickly, the black oxide will stay stuck to the copper.
As the copper cools, it shrinks. The black cupric oxide also shrinks. But they shrink at different rates, which makes the black cupric oxide flake off.
The little black flakes pop off the copper with enough force to make them fly a few inches. This means a little more cleaning effort around the stove, but it is fun to watch.
When the copper has cooled to room temperature (this takes about 20 minutes), most of the black oxide will be gone. A light scrubbing with your hands under running water will remove most of the small bits. Resist the temptation to remove all of the black spots by hard scrubbing or by flexing the soft copper. This might damage the delicate red cuprous oxide layer we need to make to solar cell work.
Cut another sheet of copper about the same size as the first one. Bend both pieces gently, so they will fit into the plastic bottle or jar without touching one another. The cuprous oxide coating that was facing up on the burner is usually the best side to face outwards in the jar, because it has the smoothest, cleanest surface.
Attach the two alligator clip leads, one to the new copper plate, and one to the cuprous oxide coated plate. Connect the lead from the clean copper plate to the positive terminal of the meter. Connect the lead from the cuprous oxide plate to the negative terminal of the meter.
Now mix a couple tablespoons of salt into some hot tap water. Stir the saltwater until all the salt is dissolved. Then carefully pour the saltwater into the jar, being careful not to get the clip leads wet. The saltwater should not completely cover the plates -- you should leave about an inch of plate above the water, so you can move the solar cell around without getting the clip leads wet.
now place in the sun with the magnefied on top.
The solar cell is a battery, even in the dark, and will usually show a few microamps of current.
That’s it it’s that simple. If you’d a more detailed process and some pics (ouldn’t put them here) it’s available along with some other DIY alternative energy projects at www agua-luna com
Hope this helped, feel free to contact me personally if you have any questions if you’d like assistance in making your first self sufficient steps, I’m willing to walk you step by step threw the process. I’ve written several how-to DIY guides available at www agua-luna com on the subject. I also offer online and on-site workshops, seminars and internships to help others help the environment.
Alterative Energy / Sustainable Consultant, Living 100% on Alternative & Author of How One Simple Yet Incredibly Powerful Resource Is Transforming The Lives of Regular People From All Over The World... Instantly Elevating Their Income & Lowering Their Debt, While Saving The Environment by Using FREE ENERGY... All With Just One Click of A Mouse...For more info Visit:
www AGUA-LUNA com
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Solar Panel Sun Tracker?
I Recently Built My Own, Working Solar Panel. I'D Rather Keep It Pointed At The Sun 12/7 Without Having To Move It, But How Would I Go About Building A &Quot;Sun Tracker&Quot; That Would Keep My Solar Panel Pointed At The Sun?
So, the method came up with is to have a database on a flash drive which has a years worth of sun position data at 15min increments during daylight hours. All the arduino would need to do is look up the Azimuth and Altitude angles which correspond to the current date and time, then move the servos accordingly.
Something to keep in mind is that while it may be cheaper than the more hardware-based route (you can make a solar tracker without using -any- electronics or other electrical devices, btw), your time and "money" will be spent in the coding. It would seem to be a good learning experience no matter what.
What Solar Panel Efficiency Would Replace Coal?
A Friend Sent Me An Article That A Company Called Fraunhofer Has Produced Solar Panels That Can Achieve 41.1% Efficiency.
Now Taking Into Account The Fact That Solar Do Sent Work During Storms Or Night And Greatly Reduced During Winters, What % Do You Think Would Be Needed To Supply A &Quot;Majority&Quot; Of Our Power Needs As A Nation?
I'm with g.aidono. The efficiency of the panel is not the issue, it's the cost.
I believe photovoltaic panels are hovering at around 14% efficiency right now - when you see high numbers like 41%, that's an exotic cell, and not in a sturdy glass and metal frame suitable for domestic use. But even at 14%, if they cost $2 / watt, they would be a cost winner in a majority of US homes. Even at $4 / watt today, they are a winner in some places, such as supplying the last few, very expensive kWh's on someone's bill. If panels got to $1 / watt, even without any subsidies, people would be clamoring to connect panels - so many, in fact, that it would threaten the stability of the grid, and new architectures would be necessary.