DIY Solar Power

Do it Yourself Residential Solar Energy

Your Introduction to Home Energy Systems

Home energy systems primarily are associated with the sun. The most popular residential energy system is the conversion of solar energy for electricity or water heating. There are two main types of solar energy, light and thermal. Light energy, from the sun, is harnessed by a collecting medium then transformed into electricity. Thermal energy, which is derived from the heat of the sun, is used to directly warm household water and swimming pools.

A typical home energy system has four components:

1. Photovoltaic Cells – Photovoltaic or solar cells made of a semiconductor material in which sunlight is converted into electricity through excitation of electrons. These cells require protection from various environmental and mechanical elements; thus, they are encased in photovoltaic modules or panels. These modules come in different sizes, weights, and shapes.

2. Inverter – An inverter transforms direct current into alternative current electricity.

3. Mounting System – A sturdy mounting system is imperative to secure your home energy systems atop a variety of surfaces from tiled roofs to the shiny exterior of a yacht.

4. Energy Storage – Batteries are optional as they served as storage for electricity produced.

Home energy systems also use semiconductor materials. The commonly used semiconductor materials in the manufacture of solar cells are:

1. Mono-Crystalline – Mono-crystalline silicon is made by the use of a crystal microtome that thinly slices the material into 150 – 350 microns thickness.

2. Using Multi-Crystalline Silicon – Multi-crystalline silicon is made by sawing into a block of silicon.

3. Using Amorphous Silicon – Amorphous silicon is produced when a thin layer of the material is placed on a substrate to make a photovoltaic module.

4. This thin film has a width of 1/10 micron, the flimsiest material to be used in solar cells.

The advantages and benefits of home energy systems are definitely extensive. Among such perks are the following:

1. There is relatively fast turnabout of capital investment now considering that solar power companies offer a minimum of a 20-year warranty and solar units can last a lifetime with proper use and care.

2. Since you are making your own electricity, you are no longer influenced by price hikes of electrical providers. You now have full reigns on the amount of electricity you can generate with your home energy system.

3. It’s tax-free. There are no taxes yet levied by the government when you harness solar radiation. You are entitled to as much sunlight as your system can get.

4. Home energy systems have low maintenance costs compared to electrical connections with their many wirings and cables.

5. Many governments actually offer incentives for people to switch to home energy systems as part of their environmentalist movement.

6. It is environment-friendly. Unlike renewable energy, solar power does not emit polluting emissions and harmful greenhouse gases such as carbon and methane. Accidental dredging and spillage seen in fossil fuel production is also not possible with solar power.

7. With home energy, there are no dangerous ecological by-products made during solar power production.

8. Using home energy helps the environment. You set a good example for your neighbors to hopefully emulate. When you use solar power energy, you actually help conserve other depleting natural energy sources like petroleum and coal for future generation use.

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