Understanding How Solar Panels Works

By: | May 10th, 2021

Image by andreas160578 from Pixabay

Did you know that the amount of sunlight striking the surface of the earth in 1.5 hours can handle the whole world’s energy consumption for a year? It is a shame that many people do not take advantage of this powerful energy. It would be a great way to reduce dependence on non-renewable sources of electricity, fight climate change, and reduce air pollution.

Solar technologies can use photovoltaic panels to make electricity from sunlight. They may also use mirrors that concentrate solar radiation. The electricity can also be used for thermal storage or stored in batteries. Even though the functioning of solar panels may seem complicated, it comes down to the ability of matter to discharge electrons after being bathed in light.

How Solar Panels Convert Sunlight Into Electricity

  • Activating the Panels

The first step of the process is for sunlight to activate the solar panels. Each panel is made with a metal frame, a layer of silicon cells, and glass casing. The panels are placed into arrays before being installed on rooftops or outdoor spaces. Solar cells, also known as photovoltaic cells, absorb sunlight.

  • The Production of Electrical Current

Every solar cell has a thin semiconductor wafer. It comprises two silicon layers. One is negatively charged and the other one is positively charged. Together, they form an electric field. When a photovoltaic solar cell is struck by the sun, it is energized. The electrons loosen from atoms in the semiconductor wafer. The now loose electrons start moving and their motion makes an electrical current.

  • The Conversion of Electrical Energy

After transforming sunlight into electricity, it is time to transform the direct current (DC) into alternating current (AC electricity). It is the type of electricity that powers most homes. The team at ArtisanElectricInc.com advises that you buy modern solar panels. They come fitted with inverters or microinverters that convert DC into AC electricity.

  • Powering Your Home

Once solar energy is converted into AC electricity, it is passed through an electrical panel and distributed to various parts of your home. You can use it for lighting and powering appliances. Solar energy works just like electrical power from utility companies.

  • Measuring Usage

Consider using a net meter to measure the consumption of electricity in your home. When it is dark or cloudy outside, your panels may not capture enough sunlight to power your home. Similarly, you may collect surplus energy on some days.

Therefore, having a meter to measure the flow of electricity to and from your house is a great idea. Your utility company will be thrilled if you send excess power back to their grid. 

In conclusion, solar energy has evolved over the years. It captures and uses the vast power of the sun to power your home. Even though its functioning isn’t rocket science, it is a great testament to human ingenuity. There are lots of reasons to take advantage of solar energy. They include cutting the costs of your electric bill, lowering your carbon footprint, and supplementing the power you get from the grid. Whatever your reasons, ensure that you get solar panels from reputable providers. The right ones will help you choose the best panels for your needs.


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