How Photovoltaic Solar Panels Work

[caption id="attachment_860" align="alignright" width="150"]Solar panel module The solar panel module[/caption]

Photovoltaic solar is a technology that uses semiconductor materials to directly convert sunlight into electricity. Photovoltaic systems use solar cells in the form of wafers, which are typically made of crystalline silicon. These wafers are sensitive to sunlight, and produce a small direct current when exposed to light. When the wafers are combined into large arrangements (called modules), these modules produce a great amount of electrical power. Each module generates electricity in the form of Direct Current (DC). The best part: there are no moving parts, no noise, and no emissions.

At Day One Solar, we design a variety of modules to meet your specific energy needs. We also install a device called an inverter, which converts DC into AC (Alternating Current) — the electricity standard used in your home or business. The system’s design also ensures that you remain “grid-tied”, meaning that you have seamless access to your electric utility’s power grid. This is important during the day and at night when your electricity usage exceeds the amount of electricity you are generating. Additionally, our solar panels have a lifetime of over 25 years, which allows for a reduced energy cost than that of the traditional fossil fuel-based power generation.

Now, a little about how the sun comes into play as our energy source.

The earth receives approximately 170 million gigawatts* of power from the sun. This is a tiny fraction of the sun’s total output, but a million times greater than the energy demands of Earth’s entire population. Adding solar panels to your roof or in a ground-mounted array means harnessing a completely clean energy source. Essentially, with solar, you have your own power plant. The electricity you generate is used where you need it, and when you need it. Solar is the single most significant step you can take to reduce your carbon footprint. The more photovoltaic solar systems we add, the fewer coal or oil fired power plants have to be built by utility companies to meet today’s ever-growing demand for electric power. The bottom line: solar is not just good for your bank account – it’s good for the planet.

It’s a Win-Win!

Fun Fact: While French Physicist Edmund Becquerel is credited with discovering the photovoltaic effect in 1839, the first practical photovoltaic solar cell was invented by Bell Laboratories in 1954 for use as a power source for remote telephone service stations.

*One gigawatt = one billion watts

Smarter Energy, from Day One.