How Do Solar Panel Systems Work?
Considered switching to solar energy before? Solar energy is vied for its cost-efficiency and reduced carbon footprint. As it rises in popularity among homeowners and corporates alike, understand how solar panel systems work before you make the switch.
Solar systems are the key to our sustainable future. By harnessing the power of the sun, we can reduce global warming while relying on a natural energy source instead of the harmful ones that have got us into this climate crisis mess. Plus our electricity bills will also be much cheaper, so we save money and the planet at the same time.
But how does solar energy work? It’s simple really. The Earth intercepts about 173,000 terawatts of power from the sun – that’s more than 10,000 times the amount the current world population uses. But, as Alexandre Edmond Becquerel discovered in 1839, all that power can actually be intercepted and utilised as electricity with a little help from the photoelectric effect.
Solar panels are made out of photovoltaic cells that absorb sunlight and convert it into energy, which is then sent on to your home’s electric panel to create power. We’ll break it down step by step:
- Home solar panels in Singapore absorb energy from the sun using the photoelectric effect
- That energy is converted into Direct Current (DC) electricity and travels to an inverter in your electrical system
- The inverter converts the DC electricity from your solar system into Alternating Current (AC) electricity that can be used to power your home and appliances
- Any spare energy not used in your home will be fed back into the electric grid or you can sell it
Why are solar panels encouraged?
According to the Solar Energy Industry Association (SEIA), the solar industry has been growing by 50 per cent every year. That’s a rapid rise for a new energy source and some experts even predict that solar could grow by 6500 per cent by 2050. Singapore in particular has been a leader in the adoption of home solar panels. Having recently met their 2020 target of deploying 350MW of solar capacity, Singapore’s solar companies understand the importance and benefits of clean energy and can offer experienced installation services.
If you’re not quite sure what the positives are, we can tell you a few:
- Save money: You’ll be generating your own electricity with your home solar panels, which means you’ll be using energy from the national grid far less and your bills will go down. Another bonus is that any extra energy you produce can be sold on. So you can not only save money with solar panels but make it too.
- Save the planet: Solar systems are a key part of the renewable energy industry. Unlike conventional energy sources like fossil fuels, solar energy doesn’t contribute to global warming so you can be assured that you’re doing the right thing by the earth.
- Low maintenance and long-lasting: Solar panels only need to be cleaned a few times a year and can last for up to 25 years. That’s right, a quarter of a lifetime. Reliable solar companies in Singapore use the latest solar PV technology to ensure your solar system is durable and worth the investment. Find out more about the benefits of Singapore solar energy.
The mechanics of using solar energy panels
We've explained the basics of how solar systems work, but for those that like to be in the know here are the juicy details. As we've already mentioned solar panels use the photoelectric effect to absorb sunlight and create energy. But how does that actually happen? Well, it all comes down to what they're made of.
Every solar panel consists of dozens of photovoltaic cells. These cells allow particles of light, photons, to be set in motion by generating a flow of electricity. This is achieved when photovoltaic cells are sandwiched between conducting materials like silicon. When particles of light interact with the surrounding conducting material it creates an encased electric field that prompts the photons to come loose. Metal conductive plates collect these loose photons and transfer them onto wires that allow them to flow like traditional energy sources. That's the photovoltaic effect.
Should I switch to using solar panels systems?
The cost of producing solar panels has dropped drastically over the past decade so solar systems are more affordable than ever before. This is because rapid technological advances have allowed scientists to make the photovoltaic cells more efficient. Also, the more experienced solar companies in Singapore become, the better and faster the manufacturing processes become too.
Without such a large price barrier, switching to cleaner energy has become an affordable investment for your future. Although upfront costs can still be a little expensive, installing home solar panels will save you money in the long run by lowering your overall lifetime electricity costs. If you're not sure what the right decision is for you, the best option is to speak with an expert. SolarPVExchange is one of Singapore's most trusted solar companies. Every staff member is well versed in producing and installing solar panels for home and office use. Get in contact with a professional today.