COUNTRY LIVINGOFF GRIDSOLAR ENERGY
Can I connect an inverter to my solar panels without involving batteries? If yesthen how?Yes. There are two ways to use solar without batteries:1. Grid-Tied. This is connecting your solar panels directly to the electricity gridusing a DC-to-AC "grid-tied" inverter. The inverter converts the DC output of thesolar panels to AC electricity that is synchronized to the grid. In this case, thesolar is not directly powering your loads, but as long as your loads are connectedto the grid, the solar can offset your energy consumption2. Direct. You can connect your solar panels directly to a DC load (perhapsrequiring a voltage regulator, depending on your load). Or, you can connectpanels to a non-grid-tied DC-to-AC inverter, and drive an AC load directly. Inthese cases, you need a load that is "ok" with an intermittent power source. Ihave seen these approaches used with irrigation pumps, where you only getpumping when the sun is shining.The vast majority of solar installed globally is grid-tied, and without batteries.What is an intermittent power source?An intermittent energy source is any source of energy that is not continuouslyavailable for conversion into electricity and outside direct control because the usedprimary energy cannot be stored. Intermittent energy sources may be predictablebut cannot be dispatched to meet the demand of an electric power system.
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How to Install Solar Panels & Inverter for Home-Step by Step GuideSolar Inverter Setup1) Two 150 watts solar panels (Poly Crystalline PV Modules)
2) Luminous 300-600 [Kilo-Volt-Ampere] sine wave (battery) inverter
3) One 200 ah Exide Invertor Plus Battery
4) 24v, 40amps PWM [Pulse Width Modulation] Solar Charge ��—————–
Solar Cost Estimation300 WATTS Polycrystalline solar panels – 2 x 150 watts panelsHow to Buy Solar Panels?For our setup, we have 2 Nos of 150 watts (12v) panels2 x 150 watts panel 300 wattsTypes of Solar Panels available in marketThere are two types of solar cells available in market,Mono crystalline solar panels and Poly crystalline solar panelsMono crystalline is expensive and little more efficient than poly crystalline.Poly crystalline solar panels are affordable, widely available and best seller in market.
How To Use Solar InverterHere we are going to use normal sine wave inverter for our setup,Few Branded solar hybrid inverters are also available in market, they have inbuiltsolar charge controller, but they are too expensive and most solar technicians followthis method of using normal sine wave inverter with solar charge controller.What is Solar Charge Controller?The current we get from solar panels will not remain constant throughout the day, somany ups and downs will be there, so that we can not connect solar photo voltaicmodules directly to charge our battery, it will spoil our battery over time.
So, we need a device called solar charge controller to control the current wereceive from solar panels, the charge controller has inbuilt PWM (pulse widthmodulation) charger to charge the lead acid battery in three stages, which ensureslong life for battery.In this 300 watts solar setup, we will get 200 watts current for sure from solar panelsin day time which means 8 am to 5 pmWe can use the free current from PV modules during this day time by manuallyswitching off the Input to Inverter (power supply from grid), so that the inverterbattery will be charged with available solar power.While the battery is getting charge from solar panels, concurrently we can use thebattery power to power up our home.So, with solar power, the battery will be get charge and on the other side the batterywill deliver current to inverter for powering up our gadgets, this happenssimultaneously.
CautionAs we have only 300 watts solar panel setup, we should not use more than 200 wattspower from inverter during day time.We use 220 watts power during day time, then what happens to the excess 80 wattsof current generated by solar panels?The excess 80 watts will go directly in to your battery storage, not only that 80 watts,if you switch off the LVD TV for 5 hours in day time, that 80 watts used by LCD alsogoes to battery storage directly.So, you can use the excess current during night time, as you have heavy power cuteven at night time, we should limit our power usage to 200 watts/hr during day time,the excess 100 watts/hr will be stored in the battery. we can use it later duringnightime.
MOST IMPORTANT THING TO REMEMBER !In this whole setup, one thing you should remember isPoint No.1 – Manually switch off the Grid power supply to inverterevery morning 7 or 8 AM (according to the availability of sun light)Point No.2 – Manually switch on the Grid power supply to inverteron evening time, when sunlight goes off.
What is Solar Net Metering and How Does it WorkMany consumers who are thinking about going solar have heard the term “netmetering” but aren’t sure what it means.
What is Net Metering?Put simply, net metering is a utility billing mechanism available in most states thatoffers a credit to residential and business customers who are making excess electricitywith their solar panel systems and sending it back to the grid.How Does Net Metering Work?When you have a rooftop solar system, it can often generate more electricity than youconsume during daylight hours.With net metering, the homeowner is only billed for the “net” energy used each month,that is, the difference between the energy produced by the solar power system and theenergy consumed by the house over the monthly billing period.When your house or business is net-metered, you’ll see the meter run backwards, andthat means, depending upon local policies, you may get a credit to hedge against theelectricity you use from the grid when it’s not sunny or at nighttime. You are thenbilled only for your “net” energy use. The excess energy generated gets put back to thegrid for your neighbors to use. (Read about net metering for businesses on theSunPower Business Feed.)
The Benefits of Net MeteringNet metering can save homeowners hundreds of dollars on theirutility bills every year, so it’s a good reason to make the moneysaving choice and go solar sooner rather than later.There’s another benefit from net metering. Since your solarsystem is generating electricity near the point where it will beused, this reduces strain on the grid’s distribution andtransmission infrastructure and minimizes energy loss fromsending voltage many miles from the nearest power plant. Whilesome claim that net metering represents an unfair burden onnon-solar electricity customers, many net metering cost-benefitstudies have found the opposite to be true.
Pros and Cons of Monocrystalline vs Polycrystalline solar panelsPublished on 08/23/2017 by Andrew Sendy, updated on 03/06/2019Read time: 6 minutesWhat are the pros and cons of Monocrystalline, Polycrystalline and Thin Filmsolar panels?There are 3 types of technology utilized in the solar panels available on the markettoday, these are monocrystalline, polycrystalline, and thin film amorphous.As the names suggest Monocrystalline and Polycrystalline are both types of solar cellsthat are made from crystalline silicon. Almost all quotes you will get when consideringbuying solar panels for your home will use crystalline solar panels.2-3 years ago the most common type of solar panel used in residential solarinstallations in America were monocrystalline solar panels but in the last three yearspolycrystalline solar panels have become the most commonly used solar panels inresidential solar installations in America.These types of crystalline silicon solar panels are known in the industry as simply'Mono' or 'Poly' panels.
It is more important that you choose a good brand of solar panels. A good brand ofsolar panels is from a company that invests heavily in the quality of theirmanufacturing process and invests heavily in their reputation.The five best solar panels based on consumer reviews in 2019SolarReviews has a list of the top 20 solar panels in 2019 based on reviews by actualresidential solar panel owners. The top five based on customer ratings are:1. SunPower2. LG Solar3. SolarWorld Americas Inc.4. Canadian Solar5. Silfab
Both monocrystalline and polycrystalline solar cells arevery similar in performance. What really determines youroutcome in terms of system performance over the lifetimeof the solar panel is a lack of defects in the manufacturingprocess and having a company that will replace the panelsif their performance falls below the warranted levels.Thin film is a totally different technology. It is much lessefficient and therefore uses much more roof space. Its oneadvantage is that it performs better in low light conditions,when there is partial shading of the system or in extremeheat.
The key facts about each type of solar cell:MonocrystallineOverview and AppearanceThis is the oldest and most developed of the three technologies. Monocrystallinepanels as the name suggests are created from a single continuous crystal structure. AMonocrystalline panel can be identified from the solar cells which all appear as asingle flat color.
ConstructionThey are made through the Czochralski method where asilicon crystal ‘seed’ is placed in a vat of molten silicon.The seed is then slowly drawn up with the molten siliconforming a solid crystal structure around the seed knownas an ingot. The ingot of solid crystal silicon that is formedis then finely sliced ingot what is known as a silicon wafer.This is then made into a cell.The Czochralski process results in large cylindrical ingots.Four sides are cut out of the ingots to make silicon wafers.A significant amount of the original silicon ends up aswaste.
PolycrystallineOverview and AppearancePolycrystalline or Multicrystalline are a newer technology and vary in themanufacturing process.ConstructionPolycrystalline also start as a silicon crystal ‘seed’ placed in a vat of molten silicon.However, rather than draw the silicon crystal seed up as with Monocrystalline the vatof silicon is simply allowed to cool. This is what forms the distinctive edges and grainsin the solar cell.
Polycrystalline cells were previously thought to be inferior to Monocrystalline becausethey were slightly less efficient, however, because of the cheaper method by whichthey can be produced coupled with only slightly lower efficiencies they have becomethe dominant technology on the residential solar panels market.In November 2015 Trina Solar announced that it had produced a multi-crystalline cellwith efficiency of 21.25%. This should allow them to produce polycrystalline moduleswith efficiencies between 18-20% a concept that was thought impossible as recentlyas 2013.Underpinning the new record for p-type multicrystalline solar cells has been thecontinued quality improvements of multicrystalline wafers that have helped pushedstandard 60-cell multicrystalline panels from 240W to 260W in recent years.Polycrystalline are now very close to Monocrystalline cells in terms of cord
Thin FilmOverview and AppearanceThin film panels are a totally different technology to Mono and Polycrystalline panels.They are a new technology compared to Mono and Polycrystalline cells and would notbe considered a mature technology as vast improvements in this technology areexpected in the next 10 years.A thin film panel can be identified as having a solid black appearance. They may ormay not have a frame, if the panel has no frame it is a thin film panel.
ConstructionThin film panels are made by depositing a photovoltaic substance onto a solid surfacelike glass. The photovoltaic substance that is used varies and multiple combinationsof substances have successfully and commercially been used. Examples of the mostcommon photovoltaic substances used are: Amorphous Silicon Cadmium Telluride (CdTe) Copper indium gallium selenide (CGIS) Dye-sensitized solar cell (DSC)Each of the above are known as different panel 'types' but all fall under the umbrellaof being a Thin Film panel.PerformanceThin film cells have got a reputation as being the ‘worst’ of the solar paneltechnologies because they have the lowest efficiency. However, this is only becausethey have a lower power efficiency which only means they require the most space forthe same amount of power. Since they are becoming the cheapest panels to producebecause of the low material costs for thin film they are quickly becoming the moreeconomically efficient panel types.
Depending on the technology, thin-film module prototypes have reached efficienciesbetween 7–13% and production modules operate at about 9%. Future moduleefficiencies are expected to climb close to the about 10–16%.The market for thin-film PV grew at a 60% annual rate from 2002 to 2007. In 2011,close to 5% of U.S. photovoltaic module shipments to the residential sector werebased on thin-film.Advantages of Monocrystalline1. Monocrystalline solar panels have the highest efficiency rates since they aremade out of the highest-grade silicon. On October 2 2105, SolarCity announcedthat it has developed the world’s most efficient solar panels. The new panelsconvert more than 22% of sunlight into electricity.2. Just days later Panasonic announced it had trumped that achievement. APanasonic solar panel has established a new world record module conversionefficiency of 22.5% on a commercial sized prototype using solar cells based onmass production technology. The test results were confirmed by the renownedJapanese National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology. The72-cell, 270-watt prototype incorporates newly developed enhanced technologythat will eventually be scaled into volume production.
3. Panasonic also says it is introducing the HIT N330, the latest addition to thecompany's high-efficiency hetero-junction photovoltaic module product line andits most powerful photovoltaic module to date. It will be available in the UK andother European markets starting in March, 2016. Manufactured at Panasonic'sstate-of-the-art, vertically integrated solar fabrication facilities in Malaysia, HIT N330 features 19.7% module-level efficiency and a nominal power output of 330watts.4. Monocrystalline silicon solar panels are space-efficient. Since these solar panelsyield the highest power outputs, they also require the least amount of spacecompared to any other types. However, monocrystalline solar panels producemarginally more power per square foot of space used in an array and so.5. Monocrystalline Panels have a long lifespan. Most solar panel manufacturers puta 25-year warranty on their monocrystalline solar panels. Because both types ofcrystalline solar panels are made from crystalline silicon, a very inert and stablematerial it is very likely that these solar panels will last much longer then their25 year warranty life.
6. Monocrystalline solar panels tend to be more efficient in warm weather. With allsolar cells electricity production falls as temperature goes up. However, thisdegradation of output is less severe in monocrystalline panels thanpolycrystalline solar panels. However, in practice the difference is very small. Thelevel to which each solar panels production falls as temperature increase siscalled the temperature co-efficient and is published with the specifications foreach panel.This article is solely about different types of solar panels. If you want to learn aboutwhat other equipment a photovoltaic system consists off, go to Solar Power System.Disadvantages of Monocrystalline solar panels1. Monocrystalline solar panels are the most expensive. In recent years a rash ininstallation of polycrystalline ingot, cell and module production efficiencies havemean that polycrystalline solar panel have become more common and havebenefited from costs advantages over mono panels. Most manufacturers that stillmake mono panels have targeted the premium end of the market.
Advantages of Polycrystalline solar panels1. The process used to make polycrystalline silicon is simpler and cost less. Theamount of waste silicon is less compared to monocrystalline.2. Polycrystalline solar panels tend to have slightly lower heat tolerance thanmonocrystalline solar panels. Polycrystalline solar panels will tend to have ahigher temperature co-efficient than solar modules made with mono cells. Thismeans that as heat increased output for this type of cell will fall less. However, inpractice these differences are very minor.Disadvantages of Polycrystalline solar panels1. The efficiency of polycrystalline-based solar panels is typically 14-16%. Becauseof lower silicon purity, polycrystalline solar panels are not quite as efficient asmonocrystalline solar panels.2. Lower space-efficiency. You generally need to cover a larger surface to outputthe same electrical power as you would with a solar panel made ofmonocrystalline silicon. However, this does not mean every monocrystalline solarpanel perform better than those based on polycrystalline silicon.
3. Monocrystalline and thin-film solar panels tend to be more aesthetically pleasingsince they have a more uniform look compared to the speckled blue color ofpolycrystalline silicon.Advantages of Thin Film solar panels1. Mass-production is simple. This makes them and potentially cheaper tomanufacture than crystalline-based solar cells.2. Their homogeneous appearance makes them look more appealing.3. Can be made flexible, which opens up many new potential applications.4. High temperatures and shading have less impact on solar panel performance.5. In situations where space is not an issue, thin-film solar panels can make sense.Disadvantages of Thin Film solar panels1. Thin-film solar panels are in general not very useful for in most residentialsituations. They are cheap, but they also require a lot of space. SunPower'smonocrystalline solar panels produce up to four times the amount of electricityas thin-film solar panels for the same amount of space.
2. Low space-efficiency also means thatthe costs of PV-equipment (e.g. supportstructures and cables) will increase.3. Thin-film solar panels tend to e solar panels, which iswhy they typically come with a shorterwarranty.
The 3 Best Batteries ForAn Off-Grid Energy System
What are the best batteries for an off-grid energy system?Because of the falling prices of renewable energy systems, more and more people are looking touse alternative energy sources as a way to:Save moneyBecome more energy independentAnd break their dependence on the big energy companiesHowever, installing a renewable energy system, inmost cases, requires you to make a considerableinitial investment that you won’t get back for severalyears. One of the biggest expenses associated withalternative energy systems is the batteries in thebattery bank.
So choosing the correct batteries for your off-grid system is crucial (and keeping the batteriesalive as long as possible is also critically important)!What are the best batteries to use in your solar power,wind power, or other alternative energy system?1. Lead Acid-Batteries VS. Other Battery Technologies in a battery bank2. Deep Cycle vs. Shallow Cycle Batteries in a battery bank3. Flooded Lead-Acid Batteries (FLA) VS Sealed Lead-Acid Batteries (SLA) in a battery bank4. And finally, which 3 Batteries we recommend for your residential off-grid energy system(based on the criteria we go over in this article)
Lead Acid-Batteries vs. Other Battery TechnologiesMany of the batteries that are used in renewableenergy systems were originally designed for otherpurposes. The most prominent example of this is thelead acid battery which has dominated the industry foralong time.Deep cycle lead-acid batteries have proven to be one of the best (and most affordable) batterytypes for alternative energy system battery banks for thesereasons:
They’re able to withstand frequent dischargingThey’re cheaper than other kinds of batteriesThey have more rugged durability in a battery bankThey deliver more consistent performance than other batteriesThe fact that they are widely produced also means that they are relatively easy to replace if abattery in your battery bank needs replacing.Deep Cycle vs. Shallow Cycle (Car) BatteriesBack when the renewable energy industry was still picking up steam, people that wanted to gocompletely off the grid would often have to improvise and make do with car batteries. However,car batteries were never built for this purpose and shouldn’t be continuously drained andrecharged (which is what they need to do in a solar panel or wind turbine system).Car batteries are supposed to be used only for starting and ignition. If you take a look inside one,you will see that they have a large number of thin plates.
These plates have a big total surface area that can facilitate a large number of chemical reactions.When you start your car, these reactions produce the sudden burst of power that is needed forignition.Deep cycle batteries on the other hand, have thick lead plates that don’t give much room forchemical reactions. Though they produce less current, they are designed to do so for a muchlonger period of time.In essence, car batteries are “shallow cycle” batteries that will quickly burn out when used asstorage for renewable power.Flooded Lead-Acid Batteries (FLA) VS Sealed Lead- AcidBatteries (SLA)Before telling you what three batteries are best for alternative energy system’s battery banks, itshould be made clear why flooded lead-acid batteries (FLA’s) are better for renewable energythan sealed lead-acid batteries (SLA’s).
One of the reasons that some people favour SLA’s is because they require little maintenance.Unlike FLA’s that need to be checked regularly for water level, SLA’s that are used properly canbe left alone.However, sealed lead-acid batteries have two big flaws: they are sensitive and wear out quickly.So if you’re planning on using your solar panel or wind power system every day, this willeventually pose a problem.So, here are the categories of flooded lead-acid batteries that are best for an off- the-grid powersystem:
The 3 Best BatteriesSo now that we know we want a lead acid battery, that’s flooded (FLA), and also has deep cycleproperties here are our 3 favorite batteries for an off-grid system’s battery bank:So, here are the categories of flooded lead-acid batteries that are best for an off- the-grid powersystem:1) Golf Cart Batteries five to six year life span
Golf cart batteries are the most widelymanufactured batteries on this list.They also work great in an alternative energysystem application. So it’s no surprise thatthey’re one of the most commonly usedbatteries in battery banks for renewableenergy systems.
2) Industrial or Forklift BatteriesA battery bank that uses one or more industrialbatteries follows the opposite philosophy of a golf cartbattery bank. Instead of relying on multiple strings ofsmaller batteries, you use a few or even one batteryto store all of your energy.
Because these batteries aren’t usually manufactured to standard dimensions, you will have tohave one made that is just right for your needs.Or you can try to find an old industrial or forklift battery that’s the correct size for your systemand use that.Other things to consider are:These bigger batteries will be heavier and more difficult to move around. There may beadvancements in battery technology that could make the battery obsolete in years tocome.
3) L16 BatteriesIf you want batteries that have a little more capacitythan golf cart batteries but don’t want to spend onindustrial batteries, L16 batteries are a good middleground.These flooded lead-acid batteries were originally designed for supermarket floor scrubbers.
The good thing with these batteries is that they last a bit longer than golf cart batteries – aboutsix to eight years. However, they are often twice as heavy and the 6-volt models can be twice asexpensive.ConclusionDifferent homes will have different power requirement and will need battery banks that are sizedaccordingly.If you build a battery bank using any of the three batteries mentioned above, you should be ableto create a battery bank that is just right for your needs.
300 WATTS Polycrystalline solar panels – 2 x 150 watts panels How to Buy Solar Panels? For our setup, we have 2 Nos of 150 watts (12v) panels 2 x 150 watts panel 300 watts Types of Solar Panels available in market There are two types of solar cells available in market, Mono crystalline solar