Thu. Aug 15th, 2019

Environmental and Health Safety

Global Climate Change, Facts, Solutions, Home Safety

Pros and Cons on Solar Energy

6 min read
Pros-and-Cons-on-Solar-Energy

We will have a closer look to pros and cons on solar energy.

frequently asked about solar panels and photovoltaic.  What is a photovoltaic panel?
You may watch the video first..

1) What performance can I expect? What is photovoltaic cells power?

It depends on several factors like weather, distance from the equator, shading, how clean the panels are, daytime and maximal output. For a 100 watt rooftop panel one can estimate that about 24,000 watts per year can be produced.

If you want to know how many solar panels you need to run a solar system then it’s recommended to estimate by the approximate amount what you pay for your monthly electricity bill. You can find a lot of solar panel calculators online. They can determine the approximate number of panels you might need. You simply enter what you pay for your monthly electricity bill in average.

It’s important to clean the solar panel occasionally in order to protect it from damage. Keep it free of debris. Also, keep heavy snow off of the solar panel as good as possible in case you are living in a colder climate.

Usually you will apply the solar panels exposed to sunlight of course. Under artificial light solar panels will also work but not as efficiently. However, the best way to get the most out of solar panels is to stick with sunlight to power the panels. The reason is a fundamental law of physics. What results is a net loss whenever energy is changed from one form to another.

If there are some panels shaded other solar panels need to be exposed fully to sunlight. The reason why is the way the wiring is designed. The angle of the solar panels is also important simply because solar panels work best when each single cell has got fully sunlight exposure.

Sun light photons are converted into DC voltage – that becomes usable energy. Then DC voltage is converted to AC power by an inverter. AC power is connected to the electrical loads through a breaker in the electric panel. The AC power gets to you home.

2) Which direction should I place my solar panel?

One of the most important factors in applying a solar panel system is the direction and the angles of the setting. These considerations will affect efficiency and performance of the entire system. Usually it is suggested to place the panels facing south as this is the general direction. But there are a lot of factors that influence an exact direction and angle, for example climate and latitude in your location. A specialist can help you if you don’t know what is best.

Solar power can work actually anywhere. Even in cloudy climates you do have enough sunlight in order to supply your own electricity needs. In Germany there are less sunlight hours than areas like Alaska and Seattle, anyway Germany provides half of the country with energy from solar panels. They applied a huge amount of available roof space on public- respectively residential buildings.

It is surprising that so much electricity can be generated from surfaces like roofs. That’s because efficiency is constantly improving. Solar panels can also be applied to any cabin roof or even on open fields.

The solar panel will go into sleep- or standby mode during times when sunlight is not available. Of course sun is needed for solar panels in order to convert sunlight into electricity.

You can also use a battery that stores electricity produced by the panels during daylight for later usage.

3) Can the cost of producing solar panels be covered from the benefits they will bring

Years ago, when PV technology was young, producing solar panels was inefficient. Today highly efficient solar panels are produced by high modern technology.

As the most solar panels have a life span that is longer than 25 years, it hardly can be called wasteful anymore.

Since there are no mobile parts with fixed panels maintaining solar panels is very simple. Using a hose you can do a few washes a year to remove dust and debris. Don’t spray cold water on the hot surface of the panel during a sunny day. That could cause a crack in the cells. You can also apply automated cleaners. They can be programmed to clean the panels periodically.

Typically a US residential home uses an about 5.5kW system, that’s according to about 800kWh per month. That is assuming that 100% of electricity needs to be covered from a solar system and an average daylight of 4.5 hours.

How will my solar power work with my grid-connected utility company? What is net metering?

Your solar power works with your grid-connected utility company. If your solar panels produce more than you need at the moment electricity will be transferred to the grid. For the excess energy that your panels produce most states offer to pay from $.15/kWh to $. 53/kWh. This energy will be used for other customers in this case. I recommend contacting your utility company to find out all the possibilities you have.

4) What is the life span of solar panels?

Solar energy becomes one of the most popular and sustainable energy nowadays worldwide. Photovoltaic panels become important more and more. Because of the development of the technology the life expectancy can be considered of about 20 to 40 years.

Some may not believe it, but if we are aware of care and maintenance 40 years of use is easily possible. Of course performance and efficiency will decline by the age of the panels, but that’s not a big issue. Always considering to take good care of it of course. Then solar panels can still produce from 75% to 85% after 40 years.

If you need a solar panel for your boat or RV you should use panels made with an ant-corrosive material because it must work in a highly corrosive atmosphere. In this case it is salt water.

Solar cells are pretty small so they are connected in series. Therefore, the voltage increases and a panel of cells produce enough electricity for a reasonable usage. Solar panels are encapsulated and laminated. So they can be put somewhere outdoors to collect sunlight without having troubles with destruction or damage.

5) PROS

– First of all solar panels are one of the leading – if not THE leading – alternative energy systems nowadays. It is a very good possibility to avoid using electricity from nuclear power stations, fired power expectant or any other resource that is not renewable. That’s a big help for the environmental protection of course.

– Solar panels therefore save the pollution of CO2.

– 95% of the material can be recycled. That’s got a second positive effect because producing new panels by using recycled material takes much less energy in production.

– Silent working

– Increase of the value of the house

– Gives you independence from the supplier

– Simply technique

– Little maintenance

– You can receive money as soon as you deliver electricity to the grid supplier in most countries

– Silicon Solar offers a wide assortment of panels from small, encapsulated single cells with an output of less than 1 watt, to 230 watt high output panels designed for larger PV arrays. They also carry panels comprised of poly crystalline silicon, mono crystalline silicon and amorphous silicon cells.

6) CONS

– Performance decreases on the long term – depending on cleaning and maintenance

– Rather high investment costs

– A suitable area is needed for roof panels (roof, cabin, yard.)

– Supply of electricity varies according to weather conditions

Of course I cannot recommend a specific company to you. That wouldn’t be serious. It depends the area you live, the weather climate and much more. The best would be to call a local company that is really familiar with the situation. They can provide you with good information specifically to your needs.

==> Some other items you might find useful and also help
to save you money on the long run you can find here ==<

Here we see some great ideas how we can learn from nature – and use the knowledge for ourselves.

All in all one can say that there are much more advantages than disadvantages.

And first and foremost we do a step towards environment protection for our children.

If you have any questions or suggestions please feel free to write a post!
Hope I could give you some useful information.
Yours,
George

 

2 thoughts on “Pros and Cons on Solar Energy

  1. Thank you for your article! My husband and I have been considering putting solar panels on our house for a few years. Here in Arizona you can typically get them put on your house at no cost to you, but you still have to pay for the energy you use from the solar panels, the rest of the energy gets sold by the solar panel company to the electric company. It’s less expensive than electric, but still cost involved and voids the warranty on the roof.

    But I do still like the idea of cleaner energy from the sun and it would shade part of the roof on the house and maybe cool things down a little inside. Any idea how the heat of living in the desert affects how long the solar panels are good for? That is one concern that I do have- with direct sun, summer temperatures over 110 degrees and very little ozone I’m not sure how long they would last.

    1. Hallo Amber,

      many thanks for your posting.
      The Arizona idea sounds reasonable. There is an interesting idea HERE as well…
      As I’m not living in or near a desert (not yet!) I can hardly imagine how it is..
      I found serious scientific studies going on in Morocco/Africa done by a German institute. Though the article is in German I think it can easily be (understandably) translated by google translator.
      Here you can find it.

      I think there are a lot of possibilities for solar panels. And it should be supported by governments.

      All the best for your project! 🙂
      George

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