Solar PV systems are gaining popularity among residential and commercial property owners around the world and India is no exception. People are realizing the various benefits of installing a Solar PV system, and therefore, they are switching to Solar PV systems that harness the sun’s energy to generate greener and inexpensive energy. The switch has also helped them reduce their dependence for power on fossil fuel-backed local grids that not only provide power at higher rates but also add to the carbon footprint woes.

If you too are thinking of switching to a solar power system here are a few things that you should know before you take the plunge.

What is a Solar PV System?

Solar PV systems, as we know, are used to harness the energy of the Sun and convert solar energy into electricity in the form of Direct Current. They do so with the help of solar panels that are made of solar cells that contain a semiconducting material, usually silicon. A typical solar panel has two layers of semiconductor material - a positive and a negative layer. When sunlight strikes the solar panel an electric field is created between these two layers which leads to the generation of Direct Current. This current then gets transferred to the solar inverter which further converts it into alternating current that is used to power home appliances.

Types of Solar PV Systems

Solar PV systems can be categorized into three main types -
  1. On Grid or Grid-tied Solar PV systems - These are one of the most commonly found solar PV systems. Properties with on grid solar PV systems are connected to the grid so that they can draw energy from the grid when the solar panels aren’t producing enough power.
  2. Off-grid Solar PV systems - The off-grid solar PV systems have no connection to the grid whatsoever. Homes with off grid solar PV systems solely depend on solar panels for their energy requirement. However, they do have solar batteries installed with them so that surplus energy can be stored in these batteries and can be used later when the solar panels aren’t producing any energy.
  3. Hybrid systems: The hybrid solar panels are a combination of on grid and off grid solar pv systems. They are connected to the local grid and they also have solar batteries installed with them.

The Components of a Solar PV System

Depending upon the type of solar PV system installed on a property it has some of the following components.

Solar panels

Solar panels are the key components of a solar PV system as they are the ones that capture the sun’s energy and produce electricity. There are two main types of solar panels Monocrystalline PERC and Polycrystalline. Depending upon the required efficiency, roof space, budget and similar other factors you may choose between the two.

Solar racking

Solar panels cannot be directly attached to the roof. Also, due to shading issues, panels need to be installed at a certain height and angle to receive optimal sunlight. It is because of these reasons solar racking (also known as solar mountings) are required.

Solar inverter

The solar inverter is another important component of a solar PV system. It is the solar inverter that converts the DC energy produced by the solar panels into AC form of electricity so that it can be used to power the home appliances. Solar inverters also help protect appliances from voltage fluctuations.

Solar Battery

As mentioned earlier, solar batteries are installed with off-grid and hybrid solar PV systems so that they can store energy which can be used later when the solar panels aren’t generating any energy.

Word of Advice

If you are planning to go solar, you should go with an industry leader in the solar products manufacturing space. One such name that you can consider is Luminous India. They are one of the pioneers in the solar power systems space and are known for manufacturing the best-in-class solar products.

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