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Simon Herbert - South West Free Energy

10 Dec 2010 05:12:02

electric solar panels

Not to be confused with Solar Thermal panels which produce hot water Electric Solar Panels or Solar Photo-Voltaic (PV) panels as they should be called generate electricity when exposed to sunlight. Unlike almost any other renewable energy system Solar PV systems do not have any moving parts and require very little maintenance. They do not generate any noise unlike a wind turbine. They are very easy to install and do not require any major modification to heating and plumbing systems as is the case with solar hot water systems and heat pumps. They are the ideal choice for existing homes and business premises. The more panels you have the more electricity will be produced.

Solar PV panels are available in a number of different types. These include Mono-crystalline and Poly-crystalline, Thin-film as well as Hybrid which is a combination of thin film and mono-crystalline. Panels are available in a number of different finishes and colours depending on the technology. The majority are either Mono-crystalline finished in black and white or Poly-crystalline finished in blue. We are able to supply panels finished in black which may be more appropriate depending of the existing roof colour. Hybrid panels do provide a higher output for a given area but are more expensive. We can also supply Solar PV tiles which replace roof tiles and provide a more aesthetically pleasing finish but are rather more expensive and provide a lower output when compared to other types of panel.

The majority of panels installed at the moment are Mono-crystalline. These are about 1.6m by 0.8m in size with an output of about 240Wp. Typically a 2kWp system would have 8 panels each sized at about 1.6m x 0.9m.

The performance of Solar PV panels will reduce over time. To be MCS approved the output of Solar PV panels have to reduce by no more than 10% over 10 years and 20% over 25 years. When we provide an estimate of the savings and returns on may system we take in to account this performance reduction providing you with the most accurate estimate we can.

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