The price of energy in Australia has risen substantially in recent years, and it doesn’t look like it will be going down anytime soon. This is perhaps one major reason why more homeowners are electing to have their own solar photovoltaic system – a system which relies on a thoroughly renewable source: the sun. If you’re in Australia and are trying to look into installing your own solar energy system, what do you need to know? The concept may be simple, but there are some facts and factors you need to know as well. Here’s a look at what you need to know about installing a solar energy system in Australia.
How a solar photovoltaic system really works
There are some materials which can generate electricity as they are exposed to light; this is referred to as the ‘photovoltaic effect’. This is how solar panels essentially work. Solar panels make use of the photovoltaic effect in order to convert the sun’s energy into DC (direct current) electric energy. Once it’s converted into DC, an inverter will change it into AC (alternating current) so it can be used in the electrical circuitry of a home. If your system produces additional electricity, this can be sold back to the grid, where you will also be paid a feed-in tariff. Alternatively, you can store this extra energy in a system for storage, so you can make use of the energy later on.
Solar panel installations work well when they face north, as this is when they are pointed straight at the sun. Installations will also work well when they are not shaded or blocked and are set at an optimum angle. Your installation’s efficiency will also be affected by the weather as well as where you reside.
The efficiency of your solar panels
There are different kinds of solar panels: monocrystalline solar panels, IBC or interdigitated back contact solar cells, and thin film panels. Monocrystalline solar panels are usually colouredblack, and they are seen as more efficient than multi-crystalline models, which often come in a dark blue colour. IBCs, on the other hand (also referred to as rear-contactcells), are a variationon typical solar cells, and they can also have high efficiency. Thin film cells are comprised of a slim layer of PV material which is set on a base metal or glass plate. These cells are not as common since the technology behind it is still evolving, but it may be more flexible in the future.
You want to consider the efficiency of your solar panels; better efficiency results in more energy production from a given area. Some solar panels are better at tolerating temperature, so be mindful of this when choosing your panels. The installation of the panels is also crucial; panels need to be set up in a way that will allow air to flow under the panels, so they are cooler. A good Brisbane solar installer such as Pedleys Solar should be able to explain everything you need to know about the installation of solar in Brisbane and the right kinds of solar panels for your needs. One more thing: make sure that your system is installed by an installer which is accredited by the CEC, or the Clean Energy Council.