What is a Solar Electric (PV) System?

 

In order to use solar light energy as a source of electricity for residential and commercial buildings, you will need a Solar Electric (PV) System. “PV” stands for photovoltaic – a solar cell technology that works by converting sunlight directly into usable electricity. This system is used in watches and calculators, which work on semi-conducting materials to absorb sunlight and produce power. Larger and more complex PV systems can provide electricity for residential homes and commercial buildings.

Components of a PV System

 

A PV (solar-electric) System is comprised of the following components:

 

  • Solar (PV) Panels – The Solar (PV) Panels consist of dozens of small, square-shaped solar cells which can convert light directly into electricity. A typical solar cell uses semiconductors made from silicon.

  • Inverter – The inverter converts direct current (DC) into alternative current (AC) electricity that is identical to that produced by the utility company.

  • Mounting System – The mounting system securely attaches PV panels to the roof or, in some cases, on the ground. It is designed to provide support and balance.

  • Monitoring System (optional) – the hardware and software system used to monitor the generation of a PV system.

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