The sun is the greatest source of energy, one of the main reasons behind the earth being the only source of life is it’s position on the solar system, situated in the so called Goldilocks zone, it receives adequate solar energy, neither too much, nor too little, thus survival is possible here. But solar energy can also be a progressive form of energy for both personal and commercial use, generally solar panels are used in order to convert solar energy to useable electrical energy.
What is a solar panel:
The solar panel is basically a panel designed to absorb the sun’s rays as a source of energy for generating electricity or heating. Solar panels can be used for a wide variety of applications that include including remote power systems, telecommunications equipment, remote sensing, and most importantly for the production of electricity by residential and commercial solar electric systems.
The history of the development of solar energy tracks back to about 100 years ago, previously solar energy was only used for heating and producing steam which can be used for running machines, but since Edmond Becquerels invention of photovoltaic effect, the research on solar energy took a new leap, in 1893, Charles Fritts invented the first solar panel with layers of selenium and gold to convert solar energy to electrical energy.
In 1941, American inventor Russell Ohl patented the first Silicon Solar Panel, this panel led to the first commercial production of solar panels in 1954 and they were first used in satellites and the first mainstream use was noticed In calculators
Solar panels have traveled a long way from being the batteries of just calculators, they are far more powerful, efficient and sustainable. Currently there are two generations of solar panels available, they are:
- First generation Solar Panels:
These solar panels are made out of either monocrystaline or polycrystaline silicone, they are not very good on the design aesthetics, but they are more efficient, they can yield an output of upto 12-19%
- Second generation solar panels:
These generation of solar panels are made out of amorphous silicone, also they may contain other elements, and this name is also applicable for solar panels made from other materials available in the market, they include CIS (copper-indium-selenium) and CdTe (cadmium telluride) cells. One of the main features of such cells that they contain thin semiconductor layers, thus they’re cheaper and looks better, but their output isn’t as good as the first generation ones. They can yield an output of upto 5-11%
One of the most important parts of a solar panel is the inverter, generally the electricity produced in a solar panel is direct current (DC) and it needs to be converted to Alternating Current (AC) for household usage. The inverter is used for the conversion, and thus it is one of the most important parts of a solar power system
In order to attain the maximum output from solar panels, it requires proper placement of it. The more sunlight it can harness, the more energy it is likely to produce, so the position is very important, the place should receive adequate sunlight and the angling should be done correctly to maximize the production.
With constan research and investment on solar panels, it goes without saying thatthe best is yet to come.