How Solar Works

Photovoltaic (PV) latin, photo = light ; voltaic = electricity

So how does it all work?
Well, photovoltaic is the direct conversion of light into electricity at the atomic level. Some materials exhibit a property known as the photoelectric effect this causes them to absorb photons of light and release electrons. So when light hits a pv cell the material absorbs the light particles (photons). When this happens an electron is released within the cell. This movement will create a flow between the layers of material within the cell creating a current. These cells are then connected in series (+ to -) to form a solar panel. The panels are then connected in series on your roof making up a solar array which is used to generate electricity in the form of direct current. We can now use this direct current (DC) electricity through an inverter (housed anywhere in the home) normally near the electricity meter to change the DC electricity in to normal house electricity. Alternating current (AC) to run everyday appliances in your home.
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So, if you are using your appliances during daylight hours, they will be run directly from the panels and any surplus will go to the national grid via the export meter (creating a credit). If you don't use any appliances during the day, all the electricity from the solar array will go directly to the national grid to supply other people using electricity (click on picture to show how it works). At night time you can either use the national grid as normal or you can run on batteries (see off grid or combined) to supply your power two meters are normally fitted; one records how much you use from the grid; the other records how much you produce from your solar array. Southwest Solar Solutions can arrange all metering changes and we can arrange green tariffs to buy back your surplus electricity on a quarterly basis. click here...


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Southwest Solar Solutions Kirthenwood Haven, Bosence Road, Townshend, Hayle, Cornwall. TR27 6AJ. Office: 01736 850636,
Mobile: 07720 51 72 77