The word “solar panel” can be used to describe a variety of solar technology. It’s a term that’s frequently used to refer to both electricity-generating and heat-generating panels. Solar panels that generate energy are known as “solar photovoltaic (PV) modules” in the industry. When exposed to light, these panels are constructed of materials that create DC power.
When contemplating solar panels, think about whether you want a system that generates electricity (solar PV panels) or one that heats water (solar thermal panels) (solar thermal panels). The questions in this document are all about solar panels that generate power.
There are numerous solar PV technologies and products available. The performance and cost of various items varied significantly. The following are the most common solar PV technologies:
- Mono-crystalline silicon panels are the most efficient commercial solar panels in converting light into energy. • Multi-crystalline silicon panels are slightly less efficient than mono-crystalline panels, but they are often less priced.
- Thin film panels (including those built of cadmium telluride (CdTe), copper indium gallium diselenide (CIGS), and amorphous silicon (a- Si)): this category includes a variety of technologies. These technologies aren’t commonly used, yet they’re popular because of their attractive appearance.
The amount of electricity generated annually will be determined by a number of factors, including the hardware chosen, system size, geographical location, and panel installation orientation. On a clear sunny day, 1 square meter of silicon solar panels will provide approximately 150W of power (enough to operate a laptop computer). If well-located, a 20 sq. m (3kW) house solar PV system would generate roughly 2,600kWh of electricity per year, which is more than 40% of the usual annual electricity usage of an Irish home.
Solar PV systems will continue to generate power while there is daylight, therefore they will continue to work in Ireland on cloudy days. They will not be able to produce electricity at their full rated capacity (the value in kilowatts (kW) in these conditions, but rather at a fraction of that amount. Solar panels function best in direct sunshine, hence solar PV systems in Ireland often generate less than solar PV systems in sunnier nations like Spain. As previously stated, if well-located, a 20 sq. m (3kW) house solar PV system would create roughly 2,600kWh of power per year, which is more than 40% of the usual annual electricity usage of an Irish home.
When deciding whether or not solar panels are suitable for your house, there are several factors to consider. It’s important to consider how much of the generated power you’ll consume, since this will determine how cost-effective it is as a residential solution. Solar PV systems produce power only during daylight hours, primarily in the middle of the day, when you are likely to be at work.
Also, from May to September, a solar PV system produces around 75% of its yearly energy. Based on the pattern of generation from the solar PV system, as well as the pattern of energy demand and occupancy for your house, you must determine how much of the generated power you will consume in your home.
It’s critical to choose a capable installer. There are presently no official requirements for installation credentials, although the solar system must be connected by a Registered Electrical Contractor.
Larger solar PV installations on residential rooftops will almost always need planning approval. Solar PV systems installed in a household setting with a total roof area of less than 12 sq. m (and less than 50% of the total roof area) are free from planning.
There are a variety of tried-and-true methods for attaching solar panels to your roof. The solar panels are usually mounted on aluminum rails above the existing roof tiles, although certain systems allow for an integrated, “flush” connection in which the roof tiles are removed and replaced with the solar panels. The most significant aspect for homeowners is that the installation will not impair the water tightness of your roof. Installers should not be allowed to drill into roof tiles to connect PV panels since this might result in future roof leaks.
This is a more complicated method of storing any potential electric energy exported. When you add a battery to your solar PV system, it will charge when the PV system is producing power that isn’t being used, and then discharge when you need it (typically that evening/night). The percentage of solar PV power used in your home may be increased with the use of a battery. However, adding a battery to the system raises the PV system’s cost, and some energy is wasted in the battery throughout the charge and discharge cycle.
When deciding whether or not solar panels are ideal for your building, there are a number of factors to consider. It’s important to consider how much of the generated power you’ll consume, since this will determine how cost-effective the solution is for you. Solar PV systems only generate power during daylight hours, primarily in the afternoon. This might be an excellent choice for enterprises with high daytime power usage.
- Accelerated Capital Allowances (ACA): The ACA is a tax break for corporations, single traders, and other non-profits. In the first year of operation, the program allows them to deduct 100 percent of the purchase price of qualified energy efficient equipment from their profit. Solar PV systems are eligible for the program if the solar panel model is listed on the Triple E Register.
- EXEED grants: The Excellence in Energy Efficiency Design (EXEED) program provides grants to businesses and industries for energy efficiency upgrades, which can include solar PV installations. On the EXEED website, you may get further information.
Energy companies are presently under no obligation to pay their customers for the electricity generated by their solar panels (also known as a ‘Feed-in-tariff’). Energy providers must determine whether or not to offer such a program to their clients.