What is solar energy?

Solar energy is quite simply the energy generated by the sun. This energy is captured through various means such as solar panels and transformed into useable electricity. This electricity can be utilised in people’s homes, office, or any building where electricity is required.

Solar energy has recently become a widespread topic as it is a source of renewable energy. There are considerable benefits in utilising solar energy, not just financially but also for the environment.

How do solar panels work?

The sun consistently releases energy photons (particles of light) which travel 150 million km to the earth’s surface. When the sun’s photons connect with the solar cells in a panel, the electrons from the atoms are knocked loose.

The process of separating electrons from their atoms creates solar electricity – if the cell’s positive and negative sides have conductors attached, an electrical circuit is then formed. The electrons then travel through the circuit, and electricity is produced.

Put simply, the solar panels follow a five-step system:

  • The solar panels collect sunlight through their photovoltaic (PV) cells. PV cells take light, or photons, and turn that light into solar electricity. When sunlight hits the solar panel, PV cells start working to produce direct current (DC) electricity.
  • Next, inverters convert solar power into useable electricity. Solar panels have different inverter set-ups depending on the technology. Despite the different set-ups, all inverters convert DC electricity, produced by the solar panels, into alternating current (AC) electricity.
  • Solar electricity is then used within your home to power your lighting, heating, electronics, or appliances. If your solar panels alone don’t power your entire home, the standard electricity it still operating as normal via the grid and will automatically draw energy where required.
  • Leftover or excess solar electricity goes to the power grid. Whilst your home would draw from solar energy during the day when the sun is up, traditional electricity would still be required at night when the solar panels are not converting from the sun’s energy.
  • Solar Electricity is measured by your net meter. Your net meter allows you to benefit from your solar panel system, irrelevant of circumstances. Any excess solar energy is used elsewhere after being put back into the grid. As a customer you would receive a credit for this energy which can be drawn back from the grid when required.
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Benefits of Solar Energy

  • Solar panels create a renewable energy source which can be collected almost anywhere in the world every day from the sun.
  • Solar energy helps to reduce electricity bills, depending on your solar system size. When your solar panels produce more energy than required, you’ll receive credits when being sent back to the grid.
  • Maintenance costs for solar systems are low, and there’s minimal wear & tear on panels with no moving parts. Cables & isolators should be maintained regularly, however these are generally low costs. All Erg Energy inverters come with a 10-year warranty giving you peace of mind for many years to come.
  • Solar is often used for many purposes across both residential and commercial properties. Solar panels can generate electricity for appliances, heat for pools, spas, indoor heating, and distilling water.

You could also be eligible for the Vic Solar Energy rebate. Click here to for more information.

To find out more about the benefits of Solar Energy, please feel free to call us on 1300 374 786 or fill out the contact form below.

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