Solar PV is a fairly new trend within the UK. Solar PV captures energy from the Sun using Photovoltaic cells. These cells then convert the sunlight into electricity which is then used to run household appliances and lighting.
Some people within the UK are under the impression that the UK is not an ideal place to have solar panels fitted due to its lack of sunshine. However this is certainly not the case as Solar Panels do not need a lot of sunshine, what they do require is energy from the sun which is available during sun light hours; even on a cloudy day it’s possible to generate energy from the sun.
How do Photovoltaic (PV) cells work?
Photovoltaic more commonly known as solar panels are attached to the roof or walls. Each cell is made up of semiconducting material, usually silicon. When sunlight shines on these cells it creates electricity across the layers. The stronger the sunlight, the stronger the electricity is produced.
Cost, savings and maintenance
Although the initial outlay for solar panels can seem expensive, they do work out considerably cheaper in the long run. The Government run scheme Feed in Tariff is a big incentive for many people when deciding whether or not to go ahead with solar energy. The Feed in Tariff scheme can save households hundreds of pounds every year. The maintenance is generally small, they need to be kept clean and make sure trees don’t start to overshadow them.
Solar Thermal Systems
Another important application of solar energy is solar thermal systems. Similar to Solar PV these system capture the sun’s energy but converts it to heat water as opposed to electricity. These systems can be used in homes and businesses.
They can be fitted to your existing heating system. A Correctly installed Solar Thermal System will be able to produce enough hot water throughout the year. During the summer months the solar thermal system will be sufficient in being the sole provider for hot water and in the winter months the system can work along side your existing system.