With solar panels, your home or business can become an energy producer, rather than just an energy consumer. Over the years, you’ll gain energy independence and stop having to pay for utilities. But, how exactly do solar panels harness energy from the sun for your use?
Despite being simple and low-maintenance for property owners, solar panels are backed by impressive scientific technology. Let’s explore what makes solar panels work for your Tampa home or business!
How do solar panels harness energy from the sun for your use? Let’s explore what makes solar panels work for your Tampa home or business!
How Do Solar Panels Turn Sunlight Into Energy?
Photovoltaic cells are the building blocks of solar panels. It’s thanks to photovoltaic cells that solar panels can capture the sun’s energy and convert it into electricity. A solar panel is made up of many of these cells, all linked together, which absorb sunlight to create electricity.
An electric field is necessary for photovoltaic cells to serve their purpose. To create an electric field, in which opposite charges are pulled apart, solar panels are comprised of silicon that’s been doped with phosphorus and boron. This means that the solar panel consists of alternating positive and negative charges, thus generating an electric field.
The materials in a solar panel – silicon, phosphorus, and boron – work together to knock electrons free from atoms to create a stream of energy. Phosphorus is added to the uppermost layer of silicon. This provides a negative charge. The layer underneath is given boron, creating a positive charge. The panel can then absorb a photon from the sun’s rays, freeing up an electron to create electricity.
More Panels = More Energy Production
When it comes to a solar system, the more solar panels that are installed, the greater your energy production potential. A higher number of solar panels will lead to a higher volume of photons from the sun reaching the system. With more photons reaching the solar system, more electrons will be knocked free from atoms, creating a stronger flow of energy in comparison to systems with fewer panels.
Your Tampa solar panel experts will help you decide the right number of solar panels for your home. The location of the solar panels is also important, as the panels should be positioned to receive optimal sunlight throughout the day.
How Does Solar Power Connect To The Electrical Grid?
Now, we know how solar panels can generate electricity from sunlight. But, how does that link to the electrical grid that your home is connected to? Also, how do the big energy companies keep track of your solar system’s electricity production in Tampa and beyond?
The answer: your home’s utility meter. Your home has a utility meter that allows your power provider to track and supply energy for your home. When you have solar panels installed for your home, they’ll connect to your utility meter. Then, this meter can track and tap into the power that your solar system produces.
What About Net Metering?
Through net metering, solar system owners are compensated for the energy that their homes generate and contribute to the electrical grid. Specifically, when the sun is shining, your home solar system may produce an abundance of electricity. The electricity that you don’t use will be added to the electrical grid. This meter records this contribution and the homeowner will receive a credit. That credit can be used when the homeowner’s energy usage exceeds their solar production, such as during a cloudy day or at night.
Net Metering and Energy Independence
With net metering, homeowners with solar panels can reduce their future energy costs through the production of clean energy. The net metering system is one of the largest financial benefits of owning a solar panel system in Tampa, allowing homeowners to become energy independent.
Investing in a Sun-Powered Home
By understanding how solar panels work to provide energy to homes, you can clearly see the financial and environmental benefits of owning a solar system. In working to become energy independent, you can slash your utility bills while promoting a clean energy source for the future of our planet.
Ready to become an energy producer? Contact our Tampa solar panel team today.