Call (888) 338-0183 or click here for solar pricing


Wind Power Anywhere, Anytime!

Our post yesterday discussed the importance of the tower height….obviously the higher you go the more wind speeds you can pick up. Magenn Power, an innovate company has a very interesting product which will be released in 2009 that will change the way we see traditional wind turbines. Mageen Power understood that the wind is higher up in the sky and traditional vertical axis turbine designs are just plain inefficient in most areas. The company decided put the wind turbine where the air is, in the sky. In fact the MAGENN AIR ROTOR SYSTEM (M.A.R.S.) can soar 1,000 feet in the air and will catch the jet streams that exist everywhere. Currently, in general wind turbines can only be placed in areas with at least 10 miles per hour wind speeds to produce a significant return on investment. With the Magenn Power wind power can be technically be put anywhere. The wind turbine rotates on a horizontal axis and can be combined with diesel generators for off-grid use in developing countries and deliver power at the 20 cents a kWh range. The video below shows an excellent model of how the unique wind turbine can be used off-grid or grid-connected wind power system The soaring wind turbine stays a float with the use of non-flammable helium and the company has been conducting some interesting Field test of their products. The wind turbines will come in 10 to 25 kW (kilowatt) models with a target price of $3 to $5 dollars a watt. According to the company the Wind turbine has a lifespan for over 20 years. If you are thinking to install one of these puppies in the USA, you will need a special permit from the FAA. Magenn power has combined the same technology used in blimps into an innovative wind turbine design. I can’t wait to see this product hit the mainstream market, according to the company their target markets are developing nations. It’s probably going to be a very hard time deploying these here in the USA because of the building permit and FAA regulations. Overseas the rules are less strict so I can see It not being an issue. Although in rural areas of the USA we may see some of these units in action pretty soon. So as wind power evolves, will these be the turbines of the future? What do you think, will these types of designs catch on with the public? What do you think are the potential...

Read More

It’s not all about the wind generator, think about the pole!

You don’t want to put a solar panels in the shade, just like you don’t want to put a wind generator on a short pole. Wind Generators perform better the higher they are up in the air, therefore a taller pole the more you electricity you will produce. A taller pole may lead to a faster return because you can catch more wind but it also leads to a higher upfront cost for the pole. According to wind power experts in a Homepower magazine article, “How Tall is Too Tall” a wind turbine’s blades should at least be 30 feet above the tallest object within a 500 feet radius of the wind power system. The pole and the wind generator itself must be sat securely because this can make a huge difference in making or breaking your return on investment. A wind power system with a weak foundation in a high wind area will not outperform a wind power system in an area with medium wind speeds with a solid foundation. A taller pole can raise maintenance costs and may cause issues acquiring building permits if your home or business is close to other structures. Also if you have neighbors near by, they maybe worried about the aesthetics if the pole / tower is too...

Read More

Evergreen Solar ES-A Panels

Last month Evergreen Solar released its ES-A, a new solar panel line. The new panels offered by Evergreen Solar comes in 200, 205 or 210 watt models. There is a trend in the industry right now, we’re seeing more companies release solar panels that are rated over 200 watts. This means you can use less solar panels in a complete solar power system as the output of solar panels continues to increase. The Evergreen Solar team has not only thought about the output of the solar panels but has equipped the ES-A line with quick clickable connectors, which cuts down the time it takes to connect multiple solar panels together to create a solar array. Clickable connectors can make a big difference in cost savings in large commercial installations. Evergreen Solar Panels are manufactured using a string ribbon technology which reduces the carbon footprint in manufacturing Evergreen Solar panels by 50% compared to any other solar panel on the market. Evergreen Solar holds the title of “most environmentally friendly solar panel” in the market, especially compared to Chinese solar panel manufacturers which have been caught dumping manufacturing waste. Evergreen Solar is a US based company with superior quality which makes their products a hot...

Read More

Charge Controllers 101

What’s a charge controller? And why do I need one? Many consumers who are charging batteries with solar panels or have a grid tied system with battery backup will need a charge controller. A charge controller is a unit that sits between a solar panel and battery bank and regulates the charge so the battery is not over-charged. Over-charging a battery can lead to battery and solar panel damage, because once the battery is full, without a charge controller the electrical current can go back into the solar panel causing major damage to components. The picture above shows a morningstar sunkeeper charge controller which is a basic controller that does a great job regulating the electric current that comes from a solar panel into a battery. Charge controllers come in different voltages, for example the sunkeeper comes in a 12v or 24v….your charge controller has to match the voltage your solar panel puts out and how you have your batteries wired up. If you have a 12v solar panel, you would need a 12v charge controller and wire your batteries up in a 12v series. Even though most residential systems do not have a batteries and will never need a charge controller, those people who are working on off-grid systems or are building the next solar powered car, lawn mower or are trying to retro fit solar panels onto your devices, you need to understand why charge controllers are...

Read More

Issues to consider when shopping for wind power

Many consumers come to us asking about prices and figure that is the only barrier to purchasing a wind power system, although it goes much further than just prices. When putting up a wind power system you have to consider the following points: 1. Does your project site at least have 10mph wind speeds? check your wind speed here.2. Does your property have at least a half acre with unobstructed views? 3. Does the city zoning allow a structure 42′ feet tall? 4. Does your utility company have an interconnection agreement? 5. Have you considering speaking to your neighbors to let them know you maybe purchasing a wind power system that maybe visible from their home? Typically the city will require building permits to put up a solar or wind power system and there will be a fee for building permits you have to pay to the city. The city may also require tower engineering drawings that you may have to get from a certified engineer if you are building a custom tower to put up your wind...

Read More

All the buzz about thin film solar panels

It’s the word on the street, Thin Film Solar Panels, what are they? And why are so many people talking about thin film technology? Similar to how computers and cell phones became slimmer and more efficient as the technology evolved, the same thing is happening in the solar power industry. Solar Panels are becoming thinner but no necessarily more efficient, thin film solar cells are bringing the cost down for industrial electricity producers and large commercial entities although not for the residential or small business owner. Thin Film Solar Panels are typically less efficient or just as efficient as traditional silicon based solar panels, although they thin film panels are made up of other elements that can turn the sun’s rays into electricity besides silicon. As you may know one of the primary reasons solar panels have a high price tag is because there is a shortage of silicon since there is such a high demand for the substance. Although more silicon refineries are coming online, next year, this has not stopped the thin film solar manufacturers to continue to innovate in their space to use other elements which have the potential to be very efficient in the near future. Thin Film solar cells are more flexible and are not made out of glass therefore are virtually unbreakable…which make the technology very resilient. Thin film solar panels have a lot of potential in terms of bringing down the cost per watt for solar power systems, therefore much investment and talent is focusing on this sector of solar power because they see it as the future. Right now the market has limited thin film products that people are using to power small appliances or use thin film solar panels for small solar power system installations. People who have a lot of surface areas such as utility companies and big corporations can also take advantage of thin film technology. I agree with many industry people that thin film is the future of solar panels although I feel it is at least 5 years away until we see thin film solar panels that make financial sense out on the market for the general public to...

Read More