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grid tie inverters have software

Think of a grid tie inverter as the brain of your solar electric system, without a grid inverter solar panels alone would be not be able to interface with the grid. Just like your computer, a grid tie inverter has a processor that allows software to run which makes the concept of connecting a solar power system to the grid possible. The software on inverters control the power stage which makes the power produced sine wave, the signal that’s compatible with the grid and required by most appliances. Inverter software is responsible for the MPPT (maximum power point tracking), a standard feature on most grid tie inverters which keeps the dc voltage and current at optimal levels to squeeze more efficiency out of your system. The software turns the inverter on in the morning and shuts it off at night. Now that you have realized that software on the inverter a critical element, its important the inverter you purchase has reliable software to keep your solar panels in tune with the...

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Simple Grid Tie Solar Power System Drawing

The Guide to Photovoltaic System Design and Installation by the California Energy Commission has an interesting drawing of how a solar electric system wires up to the grid. Grid interactive systems do not have a battery bank, therefore if there is a blackout your power will also go down. A grid tied / interactive system is easier to install and takes 40% less time then a system with batteries because a grid tie system have less wiring and components to deal with. The diagram above shows how a standard solar power system is connected to the grid. Most homes and businesses that have solar electric systems in the USA are typically grid tie systems. The grid tie solar system diagram shows a great view of the difference between the DC and AC side of the system. As you can see the inverter is the hub of the system and an important part of the overall efficiency of the system. The PV Array is a group of solar panels wired together. The size of the array depends on your individual clean energy generation goals and electric needs. If you don’t know how to calculate the size of your system, see Calculating the Economics of Solar PV...

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Sharp OnEnergy Solar Power Systems

The Sharp OnEnergy Solar Power system makes installing solar panels on a home easy to order and install. Sharp Solar has also incorporated great looking aesthetics, because of the strong customer feedback within the solar panel industry to make solar panels look better for residential roof tops. The Sharp OnEnergy complete solar power systems come with everything you need right down to the last screw. The solar power kit from Sharp has a UL Listed grounding which lowers your installation time dramatically. The Sharp OnEnergy system can also be used for light commercial applications and focuses on the ease of installation by using a shared rail system that requires 30% less rails than traditional solar power systems. The racking system included in the OnEnergy system is compatible with all types of roofs and no parts of the mounting structure are are visible on the roof. The great aspect of these system is the detailed installation manual that Sharp put together to make the installation process easy to understand and deploy for installers and do-it-yourselfers alike. The installation manual that is included with the sharp OnEnergy systems is one of the best documents I have seen that has been included with a complete Grid Tie Solar Power System. As solar power becomes more mainstream we are seeing standardized and easier to deploy systems that is really pushing solar on every roof across the USA in our...

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Three Types of Solar Power Systems

There are three major types of solar power systems that are unique to each solar power shopper. Let’s get into a quick overview of the options you have as a consumer looking to produce electricity from the sun: 1. Grid Tie Systems These systems are connected to the grid which interact with your utility company, when extra power is generated it is fed back into the grid and you receive a credit from the utility company for every kWh (kilowatt hour) you contribute. You can only install a grid connected system in areas, which utilities offer “net-metering”. Grid tie systems do not provide backup power when there is a power outage. 2. Grid Tie Systems with Battery Backup Similar to a grid tie system, this system feeds back into the grid and spins your meter backwards when you are producing more than you are using. Although the interesting part of this system is it has an inverter that can connect to a battery bank. Batteries can store solar juice for your critical loads during a power outage. This type of system will keep your home or business running during a blackout. Adding a battery backup sacrifices efficiency of the system, although the trade off of having power during a blackout may meet your needs. 3. Off-Grid Systems Off-Grid systems are independent of the utility. These types of systems are typically found in remote areas which have no access to electric service. Off-Grid Systems can be made up of solar panels, wind turbines, micro hydroelectric or a combination. Off-Grid systems are very dependent on the battery bank, so when designing an off-grid system, a load calculation with the specific appliances (down to the model numbers of the appliances) need to be conducted. Often off-grid system owners combine fossil fuel generators for backup when the off grid system cannot meet the entire needs of the...

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How grid connected solar panel systems work.

After speaking with many customers over this week, I noticed there is confusion with some solar / wind power shoppers about what the grid really means and how a grid connected solar photovoltaic (solar panel) system works for a home. So I decided to focus today’s post about some of the basics. According to Southern California Edison the definition of “the grid” is the following: “a large interconnection of both generation and transmission electrical subsystemsto facilitate efficient distribution of electricity to consumers and businesses.” The grid is a network in which electricity gets consumed and produced, therefore a grid connected system turns your home into an electricity producing asset that shares extra power with the grid. With a grid connected solar panel system you send extra power back into the grid, and receive a credit from the utility company for every kWh (kilowatt hour) you contribute to the grid. The of US Department of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy has created a good illustration of how a grid connected system works with a typical...

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