What Are Solar Panels?
A solar panel (also known as a solar module, photovoltaic (PV) module or photovoltaic (PV) panel) is a packaged, connected assembly of photovoltaic cells. The solar panel can be used as a component of a larger photovoltaic system to generate and supply electricity in commercial and residential applications.
Each panel is rated by its DC (direct current) output power under standard test conditions and typically ranges from 100 to 450 watts.
How Do Solar Panels Work?
In a nutshell, there are four main phases that the energy passes through to get from the sun to your home. Firstly, we know that sunlight contains energy. Certain materials such as silicon can absorb this energy using a process known as the ‘photoelectric effect’. The sun’s rays shine down on the solar panel and the energy is absorbed into the silicon.
The energy then passes through a solar cell which is a thin semi-conductor wafer specially treated to form an electric field. Electric conductors are attached to the solar cell to form a circuit which then captures the released electrons in the form of an electrical current.
The electrical current that the photovoltaic module (solar panel) produces is direct current (DC) electricity. As most of us need alternating current (AC) electricity, an inverter is used to convert DC into AC.
What Government Rebates Are Available For Solar Power?
Under the Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme, Australian households that install a small-scale renewable energy system such as solar may be able to receive a benefit to help with the purchase cost.