Tagged in: Solar Panels

Build Your Own Solar Panels

If you previously thought that building a solar panel was difficult, think again.

Even if you are not a technology geek or DIY expert, you can still create your own energy producing solar panels for residential and commercial use.

The materials that you need when making the solar panel are available in your local area. You can also purchase others from online stores.

Build Your Own Solar Panels and Solar Cells

One of the most important components of the solar panel is the photovoltaic cells or the solar cells. These cells are in most cases made from silicon.

This is the same material that is used in making computer chips. Any solar cell consists of two silicon layers that are separated by a layer of insulating material.

These layers work together to convert the sun rays into the electricity you desire. The cells are one of the main components in the solar panel system.

There are two main classes of solar cells. Class A and Class B cells. Both of these work nearly the same (it doesn’t matter which type you purchase).

Solar Panel Components

  • Wood plate
  • Photovoltaic cells
  • Tabbing
  • Solder
  • Soldering iron

When it comes to learning to make solar panels, there are no special tools required.

Solar Panel Materials

  • Solar cells
  • Plexiglas
  • Lumber
  • Screws
  • Wire
  • Jones plug
  • Caulk silicon material
  • Diode

Should You Build Your Own Solar Panels?

By learning the process of creating your own solar panel, you will save a lot of cash on monthly electricity bills. There is no doubt that this is a great investment and one of the worthwhile projects that anyone can take on.

Photovoltaic (Solar) cells need to be user friendly and cheap. On the other hand, you need to consider a 70mA solar cell that is made of Copper Indium diSelenide (CIS) in making the solar panel.

Buy CIS tabbed cells to make the process of creating the solar panel much easier and faster. This is because the process of stringing the cells is much simpler. You connect the photovoltaic cells in series through tabs in order to generate the amount of voltage you need.

After doing so, you solder the cells together and then glue them on the holding frame. After you have done all the wiring, you can then proceed to cover the plates with glass or plastic.

In order to appreciate the real essence of having to build your own solar panels, you can have a look at Green DIY Energy which is without a doubt the best way to produce energy.

The Advantages of Solar Panels

Solar panels are something which more and more people are considering getting. There are two ways of getting them and it is important to think hard about which to go for. You can either pay for the panels yourself and then make that big investment, waiting for the money to come back by way of savings in your electricity bill as well as the feed in tariff you get back. The alternative is to allow a company to install them and they will pay for them but you will only save the electricity and not benefit from the feed in tariff.

If you can afford to make the investment, then this is well worth the consideration. It can be worth getting a few quotations and looking at how much return you are likely to get on your investment. Despite the drop in feed in tariff, it is likely that you will still get a decent return on your money. However, finding the lump sum to do it, can be difficult for some people.

Using a company to do it for you can cut out some of the hassle, they will pay the lump sum and organise the fitting. However, it does mean that you will not benefit form the feed in tariff. However, the electricity savings will still add up as they can reduce bills by a third. You may also find that you become much more aware of how much you are using and cut your usage and so save even more.

When deciding which to go for, it is important to decide which will be best for you now and I the future. Consider what might happen if you want to sell your house, for example or if you manage to have enough money to invest yourself in panel would regret going with the other scheme.

Of course, it is not worth all houses getting solar panels, it depends on which way they are facing, so this may mean that you will not be able to get them anyway. However, if you have a large garden you may be able to put an array on the ground, so look in to all options before you decide against it.

History Of Solar Power Usage

Solar power might seem like a new “invention“ but the fact is that the history of solar power usage goes back over 140 years. Inventors back then were just as worried about the world’s reliance on fossil fuels as they are currently.
From 1860 to 1880 Auguste Mouchout worked on a solar powered engine which operated by converting solar energy to steam power. He was motivated due to extensive coal usage in Europe and his knowledge that the coal reserves wouldn’t be around forever.

The French government funded Mouchout’s efforts and he later invented the half-horsepower engine, a steam engine capable of running a water pump. It was sent to be utilized in Algeria, which was highly dependent on coal. Algeria had abundant sunshine and also needed plenty of water.

At the same time, and Englishman in India named William Adams viewed Mouchout’s device as too hard to use for larger applications.  He invented another solution; he built a rack that had many small mirrors around a stationary boiler, which let him get 2.5 horsepower from the engine.

Charles Teller worked with solar power from 1885 to 1889, inventing big solar collectors to be placed on rooftops.  His primary objective was refrigeration and the invention was used to make ice.  He also imagined his gadgets taming the African plains, making them more friendly to farming and development.

Back in 1903, the history of solar power usage shows that Aubrey Eneas built on Mouchout’s designs, making them bigger and more practical.  He sold one finished system for just over $2000 to an Arizona doctor. After just a few days, it was damaged by a windstorm and was no longer useful. Another $2500 system was sold in Arizona but didn’t even make it through the first hailstorm.

Around the same time Henry E. Willsie created two solar plants capable of storing energy from the day for it to be utilized at night. At 15 horsepower, Willsie’s invention composed of flat plate collectors also boasted a superior power rating.

In 1906 Frank Shuman further developed and modified Willsie’s system. It resulted in an engine of 33 horsepower. After transporting it to a plant located in Cairo, the performance improved even more dramatically, with an engine of 55 horsepower.

For the next 50 years, not much was done with solar power. In 1954, photovoltaic cells were invented at Bell labs, and this was a big breakthrough in the industry. During the 1970s, people started seeing, once again, the need for solar power as gas pump prices increased.

Today solar power systems are fully open to individuals for use at their private residence or business use. It has not always been that way, by the middle of the 1980’s the Luz Company had developed various electric solar power plants.

Due to alleged lack of cooperation by the government the company was bankrupt and out of business by 1991, making solar power systems available to the masses.

The history of solar power usage began well over a hundred years ago as experiments conducted by a few inventors. It has become potentially eco-friendly and inexpensive energy for the future. For many who have solar power systems, that potential already has been achieved.