Solar Basics

Besides connecting homeowners with trusted and low cost installers, another goal of this site is to go over some solar basics and be generally informative.

The technology that makes residential solar power possible is fairly simple. It basically consists of photovoltaics and the equipment needed for a grid-tied solar electric system.
solar photovoltaics
Photovoltaics is the technology that makes this wonderful source of energy possible. While the technology has been around for more than a century, it has only been in recent decades that it has become both efficient enough and cost effective. New breakthroughs always seem to be right around the corner. However, the fact is that solar power is ready for mass adoption right now.
single solar panel
Most of us first think of solar panels when solar power comes to mind. After all, this is what we see on the rooftops of homeowners that have adopted this energy source. Although there are quite a few different types and manufacturers, they are quite similar in basic function. Future technology promises less space needed on roofs as overall solar cell efficiency improves.
net metering diagram
Net metering is easily one of the most important pieces of the residential solar puzzle. Solar PV system owners can benefit from the energy their systems produces in excess of what is used. As of late 2013, most U.S. states have adopted pro net metering policies. This technology is key in the further development and expansion of the distributed energy source that is residential solar power.

Putting it all together, a residential solar energy system includes everything that is needed for a homeowner to take advantage of this abundant energy source. Another great thing about solar power is that the set up is actually quite straightforward for a properly trained solar installer. This is definitely helping speed the adoption rate of solar throughout the country.
solar plus storage diagram
As seen in the diagram above, solar panel systems will also increasingly include micro-inverters and energy storage in the form of lithium-ion batteries. Both of these technologies help homeowners make better use of the electricity that solar panels produce.

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