Solar panels are a great way to ameliorate the harmful effects of climate change, lower our household energy costs and decrease nonrenewable energy dependence. But is there a downside to all this cheap energy – are solar panels dangerous for firefighters?
Solar panels, typically installed on the roof, are rigid and produce electricity (obviously), potentially making the area unsafe in an emergency situation and threatening firefighters’ ability to respond in a timely fashion. Many governments and first responder organizations have cast a spotlight on this difficult issue.
How do we reduce climate change without creating a hazard for ourselves and first responders?
Are you drawn to the convenience of solar panels? Does the idea of taking a solar panel with you when you go camping, tailgating, or traveling to charge up all your gadgetry whenever you want appeal to you? If you’ve thought about buying a small solar power system but don’t know exactly where to start, we’ve got you covered!Continue reading
Maybe you opened up a solar panel’s spec sheet and quickly spiraled into confusion because of words like wattage, efficiency, power tolerance, and temperature coefficient. What do all these mean? And which one of these solar panel ratings are most important when evaluating a solar panel?
We are here to help! Today, we’re going over all the different categories of solar panel ratings, describing what they are, what they measure, and which ones are important. After reading this article, you’ll have everything you need to both understand and evaluate solar panels.Continue reading
Solar panels come in many varieties, and there are different types of panels for every occasion. Since going solar is a major investment in your home, it’s good to be in-the-know before you invest. And that’s where we come in.
If you’re a swimming pool owner or considering becoming one, there’s a good chance you’re concerned about the energy costs involved. It’s also likely that you’re wondering whether solar panels for swimming pools are a viable investment for reducing those costs.
Solar installations can be very small such as 2 kW (kilowatt) installations composed of just 8 panels, or they can be large 25 kW systems with over 100 panels! This large playing field for installation size might make a 6kW solar system look fairly small, but in all actuality it’s very close to the size of a vast majority of residential solar installations.
So what do 6kW mean and, just as importantly, how much does it cost? Read on to find out!Continue reading
Take a look at our list of 7 factors to consider when deciding if solar is right for you. Write down your answers or make a pros and cons list to make it even easier to decide!Continue reading
Reaching a high power conversion efficiency has always been the goal of solar energy.
Last year, the development of perovskite-silicon solar cells by the Hong Kong Polytechnic University showed great promise by reaching the world’s highest power conversion efficiency of 25.5 percent. This was accomplished by designing a transparent perovskite layer with an optimized thickness that allowed the absorption of light into the silicon part of the solar cell.
Then a few months later, a team from Eindhoven University of Technology showed that adding a few nanometers of a thin layer of aluminum oxide would protect a perovskite solar cell against humidity while increasing power efficiency by three percent.Continue reading
For thousands of years, humans have harvested sunlight. It started simply – warming rooms with large windows or starting fires with mirrors – and led to today’s complex photovoltaic power plants with millions of solar panels each creating electricity.
Knowing the history of solar energy gives us a deeper appreciation for just how much work it took to get us to today’s modern solar technology. Below is just a brief overview of this story.Continue reading
When you’re shopping for a new home, you probably have a checklist of things to do. First, you walk through the home to see if it fits your lifestyle. Next, you have your real estate agent run comps to make sure it’s a good deal. Lastly, you hire an inspector to check out the house and make sure everything is working well.
Buying a house with solar panels is no different. You need to know if the installation fits your lifestyle (more on that later) and if it makes financial sense for you to purchase, both in the short and long-term.Continue reading