Sunday, February 27, 2011

THE BASICS OF HOW RAYS OF SUNLIGHT GENERATE ELECTRICITY By: Dana Wilson

THREE EXAMPLES: PHOTOVOLTAIC PANELS, WINDMILLS AND DOMESTIC WATER

PHOTOVOLTAIC PANELS
THE BASICS OF HOW RAYS OF SUNLIGHT GENERATE ELECTRICITY
Photovoltaic (PV) is a way to generate electrical power by converting sun light into direct current electricity (DC) by using solar panels (photovoltaic panels). From these panels electricity flows through wires, an electrical charge controller to control electricity, batteries to store the electricity and inverters to be converted to alternating current (AC) for house hold use.
Some of the components of PV system and what they do:
  • Photovoltaic Panels / cells - generate electricity when exposed to sunlight.
  • Charge Controller - conditioning equipment to regulate battery voltage.
  • Battery storage – to store the electricity produced by the PV panels/cells.
  • Inverter – This device changes direct current to alternating current (AC) to operate appliances in your house. 




WINDMILL BASICS

There are two types of windmills: horizontal and vertical axis turbines
Blades are designed to capture wind
As the blades move, they spin a shaft that leads to a generator
The  generator turns and creates electricity
Wires travel from the generator to batteries in the house
Electricity in the batteries is converted to household electricity
Windmills produce no greenhouse gas emissions/pollutants 

     




BASICS OF SOLAR DOMESTIC HOT WATER


Solar collectors mount to the south side of the house
A 20 Watt solar panel powers the circulation pump
A pump circulates solar heated water from the collectors and
 utilizes copper pipes to the tank



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