What is Solar PV?

Photovoltaic (PV) is the ‘direct conversion of light into electrical energy’ using PV cells made of silicon. It’s as simple as that. Daylight can provide electricity for your home, business or school without creating harmful carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions or other pollutants. The PV modules, which come in various shapes and sizes to best suit your needs, are usually attached to a south-facing roof, but there are other options too.

The PV modules are constructed from layers of semi conducting materials that emit electrons when exposed to sunlight. The size and configuration of the panels, determine the amount of electrical energy that can be produced in full sunlight. The units are known as kilowatt peak (kWp).

A popular misconception is that solar electricity can only be successfully generated in countries benefiting from substantially more sunlight than we receive here in the UK. Solar electricity systems don’t actually need direct sunlight and also work well on a cloudy day … of which we have many.

Why Solar?

The UK is home to an ever-expanding community of micro generators. These are people generating their own electricity through small-scale renewable technologies and believe it or not, London is actually one of the most suitable places in the UK to harness the sun’s energy.

Aside from solar electricity generation being a completely clean and renewable energy source, a new government supported initiative (known as the FiT scheme) means there has never been a better time to start generating your own electricity and reaping the rewards, not just financially, but for the greater good.

We will discuss this in more detail, but in a nutshell, the fit scheme allows you to:

  • Generate your own electricity, use it and get paid for it. As a micro-generator you will become part of the national grid, feeding electricity in when you don’t use it up and drawing electricity out when daylight is sparse.
  • Reduce your electricity bills: a typical domestic pv system generates about 40% of the electricity an average household uses a year, so after the initial installation cost, you’ll notice your outgoings are considerably less.
  • Lower your carbon footprint and help move us towards a sustainable energy future: because solar energy is completely ‘green’, you could be saving as much as 1 tonne of CO2 per year.







 

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