Introduction to Solar Panels and Battery Storage

Introduction to Solar Panels and Battery Storage

Solar panels are devices that convert sunlight directly into electricity through a process called the photovoltaic effect. Here's an introduction to how solar panels work and how battery storage can enhance their functionality.

 

How Solar Panels Work

Solar panels are made up of many individual solar cells, typically composed of silicon semiconductors. When sunlight (photons) hits these solar cells, it knocks electrons loose from the silicon atoms.

The solar cells have an electric field running through them which forces these freed electrons to flow in a specific direction, generating an electrical current. This direct current (DC) electricity is then converted to alternating current (AC) by an inverter so it can be used to power homes and businesses.

 

Benefits of Solar Battery Storage

While solar panels generate electricity during daylight hours, that energy cannot be utilized at night or on cloudy days unless it is stored. This is where solar battery storage comes in: 

  • Stores excess solar energy
    Any excess solar electricity generated during the day that isn't immediately used can be stored in batteries for use later when the sun isn't shining.
  • Provides backup power
    With stored solar energy in batteries, you can keep essential appliances running during power outages.

  • Increases energy independence
    By storing your own solar power, you reduce reliance on the utility grid and fossil fuels.

  • Maximizes solar utilization:
    Batteries allow you to use more of the solar electricity your panels produce instead of sending it back to the grid.

  • Reduces electricity bills:
    Using stored solar energy from batteries means buying less electricity from your utility provider.

Battery storage systems, like the Moduly Nødz, work with a home's solar panel array. The batteries charge from the solar panels during the day and that stored energy powers the home at night or during an outage.

With continual improvements and dropping costs, solar battery storage is becoming an increasingly attractive option for maximizing solar energy utilization and energy independence.

How battery storage works in conjunction with solar panels

Battery storage systems allow you to store excess electricity generated by your solar panels for later use. Here's how it works:

1. Daytime Generation
Solar panels generate direct current (DC) electricity from sunlight during the day. This electricity is either used immediately in your home (after being converted to alternating current (AC) by an inverter), or it flows back to the utility grid if not needed
.

2. Charging the batteries
With a battery storage system installed, any excess solar electricity that is not immediately used can instead charge the batteries. The batteries store this energy in the form of chemical potential energy through electrochemical reactions
.

3. Using Stored Energy
The stored energy in the batteries can then be converted back into electricity (DC first, then inverted to AC) to power your home's electrical loads whenever needed - at night when the solar panels are not producing, during cloudy weather, or even during a grid outage
.

The batteries essentially act as an energy reservoir, capturing excess solar generation during the day for use later when the sun is not shining. This allows you to maximize utilization of the solar energy your panels produce and reduce reliance on the utility grid.

Most residential solar battery systems use lithium-ion battery technology, similar to batteries in electric vehicles and consumer electronics but on a larger scale. The batteries are sized to work seamlessly with the solar panel array, inverters, and electrical panel of the home.

By adding battery storage, as the Moduly Nødz, homeowners can increase energy independence, provide backup power during outages, reduce electricity bills by using more self-generated solar power, and minimize their carbon footprint.

Sources:

  1. https://www.nationalgeographic.com/environment/article/solar-power
  2. https://www.energy.gov/eere/solar/solar-integration-solar-energy-and-storage-basics
  3. https://www.forbes.com/home-improvement/solar/what-is-a-solar-battery/