At its simplest, photovoltaics, also known as PV, is the method of generating electrical power by converting the sun’s radiation into direct current electricity.
It all starts with a PV cell that consists of two or more thin layers of semiconducting materials, usually silicon. When the silicon is exposed to light, electrical charges are generated and conducted away through cables as direct current (DC) to an inverter where it’s turned into usable alternating current (AC) that powers lights, computers and refrigerators.
It takes more than a single PV cell to keep the lights on Because they are small, PV cells are combined into modules, or what’s commonly called a solar panel. These panels are connected into an array to generate the desired electrical output, saving you thousands of dollars in energy costs a year while reducing your reliance on grid-tied electrical systems.
The energy is “free” since no fuels are used to make it. But it does come at a cost, namely the initial investment needed to design and install the system. According to some estimates, however, a return on that investment is possible within five years.
ROOFCORP has the expertise to ensure our clients get those returns and reap an assortment of benefits, which include:
- Environmentally Friendly: Photovoltaic systems generate electricity without pollution or emitting CO2 or other gasses harmful to the environment. For that reason, solar is considered a “clean” energy source.
- Low Maintenance: With no moving parts, a PV system requires minimal maintenance. It operates virtually in silence and can be used anywhere there is direct sunlight, including rooftops. Many states have laws that ensure property owners access to solar energy and ban building codes, local ordinances or homeowners associations from blocking the installation of PV systems.
- Profit From a PV Roof: PV panel prices have fallen and can add to the value of a building or home. Federal and state tax incentives, as well as grant and loan program remain generous. In some markets utilities provide rebates. And “net metering” requires utilities buyback excess electricity from rooftop solar systems, at retail prices in some locations.
- Warranties: A manufacturer’s longevity and reputation should be a major issue when selecting components for a photovoltaic system, as is the warranty on the PV panel. Most guarantees are for 25 years, but beware that panels degrade over time.
ROOFCORP partners with you from start to finish ensuring that you get a cost-effective photovoltaic system that meets your needs. To learn more, contact us today.