Build Your own solar power system
So what exactly is a solar panel anyway? It's essentially a box that keeps a myriad of solar cells. Solar panels would be the things that do the actual work of turning sunshine into electrical energy. But takes some cells which will make a meaningful quantity of energy, and they're really delicate, and so the individual cells tend to be assembled into panels. The panels hold sufficient cells to help make a good number of energy and protect the cells from the elements. It generally does not seem also difficult. I became convinced i possibly could take action myself.
I started out how We start every task, by Googling for info on home-built solar panel systems. I was shocked at how few I found. The truth that hardly any people were building their panels led us to think it must be harder to-do than I was thinking. The project got shelved for a time, but we never stopped thinking about it.
After a while, we found some conclusions:
- The main obstacle to creating solar panels is obtaining solar panels at an acceptable price.
- New solar cells are extremely pricey, and may even occasionally be difficult to find in amount at any price.
- Blemished and wrecked solar panels can be obtained on and other places at a fraction of the cost of brand-new perfect cells.
- These second rate solar panels could probably be used to make a solar panel that would work perfectly.
As soon as I stumbled on the realization that I could utilize blemished and factory-second solar panels to construct my panels, I finally got to work. We began by buying some solar panels away fromI bought several bricks of 3 X 6 mono-crystalline solar panels. It will require a total of 36 among these type solar panels wired in show which will make a panel. Each cell creates about 1/2 Volt. 36 in series will give about 18 volts which may be good for charging 12 volt batteries. (Yes, you really need that large a Voltage to efficiently charge 12 Volt battery packs) this sort of solar cellular can be slim as paper so when brittle and delicate as cup. These are generally quite easily damaged. The vendor of those solar panels dips stacks of 18 in wax to stabilize them and work out it much easier to ship them without harming them. The wax is quite a pain to eliminate though. Whenever you can, find cells for sale that aren't dipped in wax. Keep in mind though they may suffer a few more harm in delivery. Observe that these cells have actually metal monitoring of all of them. You want cells with tabs on all of them. You may be currently going to need to do most soldering to create a panel from tabbed solar panels. If you buy cells without tabs, it's going to at the very least twice as much amount of soldering you have to do. So spend extra for tabbed cells.
I also purchased a few many cells which weren't dipped in wax from anotherseller. These cells emerged packed in a plastic field. They rattled around in package and got just a little chipped up on the edges and corners. Small chips don't really matter excessively. They will not reduce the cellular's result enough to concern yourself with. These are all blemished and factory seconds anyway. The main reason solar panels get declined is actually for chips. Just what exactly's another chip or two? Altogether i purchased enough cells to create 2 panels. I knew I'd most likely break or perhaps ruin at the least several during building, thus I bought extras.
There are several various other sizes of solar panels besides 3 X 6 ins readily available. You could use bigger or smaller cells for your panel. Only hold some things in mind.
- Cells of the same kind all produce the exact same current no matter what size they're. And so the exact same wide range of cells is always needed.
- Bigger cells produce even more existing (Amps) and smaller cells produce less existing.
- The total energy your panel can produce is dependent upon Amps X Volts.
The cells I decided on tend to be 3 X 6 ins in proportions and so are rated at approximately 3 amps. I shall wire 36 of those in series to get somewhat over 18 volts. The result is a panel capable of delivering very nearly 60 Watts of power in bright sunshine. It generally does not seem like a great deal, nonetheless it certain beats no power whatsoever, which will be what I had to my property prior to. And that is 60 Watts all the time as soon as the sunlight is shining. That power goes into charging you battery packs that will primarily be properly used for running lights and little devices just for a few hours at night. When I go to sleep, my power needs drop to next to nothing. So 60 Watts is obviously quite a lot of of use energy, particularly when I also have my wind mill adding to the power production once the wind is blowing.
After you buy your solar cells, place them away in a safe location in which they don't get fallen, played with because of the children, or eaten by the puppy and soon you will be ready to put in all of them inside panel. These cells are very fragile. Rough therapy and extortionate handling will switch your expensive solar panels into little, blue, shiny shards that are not helpful for everything.
a cell is actually simply a low field. So I started out by building myself a shallow box. I made the container shallow so the sides would not shade the solar cells if the sunlight comes at an angle through the edges. It really is manufactured from 3/8 inch thick plywood with 3/4 X 3/4 pieces of lumber round the edges. The pieces are glued and screwed set up. This panel will hold 36 3 X 6 inches solar panels. I made the decision which will make 2 sub-panels of 18 cells each simply so help you construct later. Generally there is a center divider over the middle associated with the box. Each sub-panel will squeeze into one really however panel.
The following is my type of straight back of this envelope design showing the entire proportions of cell. All measurements have been in inches (sorry you followers of the metric system). Along side it pieces tend to be 3/4 by 3/4 and go entirely across the sides of plywood substrate. additionally a bit goes across the center to divide the panel into two sub-panels. This is certainly just the method we made a decision to do it. Nothing is vital about these measurements, or even the overall design. Please deviate in your design. These dimensions are included here for many people who constantly clamor for me personally to add dimensions back at my jobs. I encourage individuals to experiment and innovate independently, in place of blindly proceed with the method I (or someone else) does things. You could really come up with a significantly better design.
Listed here is a close-up showing one half associated with the primary panel. This well will hold one 18 mobile sub-panel. Spot the small holes drilled when you look at the edges for the well. This is the base of the panel (it's ugly inside photo, sorry). They are vent holes maintain the air pressure inside panel equalized with all the external, and allow moisture escape. These holes must be on the bottom of the panel or rainfall and dew will operate around. There additionally needs to be vent holes when you look at the center divider between your two sub panels.
Change: After making use of the panel for a while, we today advise that the vent holes be increased to at the very least 1/4 inch in diameter. Additionally, maintain dust and critters from the panel, stuff slightly fiberglass insulation within the holes in base train associated with the panel. The insulation isn't needed inside holes within the center divider.
Next I slashed two items of masonite peg-board to match inside the wells. These items of peg-board is the substrates that every sub-panel will be constructed on. They were slashed become a loose fit in the wells. You don't need to use peg-board for this. I simply occurred to possess some available. Virtually any slim, rigid and non-conducting product should work.
To protect the solar panels from the weather condition, the panel will have a plexiglass front. Here two pieces of scrap plexiglass are cut to match the front of the panel. I didn't get one piece large enough doing the whole thing. Glass is also utilized for this, but glass is delicate. Hail stones and traveling dirt that could shatter glass will only jump off the plexi. You will start to see just what the finished panel will look like.
Oops! This picture reveals a close-up of where two halves of the plexiglass cover meet throughout the center divider. I drilled and countersunk holes all around the edges of both items of plexiglass therefore I could screw all of them onto the face regarding the panel with 1 inches drywall screws. Be cautious doing work near the edge of the plexi. In the event that you get to intense it'll break, as taken place right here. I recently glued the damaged piece back in and drilled another opening a quick length away.
Next I gave all wooden areas of the panel a few coats of paint to guard all of them from dampness and also the weather condition. The box had been coated inside and out. The kind of paint and color ended up being scientifically opted for by shaking all the paint cans I had laying around in my own garage and choosing the one that felt want it had sufficient remaining in it doing the whole task.
The peg-board pieces were also painted. They got a number of coats on both sides. Make sure you color them on both edges or they'll curl whenever exposed to dampness. Styling could damage the solar cells that'll be glued in their mind.