What does the word photovoltaic mean?
The word itself helps to explain how photovoltaic technologies work. The word has two parts: photo, meaning light, and volt, a unit of measurement for electricity. . Thus photovoltaic literally means light-electricity.
What are the components of a PV system?
The typical components of a grid tied PV system include PV modules, an inverter, associated wiring, a combiner box, safety disconnecting switches and an interconnecting circuit breaker to tie the PV system to the existing electrical system. The PV module is the basis of the system. The number of PV modules determines the amount of power that will be produced by the system. An array is the arrangement of numerous PV modules. The modules are connected together in series to form groups called strings. String size, the number of modules connected together in series, is used to determine the DC voltage. The combiner box is used to take the paralleled strings and combine them into a single output to send to the inverter. The inverter’s function is converting the DC power, or Direct Current, into usable AC power, or Alternating Current. An inverter’s name plate rating is determined by the amount of power that it is able to output. A 5kW inverter is able to output a maximum of 5,000 W.
What is the lifespan of a PV system?
The PV cells themselves will work indefinitely and produce electricity as long as they have contact with sunlight. Manufacturers provide a twenty five year warranties on most products, however system owners report their systems continue production past the determined twenty five year lifespan.
What maintenance does the system require?
Your system should go years, even decades, without problems. We recommend that the installer conduct a system check once a year, just to ensure everything is performing as it should. Otherwise, you can clean the modules two or three times a year with water to rid it of dust and debris. If your system includes batteries, they may need to be replaced every five to ten years.
How can I tell how my system is performing?
Every building contains a power meter telling you exactly how much electricity you generate and use, and when you are sending power back to the utility grid. If a grid tied system produces more power than the appliances in the building are using then the meter will spin backwards. AGT also offers a system monitoring device and service with every installation. A data monitoring card is installed in the inverter providing real-time, web-based feed of system production. This data card allows for detailed monitoring with better than +/- 5% accuracy. The monitor card detects system interruption and data glitches while feeding instant email alerts to programmers, allowing them to maintain constant vigilance of installations and immediately dispatch an alert. System data/performance can be accessed through a high-speed internet connection and provides you with current weather conditions, AC output, lifetime kilowatt hours, system offsets/efficiency, and daily kilowatt hours produced. The AGT solar monitoring system also shows environmental offsets as a result of the system in tangible terms such as CO2 offset, trees saved and waste recycled rather than land-filled.
Will my system work on cloudy days?
Yes, your system will work on cloudy days, but it will produce less electricity. Through an overcast sky, panels produce approximately half as much as under full sun.
My region is prone to unpredictable weather including hurricanes, is it safe for me to have solar panels?
Yes. We can help you determine which type of system is best for your high wind zone risks.
What is the difference between Chrystalline and thin film PV panels?
Crystalline Silicon (c-Si)cells are wafer thin slices of silicon crystals. There are two types: monocrystalline silicon cells are cut from a single uniform crystal and multicrystalline/Polycrystalline Silicon are cut from multifaceted crystals. There are three main types of thin film technologies commercially available today: Amorphous Silicon (a-Si), Cadmium Telluride (CdTe) and Copper, Indium, Gallium, Serenade (CIGS). The technologies listed in order of power density are: monocrystalline, polycrystalline and thin film. Crystalline modules are more expensive to manufacture and require rigid framing to support their fragility, while thin film modules consume far less resources and can be applied to a variety (including flexible) surfaces.
What is the Solar System Components Package?
The Solar System Components Package includes: solar panels, inverter, structure for the panels, wire, miscellaneous items such as brakers and electrical panels, data logger for monitoring, and maintenance service.
How much is individual equipment?
We provide turnkey solutions, from design to procurement to installation to maintenance. The price for our complete package is 1.6 $/W, that is 1600 $/kW in addition to the 0.5% of the cost of the installation in yearly maintenance.
How long does it take to start operations?
or a detailed on-site inspection and definition of works with the installer: approximately 1 week between the trip and the inspection.
Preparation of the project documentation: approximately 20 days.
Definition of materials and orders: approximately 20 days.
If items are not in stock, the delivery time of the materials: approximately 1 to 2 months.
Then, we can start the operations.
What kind of employees will be working on the project?
I'm concerned about putting holes in my roof to install the system, is there a risk for leaks?
In order to positively mount the panels to the roof, fasteners are necessary. Roof fasteners or penetrations are flashed to ensure a leak-proof installation for decades. By hiring a licensed and credentialed solar professional like Burke energy Solutions, you can be certain your installation will be leak-free. In the case of standing-seam metal roofs and flat roofs, there are mounting systems that use compression hardware or ballast-type mounting systems that don’t require any holes to be drilled.
*Please note that every project is different due to environment, materials required, etc. Please contact us if you have specific questions about a project. These answered questions are meant to clarify generalities regarding Burke Energy Solutions*