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  The Chatter Box : Blathering On
Solar Panels by Ken Dunn on 25 June 2005 9:58am
I was chatting to 'Hells Bells' in the chatroom last night and here is some additional information on solar panels:
I think there are only two types.
Type 1 is the black panel heat absorbent which uses water to absorb the heat for puting into the heating or hot water system in the building.
Type 2 is the solar cell which generates electricity to use with the building's electrical system.
Re: Solar Panels by beccles on 26 June 2005 11:31am
What I dont understand about Oz (and no not where the wizard lives) is why the country hasn't gone solar yet. Australia is currently highly reliant on the burning of coal to generate electricity (as are most countries) HOWEVER, solar power is effective provided you have vast areas of space and plenty of sunlight....

Well I mean what else can you do with a desert (of which Australia is mostly made up of) apart from use it as a very large sand pit?
Re: Solar Panels by Hells Bells on 26 June 2005 12:33pm
Thanks Ken Dunn for the info on solar panels - I hope they'll be effective up here - I can't remember the last time I saw the sun!! Hopefully, we'll get a grant of some sort to help us out with costs of trying to go green - I'm looking into it now. All the best and thanks again Ken.
Re: Solar Panels by intrepid on 26 June 2005 1:35pm
Honestly, nobody put me up to this, but could somebody do us a public service and tell us something about solar panels? For example, it's NOT true that you can only run appliances from them when the sun's out, right? How do you store the electricity? Does the amount of electricity that they produce vary with the intensity of light? How much of your household's electrical needs can be met with the solar panels you've got? How much power would a 1 meter by 1 meter panel produce in an afternoon? It goes on and on- can somebody give us a primer?
Re: Solar Panels by Ken Dunn on 26 June 2005 6:55pm
Hi Intrepid. We would need a physicist or scientist to give us the equivalent wattage of heat collected by a 1m square solar panel type 1 when the sun is out full and and similarly with the electrical one. There are also mechanical heat units called Btu's (British Thermal Units) which you get from gas but the SI (Systeme Internationale) does the basic energy units in Joules. I would need to research my old physics books, if I can find them, for more details. Alternatively, a salesman for either of the two products might read this thread and add some input.
Re: Solar Panels by Dr. Piglet on 27 June 2005 9:12pm
hey gang. i just happen to be married to a HVAC professional. :)

RE (renewable energy) is becoming more efficient and workable in the real world as computer technology and such things as the ballard fuel cells come out of the lab and into the marketplace.

solar cells (PV or photovoltaics) make up what folks normally refer to as a "solar panel". the silicon crystal structure of these cells absorbs the sun's energy and this can be used immediately to heat water etc. or passed through an inverter to be stored in batteries for future use. this is how the energy can still be used, even when the sun is not shining.

as for how many cells you will need to power a home, this is dependent upon your square footage and whether you intend to live off the grid completely or merely supplement your electricity usage from your local utility. as well, most homes and home appliances were not "wired" with RE in mind. therefore, unless you are building a new home with RE-specs, you may run into problems. for example, you can't run a 240VAC major appliance on solar. most solar systems for homes are 24 or 48 VDC.

this site ought to answer any further questions:



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