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The science of solar
Solar panels are installed on your roof or adjacent structure. These solar panels are made up of photovoltaic cells, which convert sunlight into DC power.
- Photons bombard and penetrate the cell.
- They activate electrons, knocking them loose in both silicon layers.
- Some electrons in the bottom layer sling-shot to the top of the cell.
- These electrons flow into metal contacts as electricity, moving into a circuit throughout a 60-cell module.
- Electrons flow back into the cell via a solid contact layer at the bottom, creating a closed loop or circuit.
A solar inverter, or PV inverter, converts the variable direct current (DC) output of a photovoltaic (PV) solar panel into a utility frequency alternating current (AC) that can be fed into a commercial electrical grid or used by a local, off-grid electrical network.
It is a critical component in a photovoltaic system, allowing the use of ordinary commercial appliances. Solar inverters have special functions adapted for use with photovoltaic arrays, including maximum power point tracking and anti-islanding protection.
The utility grid remains in place to supply you with electricity when you need more power than your system has produced; this can happen at night.