Whether you go completely off-grid or simply supplement your household energy; solar power is a great way of coping with the ongoing increase in energy costs and loadshedding woes currently haunting the South African public. The initial investment of solar power is often enough to scare one off from going solar, but the truth is that the payback period of your investment and the subsequent rewards make solar power affordable to most home and business owners.
Solar Power systems are quite complex and are designed according to a number of factors which fall under four main configurations, namely:-
Off-Grid SystemsOff-Grid systems are independent of the utility power grid. They generate electricity, store it, and make it available for use without any connection to the power grid.
Grid-tied SystemsGrid-Tied systems use PV panels to generate DC power. The DC power goes to a grid interactive (grid-tied) inverter which converts the PV panel DC power to 240 volt AC power that is compatible with the power grid. The power from the PV panels goes (via the grid tie inverter) to supply the household power needs. If the PV system is generating more power than the house can use, the excess is sent out over the grid to supply others. If the house needs more power than the PV system can supply, then the extra is drawn from the grid as usual. Grid tied systems only work when the grid is up. If the grid power goes out, the grid tie inverter is required to shut down immediately.
Grid-tied with Battery Back-Up SystemsA grid tied with batteries system is kind of a mix of the two systems. It basically operates like a grid tied system when the grid is up, but it also charges a set of batteries. If the grid goes down, the inverter disconnects from the grid (to protect line workers), but it continues to supply power to the house from the batteries and inverter -- essentially behaving like an off-grid system when the grid is down.
Hybrid SystemsHybrid systems supply the particular load that they have been designed to supply. This system has a battery back-up and can use a number of sources from generators to Eskom to solar energy to charge a battery bank. The inverter acts as a management system and can be programmed to suit your requirements i.e. if the batteries are drained they can be charged by the PV array while the household is powered by the generator and then be switched over once fully charged etc.
Sustainable.co.za provides full system design as well as all the equipment that you need to setup a complete solar power system for your home. Our primary focus is on the promotion of green living and we aim to make solar power affordable for everyone, as a result our prices are reasonable and we have regular special offers and promotions.
Benefits of solar power
- Save money in the long run: after initial setup costs have been taken care of, solar energy is indeed free.
- Power your entire household or supplement power use: solar power generates enough energy to power an entire household, but if that kind of dependence on an admittedly intermittent power source worries you, you can always use solar power to supplement your power needs – use it to heat your pool or your geyser or for outdoor lighting.
- Solar power systems are durable and low maintenance: once you’re equipped you’re set to enjoy years of trouble free energy.
- Store energy: solar power can be stored for inevitable rainy days, so you don’t have to worry about your oven being cut off in the middle of a dinner party. And if you use solar power as a supplemental source of energy, excess electricity generated can be fed back into the grid, which is credited against your conventional power bill.
- Environmentally friendly: solar power doesn’t produce any carbon emissions, it’s clean and renewable, which allows you to reduce your carbon footprint and do your bit to alleviate global warming.
- Silent: with no machines or power lines used to generate solar power, systems are completely silent.
Solar power not only makes environmental sense, it also makes economic sense. Reduce your electricity bills and carbon footprint at the same time with solar power systems from Sustainable.co.za. Contact us now to enjoy the advantages of virtually free energy generation – and learn more about solar power.